Month: February 2019


Port Nelson swims, February 28, 2019

Turned out to be a rough one. Out of kindness to those swimming on Saturday, the course was shortened to 1100m, with a short version of about 450m.

Results in finish order, click here

Results in age group order, click here.

Photos by Sandra McGregor click here.

Points to date, click here

Port Nelson Swims, Thursday February 21

Interesting venue – rotten getting in and out due to the very low tide, but a nice swim.

Here’s the results in age group order, click here

Here’s the results in finish order, click here

Here’s a lot of photos by Sandra McGregor – click here

Here’s a funny little video

Story now on The Nelson App on your mobile device (news tab) – also on Sportzhub (click here)

Points to date (sorted on the best 12 of each swimmer’s results), click here

The Interislander Big Tahuna is coming up in just over a week – on Saturday March 2. If you haven’t entered yet, please do. Use the code SWIMNELSON10 to get a discount on your entry.

It’s easy to take events like this for granted, but getting it here was the result of some serious lobbying. Christchurch want it back. We believe the event does the sport of sea swimming in our area a lot of good and we’d like to keep it. The things we can do to make it attractive include being our friendliest and most welcoming to visitors (we’re offering a free Thursday swim next week to all those who have travelled here), to ensure that entry numbers are as big as we can make them, and to provide plenty of volunteers to help with setup and running of the event.

For Friday next week (March 1), we need as many people as possible at 2pm to set up the main structures – fences, tents, etc. Even if you can only spare an hour in your lunch break, please consider coming and helping with this. We need a few more on Friday to help with preparing race packs and other tasks, but it’s the donkey work of getting all the materials carried to the beach that we need to most help with.

On race day, Saturday March 2, our resources will be stretched. We need 15 volunteers to help with a variety of tasks – registration tent, clipping off race numbers at the finish, keeping the finish line clear, helping the race director, being a gopher to and from the timing tent and so on. Although competitors can do some of this, these tasks are mostly for people not competing. That means your mother, father, brothers sisters, husbands, wives, friends and workmates. You can help by shoulder tapping someone you know.

If you can help, or know of someone who can on either day, please email or phone me, Peter Gibbs, on 026 2406 933

Newsletters: If you enter any of our events online, we add you to our mailing list for regular newsletters. However, if you’re an on-the-night entry, you may not be on our mailing list. If you’d like to be added, please email us ( – all we need is your name and email address.

Clements Endurance Series, Race Four, 3.8km Ironman Challenge

The early morning start was worth it to get a nice calm sea. A beautiful day, with 70 starters in the long swim of 3.8km and 11 starters in the 1.3km swim.

The finish was dramatic, with three swimmers sprinting for the line – the shelving beach making it tricky to stay upright. In the end it was Alec Swan by a second from Fergus Drummond with a further second back to Bendi Kepess. Luke Kelly strolled ashore for fourth. Next was another sprint between Sierra Thomas and Abbey Smale – Sierra taking it by one second.

The race records were smashed, seven men coming in under Luke Kelly’s 2014 record and the first two women smashing Lisa Birkett’s 2013 record by more than five minutes. For historic times, click here

Results in finish order, click here

Results in age group order, click here

Story on Sportzhub

We didn’t have a photographer on deck today, but here’s a few pics and a couple of videos

If you happened to get any photos, please email them to and we’ll add them to the album

Next big swim is The Interislander Big Tahuna, less than two weeks away now. This is the only South Island swim in the Banana Boat Series and Christchurch would like it back. We need to show that we treasure this chance to showcase our region and our swimmers.

You can help in two ways – by putting in an entry, and/or volunteering to help. You can score a discount on your entry by using the code SWIMNELSON10. You can volunteer to help on either Friday March 1 or Saturday March 2 (or both). We need bodies to help carry and arrange things and pack race goodies from 2pm Friday. We especially need volunteers on Saturday for a number of tasks, including registration, helping with prizegiving etc – even if you’re swimming, you may be able to help before or after your swim.. If this is the only thing you can do to help this summer, please do. Email if you can help

Port Nelson Swims – Thursday February 14

A bit rough early on, so shorter courses. However, things died down a bit, so it became a shorter preparation for Sunday’s long swim.

Results in age group order, click here

Results in finish order, click here

Points click here (Note that the table is now sorted on your best 12 swims – your worst results are discarded)

Photos by Simon Alexander, click here

Following the most recent Banana Boat Ocean swim at Mt Maunganui, Sierra Thomas now sits on top of the national women’s standings. Sierra (pictured with fellow medal winner club president Dick Bennison) is also the national secondary schools champion over the 2km and 500m open water swim distances – great achievements.

Ocean Swims, Race Four, Sand to Surf, Mt Maunganui

Another good day for Nelson swimmers. The long swim of 2.6km was shortened to about 2km due to the rough conditions, with a particularly difficult section through the surf from the shore out to the first buoy. Of eleven swimmers, seven won age group medals, while Sierra Thomas added the gold medal for the first woman overall and Luke Kelly added a bronze medal for third overall.

In addition, Sierra Thomas, Bendi Kepess and Sophie Alexander added secondary school medals in the long race and added to them in the 500m race.

Full Nelson results here when available.

Photos, click here

Official results

2km results (to be confirmed)

Luke Kelly, gold M20-24 (also third overall)

Bendi Kepess, bronze M15-19 (also fourth overall)

Sierra Thomas, gold F15-19

Sophie Alexander

Hamish Neill, silver M50-54

Steve Clements, gold M60-64

Janis Crampton, silver F60-64

Dick Bennison, bronze M65-69

Brian McGurk

Peter Gibbs

Renato Melo

Port Nelson swims, February 7

It was a wonderful swim tonight, with the long swim stretching out to about 1600m, taking in the area south to Richardson St, north to a buoy off the Haulashore jetty, then back to the ramp.

Age group results, click here

Results in finish order, click here

Photos, click here

Points, click here.

Story – here Friday or Saturday

Following the highly successful showing of Nelson swimmers at the Capital Classic in Wellington, many of our swimmers are featuring on the age group lists in the Banana Boat Ocean Swim Series.

Most notable is Andrew Martin, who is fifth in the overall male standing after swimming in all three races so far (Bay of Islands, Omaha and Wellington).

In the age group standings we have many in the top three (although swimmers who have swum in all three races have an advantage so far, final points are taken from the best three results of the seven race series):

Sierra Thomas 1st= F15-19

Luke Kelly and Fraser Neill, 2nd= M20-24 (One win each)

Andrew Martin 1st M55-59

Janis Crampton 1st F60-64 (A perfect record of three wins)

Maggy Johnston 2nd F60-64

Peter Gibbs 1st M70-74

Stuart Hebberd 3rd M70-74 (after just two swims)

Derek Eaton 1st M75-79

For the full series points so far, click here. The next Banana Boat event on the calendar is at Mt Maunganui this Saturday

Clements Endurance Series Race Three – Haulashore Circuit

A perfect day – especially appreciated after a summer of rough swims. With a long weekend and the attraction of pool competition for the younger swimmers, number were down to 80 – 12 in the short swim and 68 in the full circuit.

Times in finish order click here

Times in age group order, click here

Photos by Annie Odienne, click here

Here’s the story on Sportzhub, click here

Here’s the best times for the circuit over the years, click here.