When the starting gun fires for New Zealand’s Bay of Islands swim on 28 November it will mark 10 years of growth of open water swimming in the country. In that time, the series has grown from a couple of low key events to a popular nationwide series.
Founder Scott Rice says: “When I started this series all those years ago I had very high hopes but I had no idea that my team and I would still be going strong a decade later. Whilst the series has definitely grown, so have the participants’ abilities and enthusiasm to take the plunge. It just goes to show that Kiwis of all ages and abilities love swimming and testing their own abilities in the water.”
The Bay of Islands Classic is the first of seven events in the 2015/16 New Zealand Ocean Swim Series.
This season will also mark the debut of two new events; the Christchurch Crown (which will replace the La Grande swim in Akaroa) and the Legend of the Lake (Rotorua). Remaining events will also include perennial favourites: the Harbour Crossing (Auckland), Capital Classic (Wellington), Sand to Surf (Mt Maunganui) and the King of the Bays (Auckland).
Distances at the Bay of Islands Classic range from the 300m ‘Give it A Go’ to the 3.3km ‘I’m Going Long’.
As with previous years, the 2015/16 series looks set to attract some top name swimming elites including last year’s winners Nathan Capp and Charlotte Webby.
The charity partner for the New Zealand Ocean Swim Series is Surf Life Saving New Zealand.
For more information see www.oceanswim.co.nz