Busy Week in Open Water Swimming

A shout out to all swimmers in our community who conquered their challenges this past week. Read on to be inspired by some of these swimmer’s impressive results.

Craig McKibbin: After seven days of swimming, through changing weather conditions, Craig completed an 85 kilometre lap of Lake Waikaremoana’s edge, towing a raft of his supplies. The swim was the end point of 18 months of planning and training for the Waikato father of two, with more than $5000 raised for Hawke’s Bay’s U-Turn trust. View Craig’s videos and photos in his event’s Facebook page.

Mike Cochrane and Katrina Price: Completed a 152.6 kilometre staged swim around Lake Taupo, totaling a massive 60 hours and 19 minutes of swimming in 8 days. Mike and Katrina are only the second and third swimmers to achieve this amazing feat, following Peter Cook’s success in February 2011. After all of that freshwater training, Mike impressively made it to the Blue Lake swim in Rotorua, for his 3.5km warm down swim!

Kim Sherwen: Swam 40.6 kilometres across Lake Taupo, beating her 13 hour goal with a total finish time of 12 hours and 34 minutes.

On Sunday 19 February we had a rare occurrence of a Cook Strait and Foveaux Strait crossing happening on the same day.

Simon Olliver: Conquered the Foveaux Strait completing NZ’s triple crown (Cook Strait, Lake Taupo and Foveaux Strait). He is now one of NZ’s most accomplished marathon swimmers.

Marty Filipowski: Swam the Cook Strait becoming the 100th swimmer ever to complete the swim. “Dead calm” conditions saw Marty, 53, complete the marathon north to south swim in just over nine hours. He was guided by NZ’s most accomplished open water swimmer and legendary marathon swim coach and manager Philip Rush. Rush, who has completed the crossing eight times, said he would have liked to have nabbed the 100th crossing title, but was just as happy to help a fellow swimmer achieve the goal. “Every swim is different and every swimmer is different but I still get a buzz every time we come into the finish” – said Rush to Stuff.

Two more swimmers completed the Cook Strait crossing the following day (Monday 20 February) too.

Beth French: Became the 101st swimmer to swim the Cook Strait, completing her third swim in her record breaking ‘Oceans 7’ Challenge which sees her aiming to swim seven sea channels in less than a year.

Kevin Cassidy: from Australia, also swam across the Cook Strait.


The New Zealand Ocean Swim Series has been a catalyst for positive changes to thousands of Kiwis by providing them the motivation to get active and healthy as they train for their challenge. Now it’s your turn! Enter, train, feel good and SMASH IT!


Thanks to Dan Abel for some of the facts above.