Port Nelson Sea Swim race 15 dominated by the Swan family

By Peter Gibbs

Race 15 of the Port Nelson Sea Swim series was dominated by the Swan family, with 16-year-old Alec winning the 1700m race and 13-year-old Brooke taking out the short race over about 600m.

Photos, by Sandra McGregor
Alec Swan, winner of the 1700m race in last week's Port Nelson series.
Brooke Swan continued her unbeaten record in the short swim series, racing over 600m last week.

For Brooke, the win was a continuation of an unbeaten streak of eight swims, while Alec has only managed to take part in four races in the series so far, recording his first win.
However, Alec has an unblemished record in the longer Clements Endurance Swim Series, having won both the first in the series from Tahuna Beach to the Nelson Yacht Club in December, as well as the recent 2.8km Haulashore Circuit.

What is remarkable about the record of the pair is that they live and go to school in Rai Valley.

Their mother, Maria Cory drives them to the Richmond Aquatic Centre every week day, arriving for two hours training at 5.30am, as well as Saturdays at 5am and three afternoon sessions at 5pm.

The sea swim competition comes on top of that.

It's training like this that has put the Aquatic Centre swimmers to the fore in the sea swim competition, with training mates Fergus Drummond and Oxford Bayley taking second and third last week and Abbey Smale, Sierra Thomas and Sophie Alexander taking the top three women's spots.

Behind Brooke on Thursday in the short event, Olivia Huata-Findlay narrowly edged out Emily Chadderton after a thrilling stroke-for-stroke sprint to the finish line, with 12-year-old Corey Tremblay next, securing the top male spot.

Last week's swims were contested by 120 swimmers, who faced perfect conditions in a circuit around the basin between Rocks Rd and Haulashore Island.

With only three swims remaining in the series, swimmers will accumulate points from their best 11 results, leaving Luke Kelly and Abbey Smale as fairly certain winners in the long series, although Abbey has so far only completed nine swims.

In the short swim series, Brooke Swan and Corey Tremblay are looking the likely winners.

Many swimmers from the region face the challenge this weekend of race three of the national Banana Boat series, a 5km swim across Akaroa harbour, with the 3km Interislander Big Tahuna coming to Nelson on March 7.

Full information and results at nelsonseaswims.co.nz.