cochrane mike 05

Is this a record?

Phew! Kiwi geek Mike Cochrane totalled 307.8km from 68 swims over season 2014/15, setting a record that will be referred to the Guinness people for inclusion in their annual picture book.

After setting out to best last season's fine ocean swimmers' tallies winner, Nick McCouat, Cochrane made McCouat appear insouciant with his previous season's tally of 185.1km, let alone the year before that's winner, Neil Daley, with 110.7km. What was Daley doing for the rest of the year?

budgeysmugglerlogo150the fine ocean swimmers tallies 2014/15 are supported by...

This season's tallies were so overwhelmed with Kiwis and Wessna-Stra'ans doing longer distances that 12 swimmers beat Daley's 2013/14 result, although only Cochrane beat McCouat from last year. Those other 11 were in between the two, benefiting at last from the series of longer swims run by Swimming WA, and the proliferation of known swims around New Zealand.

It was the first time that the tallies had not been won by a swimmer from NSW, the smug state. This season just finished, only two NSW swimmers finished in the Top 60, and the first of those, Richard Murray, himself a previous winner, could manage only 9th with 117.3km. Jim Donaldson was 11th wth 116.5km.

2nd in 2014/15 was a teenager from the West, Caitlyn James, who swam 152.7km in just 20 swims -- the Swimming WA effect at work -- averaging 7.6km per swim, against Cochrane's average of 4.5km. Then followed, as they say at the track, four other Kiwis before another Wessna-Stra'an.

The travel prizes went to transplanted Pom Pauline Mills, now in Auckland, who finished 4th but was the highest ranking swimmer after Cochrane who was able to take up the prize. Mills came to Vanuatu with us earlier in June, along with her partner, Wayne Annan, who finished 3rd but hasn't swum since April following a health scare. The other travel prize, also to Vanuatu, went to another English lady in Auckland, Linda Collard, who won in a draw of the top 20.

In the end, the Top 20 were -

1 Cochrane Mike 33 NZ 307.8km. 68 swim, 4.5km ave
2 James Caitlyn 18 WA 152.7 20 7.6
3 Annan Wayne 58 NZ 145.1 47 3.1
4 Mills Pauline 49 NZ 137.8 39 3.5
5 Bell Joanne Marie 34 NZ 129.1 47 2.7
6 Hollingsworth Rebecca 26 NZ 126.5 29 4.4
7 Gaudin Stephanie 30 WA 124.4 23 5.4
8 Soulsby Roger 68 NZ 119.6 38 3.1
9 Murray Richard 52 NSW 117.3 34 3.5
10 Seaman Gary 54 NZ 117.2 33 3.6
11 Donaldson Jim 58 NSW 116.5 35 3.3
12 Harris Christina 50 NZ 115.1 33 3.5
13 Collard Linda 51 NZ 108.5 38 2.9
14 Smith Bradley 24 WA 107.1 16 6.7
15 Stark Jenny 57 NZ 105.3 42 2.5
16 Searcy Ben 35 WA 101.1 18 5.6
17 Carter Geoff NZ 94.2 41 2.3
18 Spooner, Erin WA 89.7 12 7.5
19 Bradley, Brett, NZ 89.6 44 2.0
20 Sligo, Malcolm WA 89.5 11 8.1

Regional leaders at the end of the season were –

  • NSW – Richard Murray, 9th overall on 117.3km
  • NZ - Mike Cochrane, 1st overall on 307.8km
  • Victoria – Jacqueline Ross, 25th on 85km
  • Queensland – Reece Southall, 42nd on 73.6km
  • Tasmania – Ray Winstanley, 294th on 40.7km
  • NT – Amy Messenger, 530th on 31km
  • SA – Scott Rowlands, 197th on 45.5km

Full list

For the full list at the end of season 2014/15 (May 31)... Click here

Regional lists

Season stats

  • Swims recorded - 823 (700 in 2013/14)
  • Swimmers - 47,335 (48,529)
  • Total distance - 183,871.4km (173,921.6km)
  • Individual swims - 91,032 (88,397)
  • Average distance per swimmer - 2km (2km)

For full season's stats, including comparisons running back to 2005/06... Click here

For full list of swims included in season 2014/15 fine ocean swimmers' tallies... Click here

Thank you to Colin Reyburn for his work in collating these tallies on a zero-hours contract.

Thank you to for their support of the fine ocean swimmers tallies 2014/15.

Season 2013/14

mccouatnicktwitterSo now we know officially what we've know unofficially for weeks: our 2013/14 fine ocean swimmers tallies have been blown away by Sydney obsessive Nick McCouat.

Nick swam 185.1km in 43 official swims over the course of the season, around 45km farther than anyone has swum before. Goodness knows how far extra he swam in training.

In the end, Nick was 44.5km ahead of 2nd placegetter, Kiwi Geoff Carter, on 140.68km from 52 swims, followed by Sydney's Katie Price, on 118.5km from 31 swims, then another Kiwi, Wayne Annan, on 118.08km from 36 swims.

Nick McCouat wins a trip to Vanuatu for his win in the series. But Nick won't take the prize. He figures he's travelled enough for a while and is enjoying chillaxing at home. So the prize slips down the list.

But Geoff Carter already has a Vanuatu prize as the NZ regional winner of the tallies. So the prize slips again.

And Katie Price can't take it, either. As we speak, Katie is o/s for the Alcatraz Sharkfest swim in San Francisco. So it slips again.

So congratulations, Wayne Annan: you win the Vanuatu travel prize for the 2013/14 fine ocean swimmers tallies.

Both Geoff and Wayne win four nights in Port Vila, with airfares by courtesy of Air Vanuatu, and accommodation by courtesy of the Warwick Le Lagon Resort.

One observation we'd make: the addition of the Vanuatu travel prize to the fine ocean swimmers tallies, following the support for the series from, certainly has added piquancy to the competition, with increasing awareness from interstate (especially from the West, where the series of longer swims offered by Swimming WA gives the locals a leg up). And the fact that Kiwis have gone so close over the past three seasons has drawn in the international interest, too.

Interesting, to say the least, that of the first 44 place-getters, all but three are from New Zealand or Wessna-stra'a. Those three all are from NSW. At 45 is our first Victorian, Lisandra de Carvalho, who won our Vanuatu prize last year through the Portsea Swim Classic.

As Western swimmers benefit from the many long swims there, so NZ swimmers benefit from two short course series run mid-week in Auckland. Swims in these two series are between 1km and 2km; sprints, really, but they add up when you do both each week from late spring through early autumn.

Have a geek at the list below... Note how many swims Wessna-Stra'a's Liz Bettridge did for her 9th placing for her distance, compared with those in NSW and NZ, and her average distance.

So, at the end, these are the top 10 -

1 - Nick McCouat, 31, NSW, 185.1kms, 43 swims, average 4.3km per swim
2 - Geoff Carter, 63, NZ, 140.68km, 52, 2.7km
3 - Katie Price, 28, NSW, 118.5km, 31, 3.8kms
4 - Wayne Annan, 58, NZ, 118.08kms, 36, 3.3km
5 - Jenny Stark, 56, NZ, 113.28kms, 46, 2.5kms
6 - Jim Donaldson, 58, NSW, 109.1kms, 35, 3.1kms
7 - Mike Cochrane, 33, NZ, 95.6kms, 31, 3.1kms
8 - Jan Sutton, NZ, 90.48kms, 28, 3.2kms
9 - Liz Bettridge, 54, WA, 90.4kms, 15, 6.0kms
10 - Brett Bradley, NZ, 90.18kms, 42, 2.1kms

We'll have details and breakdowns of all swims and swimmers online on later today. See... Click here

We include all the swims of which we're aware around Stra'a, NZ and the Pacific in our tallies. If you do a swim overseas and you'd like it included, let us know, with a link to the online results, and we'll include those swims, too... Click here

Final tallies

For the complete final list of tallies to season's end, end of May... click here

Regional tallies

Season swims

Swims included in these tallies... Click here

Season statistics

For all the stats of the season... Click here

If there are issues with your listing in the tallies... click here

Thank you to propellor-head Colin Reyburn for his help in compiling the fine ocean swimmers' tallies. We couldn't do it without him.


Our thanks to who are support our tallies again in season 2013/14.


Just a couple of rules: we don't include relay swims, because we can't be sure how far each team member has swum. We know of relays when one team member has swum 90 per cent of the swim, and the others the rest. And we include only those swims that are open to all-comers: if there's a qualification of some kind, or a restriction, or in some other way it's not open to all equally, then we can't include it. That's about fairness.

NSW retiree takes out 2012/13 tallies

So it's happened at last: with his last mninute flight to Bundaberg, peripatetic Port Macquarie retiree Neil Daley has won the season 2012/13 fine ocean swimmers' tallies, with 110.7km swum from 32 swims, at an average distance of 3.5km.

Daley sealed his win with the 3km Bundaberg swim, which lifted him just far enough ahead of his snapping rival, former winner Richard Murray, on 100.5km from 29 swims (average 3.5km), to guarantee him victory irrespective of whether Murray became a last-minute entry to the 10km South Head Roughwater, the season's final swim, on May 19. Daley did; Murray didn't; Daley prevailed.

Our staff pointy-head, Colin Reyburn, recorded results from 613 swims to complete the season's tallies, up from 551 in season 2011/12, and from 209 in season 2007/8. There were 47,431 swimmers whose distances we tallied, from 45,152 last season and 30,185 in season 2007/8. They swam 168,264.1km in the season, from 154,882.03km last season and 102,877.63km in 2007/8.

There were 85,436 individual swims in the season just ended, at an average distance of 2km, slightly up from the average 1.9km the season earlier.

For full details, see the table below.

We'd love to know how far Daley travelled over the season for his 110.7km. He's coming to Spain with us, so perhaps he'll tell us over a late night paella and Estrella. But from Port Macquarie, where Daley lives in retirement after Adelaide, every weekend was a trek.

Third postiion went to Daley's travelling cobber, Jim Donaldson, from Westleigh, on 96.5km also from 32 swims, average 3km.

The three NS-Welshpersons filling the podium places reflects the eight-month season in NSW. The first swim of the new season comes up there in late June with the Mona Vale Solstice Swim on June 23. Lots of NSW swimmers also are doing Vanuatu, which offers a base 5.9km with main swims in Port Vila then in Santo. Not a bad season's start.

Look below for full details, and for various state/national/regional winners.

Then followed -

  • 4th - Michael Swaddle (WA, 92.1km)
  • 5th - Jenny Stark (NZ, 91.9km)
  • 6th - Geoff Carter (NZ, 91.3km)
  • 7th - Brett Bradley (NZ, 82.6km)
  • 8th - Jillian Pateman (NZ, 81.7km)
  • 9th - Wayne Annan (NZ, 78.7km)
  • 10th - Joshua Randall (WA, 75.2km)

Thank you enormously to industrious propellor-head Colin Reyburn for rmaintaining our tallies.

Final tallies 2012/13...

Check the full, final tallies for season 2012/13 (as at the end of May, 2013)...

Details, details...

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