Banana Boat Ocean Swim Series race four, The Interislander Big Tahuna

What a fantastic day and what a fantastic event.

The weather was perfect and the sea was beautiful as Nelson swimmers took the first five places (Luke Kelly, Hayden Squance, Fergus Drummond, Oxford Bayley and Abbey Smale) overall in the 3k race, as well as seventh (Terry Bone), 10th (Isabella Thurlow), 12th (Hamish Neill), 15th (Sierra Thomas) and 19th (Matt Hansen). That’s ten of the first 20 places.

That means the overall top three men were all from Nelson, while Abbey won her fourth Banana Boat swim from four this season and Isabella took third woman overall. Isabella would probably have been second, but chose to enter the spirit of the occasion and take on the Aflex slide en route to the finish.

As well, Nelson swimmers took a swag of age group medals. In the 3k there were 11 age group gold medals, 8 silver and 6 bronze.

In the 1km race, Terry Bone returned to the water to win the race, with Christina Harris (2nd woman) and Roger Matheson also taking a second swim. Nelson swimmers won seven gold, seven silver and six bronze in the 1k race.

In the 500m race, Jobe Mcauley was second overall  and Eddie Swain was third overall, with Nelson swimmers winning five gold, six silver and three bronze medals.

Click here for detailed Nelson results.

One of the best things about the event was the performances of the many Nelson volunteers, who gave unstintingly of their time in setting up, managing the event and packing down the tents, barriers and masses of equipment.

Here’s some great early photos from Mark Tantrum, click here – check back for more later

Here’s a story on Sportzhub, click here