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The start of something extraordinary

Taupo tops list for Auckland open water swimmer

Wayne Annan took his first crack at open water swimming in the 1980’s as part of a triathlon, it took him 34 minutes to complete the 500m swim.

His next open water swimming event did not come again until 2007 when he completed the 750m swim at the Capital Classic.

A few years on and with more events under his belt Annan’s attention was drawn to the first Epic Swim being run by Swimming New Zealand at Lake Taupo.

“It was the most enjoyable event I had done so far. I was with the squad I swam with in Wellington, and every member of the squad won a medal during the weekend placing in their respective age groups,” Annan said.

He has now completed all of the Epic Swims and is signed up for his sixth straight Epic Swim in 2015.

“I enjoy seeing all the swimmers I have met from all over the country each year there and also love watching the elite doing their thing.”

“My favourite Epic is always the last one, I learn something from each time, even though last year I did not finish the 10km, but did finish the 5km just before it.“

For the 2015 Epic Swim Annan has entered the 5km and 2.5km on the Saturday and the 2.5km on the Sunday with a goal to swim well and finish strong.

He already has plans to enter the 10km at the 2016 Epic Swim as a 60 year old.

Annan’s journey through open water swimming has also led him to organising the Auckland Marathon Swim with Auckland Central Masters Inc.

The first event was run in April last year with the next one on 26th April 2015 from Mairangi Bay to Devonport.

“My advice to anyone doing it (the Epic Swim) for the first time is to take your time building into the event you are doing, it is different swimming in lake water to the ocean or harbour.  You can drink the water, and it pays to do so during the longer swims.”

“Being able to breathe both sides is a great advantage. In the 10km ensure you have a feeding plan and have practiced before the event.”

The 2015 Epic Swim is being held at Lake Taupo on the 10th and 11th of January and comprises a range of recreational and competitive swims from 100m to 17.5km.