Thursday, 13 February 2020




President: John Fisher (WK1)
Secretary/Treasurer: Mike Bodger (WH2)
Northern Region: Jan Fulton (RK1), Rodrigo Sigwalt (SC1)
District Region: Matheus Ferro Ribeiro (KT2)
Capital Region: Marco Cecioni (RM4)
National Recorder: Paulette Tasker (WK1), Jan O’Donnell (NS1, past officer)
IT Officer: Liz Davidson (NS1)
Open Water Swimming: Mike Bodger (WH2)

- APOLOGIES - Andrew Gabites (Webmaster), Lesley Parkin (Swimming Officer), Warren Gilbertson (Vice President), Liesl Ploos Van Amstel (Masterscrawl Editor), Steve Clarke (DN5)

- DECEASED MEMBERSLyall Mortimer (HU4), Alwyn Manley (RK1), Jim Drummond (HC4).

- THE MINUTES of the 45th Annual General Meeting held on Friday 25th May 2018 were presented to the meeting and then accepted as a true and correct record

The need for at least two standardised programmes of events for sanctioned meeting was discussed.  Hosting clubs tend to set the order of events in programme and whilst a few swimmers question the order of events, most swimmers are happy with the programme of the meet.  

We need to discourage swimmers from submitting NO TIME (NT)for a swim event and a motion was moved by Rodrigo Sigwalt and seconded by Marco Cecioni to put in times for NT swimmers from the average time of swimmers in the respective age group. Times stay in the database for two years before new times are added.

- MEMBERSHIP FEES FOR 2019/20 -Membership fees have increased to $70 per year with a $5 saving if paid online.  Effective from 1st July 2020

- ALLOWANCES AND HONORARIA - These were approved by the meeting and the only change was for the Computer Officer.

- APPOINTMENTS - The current officer’s positions were endorsed.

President - John Fisher
National Secretary/Treasurer – Mike Bodger
Webmaster - Andrew Gabites
National Recorder – Paulette Tasker
Computer/IT Officer – Liz Davidson
Masterscrawl Editor – Liesl Ploos Van Amstel
Openwater Swimming Officer – Mike Bodger

Vice-President - Matheus Ferro Ribeiro
Swimming Officer – Marco Cecioni

NZMS also pays an annual fee of $200 to Aquatics New Zealand, who oversees all aquatic divisions in New Zealand. Our representative from Masters Swimming is Roger Eagles (FV5) and Roger will continue in this role for 2019/20

- NZMS SWIMMER OF THE YEAR:  Kyla Steenhart.  Kyla has broken 12 NZ records

We are hopeful that Raumati Masters will host the NISC2020 and that North Shore Masters will host the Long Course championships

Minutes AGM Nov 2019
Financial Report - Mike Bodger
Computer Officers Report  Liz Davidson
Webmaster's Report - Andrew Gabites
Editor's Report - Liesl Ploos van Amstel
Swimming Officer's Report - Marco Cecioni
National Recorder Report - Paulette Tasker
Trophy Officer's Report - Lesley Parkin

President's Report 2019

After the surge in interest for the Auckland World Masters Games 2017, it was always going to be a challenge to maintain the momentum generated by such a massive event. 

We hosted our usual sanctioned meets, although (not surprisingly) entries were not at the same level as leading up to World Masters Games.

The same clubs hosted the sanctioned meets. In some respects this can be viewed positively, as it provides stability and strengthens those clubs relationships with officials, local business and sponsors. However, if other clubs offered to host more meets, it would reduce the burden shouldered by the same group of people year after year. 

For the first time in 6 years, the organisation posted a financial loss. This can be largely attributed to the cost of the online database that is made available from Swimming NZ and also to the transition to align our financial year to that system (which effectively gifted 6 months free membership). Although this was anticipated and the organisation remains in a strong financial position, we cannot sustain the level of loss and this year we will be looking for areas where costs can be cut. 

The membership system is now well embedded and has greatly reduced the effort involved in membership administration and hosting meets. We are indebted to our IT officer Liz Davidson who has worked tirelessly to make all of our lives easier. 

We continue to have a good working relationship with Swimming NZ and meet regularly to explore areas in which we can work together for the benefit of all swimmers. 

The number of FaceBook followers is well past 1000 and growing, and subscribers to the MasterScrawl blog have increased. Many thanks to Swim T3 for their continued support in proving prizes. 

Once again I extend sincere and grateful thanks go to office bearers, Mike Bodger (National Secretary), Andrew Gabites (Webmaster), Jan O’Donnell (National Recorder), Lesley Parkin (Swimming & Trophies Officer) and Liz Davidson (IT Officer). 

Special thanks to Jan O’Donnell who has retired from the role of National Recorder, and to Lesley Parkin who is relinquishing the Swimming Officer role. We are very grateful for your long years of service and also for your support to ensure a seamless hand over. I look forward to working with your successors. 

We are also indebted to Roger Eagles who has continued with his representation of NZMS on the FINA Masters Committee and in Aquatics NZ, which he chairs. 

I’m very aware that all of these volunteers sacrifice valuable time away from their professional and personal lives for the benefit of Masters Swimming in NZ. 

It is my intention to stand down at the next election. It’s been an honour and pleasure to have represented NZMS but the organisation would benefit from new input and fresh ideas. 

John Fisher
President 2018-2019

NZMS Secretary Report 2018/19

2018/9 Secretary/Treasurer’s Report to NZMS AGM, 22nd November 2019

The 2018/9 financial review will be placed on the NZ Charities Commission website

Our membership is now managed through the Swimming NZ database. For every $60 membership fee per Masters swimmer, an affiliation fee of $10 per swimmer was paid to Swimming NZ up until 30th June 2019. This has now been increased to $10.20 per swimmer from 1st July 2019. From 1st January 2018 until 30th June 2018 existing and new Masters swimmers were offered free membership, so no membership revenue was collected during this period. The balance of $23,394.29 at the 1st January 2018 dropped to $7058.36 at the 30th June 2018.

Online entry fee payments to sanctioned meeting began of 1/8/2017. Swimming NZ reimburses NZ Masters Swimming who in turn reimburses the hosting club. Payments from Swimming NZ are made every two weeks in the NZMS account and so a clear ledger of payments is immediately available on the database. For me personally that has been a great help.

Revenue for 2018 came mainly from subscriptions. Subscriptions were paid by cheques or by direct credit into the NZMS account by club secretaries/treasurers. Online entry fees to meetings were transferred by direct credit by Swimming NZ into the NZ Masters swimming account. These fees were subsequently transferred to the accounts of hosting clubs. This year, sanction fees and medal costs were waived for our Masters events; South Island SC, North Island SC and National SC. The hosting of Masters Swimming events remains problematic with very few club offering to host meetings. From experience, once a Masters club has established a good working relationship with their local Swimming club and Aquatic Centre, hosting a meeting is rewarding.

The 2018 review, but I have summarized the main figures as follow:

1) Total revenue for 2018 was $43,548, cost of sales was $6,129 and the total income was $37,113

2) Total expenses were $42,874

3) Therefore, the net profit (loss) was - $5761

4) Equity at start of year was $73,700; equity at end of year was $71,063

5) Total current assets are $66,799; total current liabilities are -$4264; therefore, net assets are $71,063

Up to 30th June 2019 the main figures are as follows:

1) Total revenue was $47,963, cost of sales was $8,499 and the total income was $39,464.

2) Total expenses were $52,937

3) Therefore, the net profit (loss) was - $13,473

4) Equity and assets can not be calculate until 31st December 2019.

NZMS operates a cheque account for the day to day income and expenses transactions, a Fast Saver savings account and a Savings Plus account.

On January 1st 2018 the cheque account balance was $23,394.29, on January 1st 2019 the balance was $11,757.68 and on July 1st 2019 the balance was $4,207.60

On January 1st 2018 the Savings Plus account balance was $43,380.31 and on July 1st 2019 the balance was $44,824.95

On January 1st 2017 the Fast Saver account balance was $677.23 and on July 1st 2019 the balance was 678.29

The revenue lost to NZ Masters Swimming, since the transfer to the new database, is significant. What used to be $60 per swimmer to NZMS has dropped to $49.80 per swimmer. This has coincided with a decrease in the membership number since online membership payment was introduced 2 years ago. From correspondence with club secretaries or with individual members, many swimmers have not come to grasp with the new system. Passwords are forgotten and there is reluctance of some swimmers to tackle the online payment system. Once Liz Davidson or I explain the process or help individual swimmers to negotiate the online process there is a more positive response from swimmers about the new process. I still receive cheques for membership fees from individual members, direct credits, into the NZ Masters Swimming account, from clubs (some club secretaries update swimmers financial status, others leave it to me to update swimmers profiles).

Further revenue loss has come from the AGM2016 decision to waive sanction fees and the cost of medals at sanctioned events. This was to encourage more clubs to host swim meetings but this has not been a success.

NZMS now has 50 clubs throughout New Zealand with swimmer’s profiles. To date 647 swimmer’s profiles have been added to the database and the financial membership is 481 (673 financial members in 2017 and 710 financial members in 2016). 62% of financial swimmers belong to the Northern Region.

The monthly newsletter reaches all registered swimmers by MailChimp and we are pleased to advertise any other swimming events that involve the participation of Masters swimmers. The sanctioned pool meetings included the North Island (Whakatane Masters) and South Island Short Course (Ashburton Masters) events, the National Long Course event (Waitakere City Masters) and the Auckland Short Course Championships (Roskill Masters).

Thank you to members of the executive, John Fisher. And thank you to Andrew Gabites, Lesley Parkin, Liz Davidson, Jan O’Donnell and Liesl Ploos Van Amstel for their roles as NZMS officers and their respective services during the year.

Mike Bodger

Wednesday, 12 February 2020

Upcoming Events

2020 31st Red Beach open Water Swim: 1 March,  Entry Form

Banana Boat New Zealand Ocean Swim Series:

Generation Homes La Grande:  22 February 2020
Interislander The Big Tahuna:  7 March 2020
Generation Homes Legend of the Lake: 21 - 22 March 2020
Generation Homes Sand to Surf:  4 April 2020
Harcourts Cooper & Co Swim the Bridge: 25 April 2020

For more information visit: 

2018 Shear Magic One Hour Postal Event 2018 RESULTS

For official event results please visit

Monday, 21 October 2019

Celebrating The Life of a Great Man - Lyall Mortimer



Lyall Mortimer

24 June 1939 - 24 September 2019

With sadness, Ingrid Saxton (former President of NZMS between 1999 and 2003) and I attended the funeral service of Lyall Mortimer in Lower Hutt on 1 October 2019 and were able to speak on behalf of NZMS. Lyall had died on 26 September. 

Lyall is one of the most important figures in the history of NZ Masters Swimming. He was a former President of the Huia Masters Swimming Club which had started in 1982 and, whilst also a participant in Masters Swimming events, he quickly became known as an administrator. He was Vice-President of NZMS in 1989-1990 and 1990- 1991 and then became President of NZMS for three years in the 1992-1993, 1993- 1994 and 1994-1995 terms. Lyall represented NZMS on the New Zealand Swimming Federation Board from 1993 to 2006. This was the predecessor body to Aquatics NZ. 

Lyall was also the NZMS representative on the Hilary Commission Group on Masters Sport, chaired by the late Sir Brian Lochore but his most signal achievement was membership of the FINA Masters Swimming Committee from 1997 to 2009. In his last term he was Chairman of the' Committee, and thought to be the first New Zealander to hold such a position within FINA. In 2009 at the FINA dinner in Rome Lyall was awarded a silver pin by FINA for services to Masters Swimming. 

It was clear from the large numbers present at his funeral and the warm addresses in his memory from his t ree daughters, Chris, Ginny and Ange, that he was highly regarded as a family man. Born in Gore, Lyall had spent his early years in Southland before moving to other parts ,,of the South Island and then later the North Island before eventually settling in Lower Hutt. When he retired he worked for the Ministry of Health as an OSH inspector. Family melnbers spoke of his ability to fix anything about the house, his ability to rebuild a car engine and his habit of hoarding nuts and bolts and various other items in his garage. This likeable and capable man made a huge contribution to Masters Swimming in NZ and will be fondly remembered. 

He is survived by his wife, Dawn, and, as mentioned, his three daughters. 

Ed Evelly, Secretary of the FINA Masters Committee sent his condolences. He and his wife, Claudine, had holidayed with Lyall and Dawn and had become very good friends. 

In his later years Lyall was affected by Parkinson's and suffered from cancer but nevertheless lived to the fine age of 80 years. 

Roger Eagles

Tuesday, 17 September 2019

Hyogo Prefecture Masters Swimming Championships in Kobe City

Last year, Swimming NZ signed a ‘friendship agreement’ with Kobe City in Japan. As part of this relationship, Kobe City has informed Swimming NZ that it would like to provide NZD$10,000 to enable four (4) NZ Masters swimmers to attend the 2019 Hyogo Prefecture Masters Swimming Championships in Kobe City on Sunday 4 August. The $10,000 was split four ways to help cover flights, accommodation and race entries.

NZMS selected Oli Lusk from Tasman Gold Masters Nelson, Debbie Hambly from Raumati Masters, Steve Prescott from Dunedin Masters and Chris Bishop from Waitakere Masters, to attend the Swimming Championships.

Read what Oli, Deb and Christopher had to say about the Championship:

"Firstly, I want to say a massive thank you to Kazuko Tapper, our Cultural Liaison Officer, for sorting us out with everything we needed and being so quick to help whenever we had questions. The trip couldn't have gone smoother without her!
Also, I just wanted to say how blown away we all were with the hospitality shown to us by Mr Miyazaki and the rest of the team. They made us feel so welcome in their country! The swimming competition itself was such a lot of fun and so well run (I wish it could have been longer than just one day!). We were really well looked after, and we had three fantastic English-speaking students to help us get to our events on time and answer any questions we might have. They even bought us all lunch to keep us going during the day! One thing I particularly liked was the tradition of bowing to the officials and crowd before and after racing! I know we all want to come back in 2021!
The dinner afterwards was fantastic! We went to a Chinese restaurant near the pool, where we got to meet some of the officials from the competition. Again, the hospitality was incredible.

Outside of the swimming, having 3 full days to explore Kobe and Kyoto (via the amazing bullet train!) was fantastic! I really enjoyed getting immersed in a culture quite different to ours in NZ. We covered some serious distance on foot and I was absolutely knackered by the end (largely due to the heat!).

Lastly I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed getting to know Chris, Steve and Deb. They are a great bunch of people and I hope to keep in contact with them. This whole experience has really motivated me to keep up my training and set new goals! I've got to be fighting fit for 2021 now 😉
Oli Lusk

"The trip to Japan was absolutely amazing., and an experience that i will remember for a very long time. The four of us from New Zealand who had not met before have made lasting friendships , and of course the way Kaz Tapper took care of everything was simply outstanding.

The Swim Meet was run as you would expect like clock work, and i believe there was close to 600 competitors on the day. Our little team of four did exceptionally well , with Oli, and Deb, both picking up GOLDS.

In order to actually get to the starting blocks, you had to go via a four tiered process with officials checking and identifying swimmers along the way. The officials couldnt have done any more for us on the day, which is a great advert for 2021, and which all four of us have identified as a must do.

We stayed at The Pearl City Harbour Hotel , which was probably a 10 to 15 minute walk from the pool , and in a very quite part of the city. During our time we took the opportunity to explore Kobe , and also visited Kyoto.

The temp, was in the high thirties most days, and unusually hot, so we certainly got through a large quantities of water and energy type drinks."
Finally I would like to thank Swimming NZ for this opportunity which i feel we were all privileged to experience. I am certianly keen to participate in many more competitions."
 Christopher Bishop

"I arrived in Kobe by bullet train taking in the famed Mount Fuji on the way thanks to the great value 7 day JR pass. I felt like a VIP with my name on a placard to help me find our host. Kazuko Topper, our Swim NZ contact was our virtual real life guardian angel – not that we needed any protection – Japan is super safe. When I needed to withdraw cash and get some dinner my first night, she would send route maps faster than I could look them up on my goggle maps.

I didn’t need to look far to find either food or travellers provisions at any 7-11, which were dotted seemingly everywhere. With a high population and excellent transport infrastructure the food was always super fresh. For between $5 and $7 NZD I could buy any number of ready to eat meals, which would re-heat on the spot.

The hotel’s massive buffet breakfast included food from at least 5 different cultures, in addition to a

Western offering. I discovered that soup and seaweed and salad for breakfast is awesome. I found myself constantly taking photographs of food, real or plastic! We took in the miraculous vertical positions of divine looking deserts and huge varieties of food in storefronts. Plastic food is a fine art in Japan so one is easily tempted! Apparently Kobe is the 2nd best place in Japan for desserts (not to mention the famous Steaks).
While exploring, we took breaks in the local cafes. Ice-creams were everywhere and so were 2L bottles of a popular electrolyte drink called ‘Sweat.’ I think the drink would need a rebranding in NZ, but when the weather app showed the temp “feeling like 39 degrees” our English speaking teammates ignored the name and just kept hydrated! We took a subway, bus and tram to reach Rokko Mountain’s spectacular harbour views of and more cold deserts and drinks.

The night before the meet we took in a reconnaissance swim, purchasing tickets from a vending machine and stored our gear in the free lockable units, which are literally at every tourist attraction and train station in Japan. We had the 50-meter ten lane pool to share with one or two others!

For dinner we spotted an Ikea store not far from the hotel, and given we couldn’t bring any furniture home I convinced the others we could at least have a hearty meal in cheerful cafeteria- style restaurant.

The next morning we arrived at the giant pool complex after a ten minute walk. The meet programme was entirely in Japanese except for the event numbers, participant ages and our names! We were able to follow the meet programme without help as the times were accurate.

We were warmly welcomed with cheers by the crowd thanks to the message on the huge digital board. We had no idea the level of competition other than that there were 600 entries. The meet was brilliantly organised with a waiting area where you could stretch until your heat was called followed by 5 martially mats for stretching. Everyone was super friendly even if they couldn’t speak English and some could speak other shared languages (French) so we had lots of great exchanges and trading of swim gear.

My first race was going to be my best shot as it was the longest race (200IM). I had seen some of my competitors’ times from the heat before and I had a few more in my heat. My team-mates captured my name and my (slowest of all by a second) reaction time off the adjustable starting blocks. However, I caught up took first. In my other events (100 Fly and 100 Free) I came in 2nd place.

Later, in foyer area I noted each team had basketfuls of certificates. I found beautiful certificates, one with a summary of my 3 races including splits, and another gilded in gold print with beautiful Japanese calligraphy. When I retrieved the second one, the volunteers made a big deal brought out a beautifully packed medal. Kazuko later messaged that I had also achieved a meet record. However, when I expressed my surprise she did note that this meet had not been going for very long.

That evening our hosts walked us to another lovely restaurant with a beautiful buffet dinner complete with a variety of local desserts. We had another medal and certificate presentation with officials from the Kobe Swimming office.

It was a whirlwind few days in Kobe that had the perfect balance between sightseeing, trying local food, meeting new people and swimming!"

Deborah Hambly

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