Race Rules

1. Swimmers must attend their race briefing. All race briefings will be held 10 minutes prior to the start of their race.


2. Swimmers must start the race within the designated are as indicated in the race briefing.


3. In the epic recreational events wetsuits are not compulsory but are recommend for first time swimmers and swimmers not accustomed to swimming in cold open water. In the New Zealand Open Water Championships the races are run under FINA Rules (see below).


4. Swim caps are compulsory and will be supplied at the registration.


5. Swimmers must be capable of completing the full distance that they have entered.
If you are unsure of your ability enter a shorter race.


6. Epic swimmers must round buoys as instructed in the race-briefing. Disqualification may occur if this rule is not abided by.

7. Un-sportsmanlike behaviours will not be permitted and will result in disqualification.


8. All wetsuits must be treated for didymo at registration; this will involve the suit being dunked.


9. Swim paddles and fins are NOT permitted.


10. Epic Swimmers are not permitted to have support craft on or around the course.


11. The organiser has/holds the right to remove or prevent someone from starting or completing the event at their discretion, and any decision made by Epic personnel is ULTIMATE AND FINAL.


12. If conditions are not appropriate for the safe undertaking of the event, it may be delayed, moved to a different course or cancelled. Participants in the Saturday events must be prepared to swim on Sunday if the conditions are not appropriate.


13. Membership to a SNZ club is not a requirement to participate in recreational Epic Swim events. To participate in the NZ Open Water Championships you must be a current member of a SNZ club.


14. If you require assistance during the swim or observe any other athlete in distress raise one arm so our water safety personnel can assist.


15. After your race briefing all swimmers must enter the water through the start chute prior to heading out to the deep water start. Participant must swipe their timing clips on the timing mats to give us an accurate record of the exact swimmers in the water.

16. Do not swim over people, if you wish to get ahead of a swimmer, swim around them not over them.


Wetsuits can be worn in all Epic Swim events, but are not compulsory.
Starting on September 2016, the following FINA rules will apply for the wearing of wetsuits for the New Zealand Open Water Championships:

      - Between 16°C and 18°C, wetsuits + bathing cap are mandatory
      - Between 18°C and 20°C, wetsuits are optional
      - Over 20°C, wetsuits are not allowed.

Swimming New Zealand would like to thank the Tuwharetoa Maori Trust Board for providing access to Lake Taupo. Please help us protect the future of Lake Taupo from Didymo and other pest. Wetsuits can very easily carry the Didymo disease and other pests picked up from other water ways around the world. Lake Taupo is currently Didymo free and with your support it can stay this way for many more years. With the support of the Department of Conservation all athletes must have their wetsuits dipped prior to registration.