Cole Classic Swim - Manly

Graham Cole was a keen ocean swimmer, regularly swimming and body surfing at Bondi Beach. In 1981 he travelled to Hawaii with a team from the Tattersals Club to swim in the Waikiki Roughwater. He returned with a desire to establish a similar event in Sydney, reasoning that Australian beaches and strong beach culture were deserving of such an event and that it should be open to all members of the community who had done the necessary training.

Date: February 6, 2022
Event Website:
Address: Manly

Cole Classic Swim - Manly

In 1982 Graham wrote;

The event is not a race but a challenge to all persons to stretch themselves in body and mind to swim a reasonable distance through surf. It will, I hope, be an incentive to persons to involve themselves in the self-discipline required to get fit; obtain confidence in their ability through swimming, to achieve a pride in having performed something that is, perhaps slightly above average, and finally to receive (in the form of an appropriately prepared Certificate or medal) some recognition of their accomplishment.

In 1983 the first Cole Classic was swum with 101 swimmers participating.

The Cole Classic moved to Manly in 2005. Manly LSC was the surf club where, as a young man, Graham Cole patrolled and was awarded his surf life saving bronze medallion. The wonderful location at Manly Beach has allowed for the introduction of the 1km Novice Challenge to see the event truly flourish.