Mark Treffers
Personal information
Full nameMark Ferdinand Treffers
Born (1953-12-16) 16 December 1953 (age 68)
Invercargill, New Zealand
Height1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)
RelativesBen Treffers (son)
ClubWharenui Swimming Club, Christchurch

Mark Ferdinand Treffers (born 16 December 1953) is a former swimming representative from New Zealand and 1974 Commonwealth Games gold medalist who specialised in long distance freestyle and medley races.[1]

He was born in Invercargill and was taught to swim at the Waverly Swimming Club before moving to Christchurch to train at the Wharenui Swim Club under legendary New Zealand coach Pic Parkhouse.[2]

Commonwealth Games

At the 1970 British Commonwealth Games held in Edinburgh, he won the bronze medal in the 1500 m freestyle in a time of 16:44.69.

At the 1974 British Commonwealth Games held in Christchurch, he won the gold medal in the men's 400m Individual Medley on the same day fellow New Zealander and Wharenui team-mate Jaynie Parkhouse won a gold medal in the 800m Freestyle.[3] Treffers would go on to claim a silver medal in the men's 1500m Freestyle, his main race, as he become just the seventh man in history to break 16 minutes finishing behind Australian Stephen Holland.

Olympic Games

He competed at both the 1972 and 1976 Summer Olympics with his best result being 6th place in the 1500 m at the 1972 Munich Olympic Games.

British Championship

Despite being from New Zealand he won the 'Open' British Championship over 880 yards freestyle[4] and the 1970 1650 yards freestyle title.[5]

Personal life

Treffers studied law at the University of Canterbury while training for the Commonwealth Games before becoming a lawyer in Australia after retiring from swimming.[3]

Marks son Ben Treffers represented Australia in swimming, winning a gold medal in the 50m Backstroke at the 2014 Glasglow Commonwealth Games.

Mark Treffers Drive in New Brighton and Treffers Road in Wigram are named after him.

See also


  1. ^ - Mark Treffers
  2. ^ Cousins, John (18 January 2017). "Commonwealth Games coaching legend Pic Parkhouse dies". Bay of Plenty Times. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  3. ^ a b Smith, Tony (29 January 2014). "The day a fired-up Parkhouse struck gold". Stuff. Retrieved 29 August 2019.
  4. ^ ""Swimming." Times, 6 Aug. 1970, p. 10". Times Digital Archive.
  5. ^ ""Swimming." Times, 10 Aug. 1970, p. 10". Times Digital Archive.