Some of South Africa’s top skateboarders came from Port Elizabeth, Cape Town, Durban and Bloemfontein to participate in the Core Downhill Sokkie Jol, presented by Sector9, in Jeffreys Bay.
The downhill race, part of the inaugural Jeffreys Bay Winter Festival that ended yesterday (Sunday), was held down a steep street in the Eastern Cape Town. The vibrant atmosphere was further enhanced by a visit from Afrikaans rap legend Jack Parow, who played a gig later that night.
The fastest time for the downhill course was achieved by top longboard rider Kyle Vollaers, who won R3,000 in cash. A prize of R1,000 went to the Longest Toeside Standup Slide – won by Tom Rushovich, who also won R1,000 for the Longest Heelside Standup Slide.
The Longest Puckdown Slide went to Mitch Blackburn, while the Best Trick Over Box Jump going to Andrew Nero. The puckdown resembles a surfing slash when the rider’s feet slide out and his hand hits the water, or in this case, tarmac (using a special glove with built-in breakpad).
One skater, Plunky, from Johannesburg, a student who has just finished his architectural studies, came down on the bus to join in the festivities, such was the commitment by skateboarders who came from far and wide to participate.
Sponsor and organiser Koffie Jacobs from Core Surf and Skate Shop thanked the community for the support, saying it was an awesome day for skateboarding development in the Eastern Cape.
There had been a huge evolution in skill levels in the Eastern Cape over the last 2 years, particularly in longboarding, which was undergoing a boom in gear and clothing sales, and uptake by youngsters learning to skate.
The special hybrid course was unique in that obstacles such as cones, ramps and berms were open to all types of skateboards, which had the longboarders nervous.
Longboard riders ‘carved’ with speed down the hill, crouching through a ‘tube’ and some even trying jumps and grinds reserved for shortboaders.
The shortboards were adept at the tricks, but struggled to get the speed for carving.
Jacobs said it was more about the fun with many of the riders dressed in disco clothing and sporting false afros.