Skateboarders from across the country will descend on Cape Town this weekend (5-6 September) when the Skateboarding for Hope tour presented by VANS pulls into Canal Walk for its final stop of the year.
This will be the last chance for local skateboarders to score a wild card entry into the skateboarding world championships at the Kimberley Diamond Cup presented by Kumba Iron Ore, which will be taking place in the capital city of the Northern Cape Province from 7 – 10 October. Professional and amateur skateboarders from around the globe will participate in the street, team and vert contests for the massive prize purse and world champion title in each discipline.
According to John Block, MEC for Finance, Economic Development and Tourism for the Northern Cape Province, the Kimberley Diamond Cup has created the opportunity for the youth of South Africa to express themselves in an uplifting and positive manner. “Events such as these create mass participation in a sport that also supports economic development. The benefits of the Kimberley Diamond Cup are also not isolated to the Northern Cape, but actually has a ripple effect throughout South Africa as it delivers a boost to the local tourism industry wherever we host events and activations,” explains Block.
On Saturday, the programme starts with an open skate session, followed by free skateboarding lessons and an Indigo skate clinic. The qualifying rounds for the Top Grom (13 and under) and Open division (14 and older) start from 15h00 and plenty of action will go down during the best trick contest at 17h30.
Organisers are expecting the Cape skateboarding community to be out in full force to support local riders such as Jean-Marc Johannes, Shuaib Philander, Alan Marola and youngster Tyler Kammies. A large contingent of under 13 skaters are expected to turn up as the top five previously unqualified Top Grom skaters will earn entries intro to the KDC main event in Kimberley.
The Canal Walk Centre Court will be transformed for the weekend with custom-built ramps, ledges, rails and half-pipes. The location of the temporary skate park in the heart of the mall creates an arena-like atmosphere with perfect vantage points from the food court and upper level.
On Sunday, the Hyprop Foundation will be hosting kids who will be introduced to the wonderful world of skateboarding when Skateboarding for Hope crew will show them some basic skating skills and tricks and hand out free skateboards and merchandise. The Top Grom finals start at 13h30 followed by the Open finals at 14h00. The best trick contest will leave the crowds cheering for more from 15h00 with the day ending on a high note with the prize-giving at 15h20. Finally, skate fans will be able to try out the fantastic course during a free skate session.