EP’s top junior surfers ready to shine at Champs in Durbs
Most of South Africa’s best junior surfers, including several top Eastern Province surfers, will compete at Durban’s New Pier between 4-9 October to attempt to claim individual titles, plus ensure their province’s teams win the coveted Freedom Cup.
The Hurley SA Junior Champs is hosted by Surfing South Africa in partnership with the KZN Central Surfing Association. More than 150 surfers representing nine teams from eight provinces will compete for national honours.
Robin de Kock, GM of Surfing SA, says this is the most important junior event on the Surfing South Africa calendar. “Not only does the event showcase the talents of the country’s best junior surfers between the ages of 10-17, but it also prepares them for the next step up. This is where champions are spotted and where their talents are developed, and we are stoked that Hurley SA and Durban have come on board as sponsors.”
Hurley SA Marketing Manager Liam Wood says: “We hope to have a positive impact upon junior surfing in SA.”
Age categories that will be contested include boys and girls Under 13, U15 and U17. Jordy Maree (Western Province), who has already established himself as one of the top juniors in the country by winning a host of junior events the last few years, will be back to defend his boys U13 title. Another surfer who will looking to defend the title won at last year’s event is Sarah Baum (KZN Central) who claimed the Girls U17 title.
Eastern Province’s Gina Smith, who claimed the Girls U15 title in 2010, will be wanting a victory in the Girls U17 division this year, as will last year’s Girls U13 winner Chanelle Botha (Southern KZN). Other surfers eyeing titles include Steffen Burrows (Boys U15, Boland), plus Eastern Province duo and U17 Boys and Girls finalists from last year Steven Sawyer and Emma Smith.
Winners of the Boys and Girls U17 competitors, as well as the U15 Boys surfers will be crowned 2011 SA Champions. All three surfers will receive their green national team blazers and their national colours at an award ceremony on completion of the last Final (9 October).
Surfers from the eight provincial teams plus a SA development team (hosts KZN Central, defending champions Western Province, Eastern Province, Border, Southern KZN, Boland, Zululand, Southern Cape) will all want to claim the Freedom Cup. First presented on National Freedom Day at the SA Junior Champs in East London in 2004, the Freedom Cup is won by the team who collectively accumulate the most points over the course of the entire event.
This year’s Champs will also feature a Red Bull Air Show and a Tag Team contest between participating teams. The Red Bull Air Show will offer a prize of R5000 to the surfer who completes the most impressive aerial manoeuvre.