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A Full Day Of Action At The JBay Winterfest


Words: Craig Jarvis

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Jeffreys Bay - it was a full day of action sports today, as the JBay Winterfest kicked into gear. Skating, surfing, swimming and fishing amongst other activities took place, as event organisers embraced the influx of competitors and fans alike.

Windy conditions and icy 11 degree Celsius water greeted some of South Africa’s most extreme swimmers, who gathered at Marina Martinique to take on the JBay Cold Water Classic.

Seven swimmers, all adhering to Channel rules, which meant that they could only wear a speedo, goggles and a swim cap, started the 7.5 K swim – however only three managed to finish! “It was cold out there but I settled down and actually enjoyed the chilly water," said eventual winner Rebecca Newman, who completed her first cold water swim in just over two hours. The tough conditions got the better of four of the starters in the 7.5 K, who all voluntarily withdrew from the race at either the 2.5 K or the 5 K mark.

“We are happy to have established the Marina Martinique as a legitimate cold water swim venue and are stoked that swimmers from all over South Africa made the trip to Jeffreys Bay for the event,” said organiser Brenton Williams.

The National Kite Festival took place at Kabeljous Beach, with a giant shark, teddy bears and a huge octopus kite in the skies. The Kite Festival was hugely popular amongst the kids in attendance, and will continue tomorrow.

The 2014 Core Downhill Sokkie Jol presented by Sector 9 kicked off on a sunny but windy winter's day in JBay. There were over 80 riders taking part from around the county all gunning to be crowned the 2014 Sokkie Jol champ. The course was positioned on a slight downhill with one left hand corner. Ramps were assembled down the length of the run, consisting of a massive drop-in ramp, banks, rollers, tunnel and kicker jump. Skaters found the course rather intimidating initially due to the scale of the obstacles but quickly became accustomed to the ramps.

Some of the stand outs form the day were the likes of Ren Van Staden, Cam Adams, Alex Meyer and many more. Starting the competitive skating with time trail we saw Ren Van Staden taking the number one spot shortly followed by Cam Adams Adams and Jason Brown respectively.

The Highlights of the event was definitely the two-man race heats. Final heats proved to be a challenging affair between Alex Meyer And Ren Van Staden crossing the finish line closely.

Time Trail
1st Ren Van Staden
2nd Cam Adams
3rd Jason Brown

Junior Division
1st Tyron Coetzee
2nd Tristan Baymen
3rd Johan De Vos

Open Devision
1st Alex Meyer
2nd Ren Van Staden
3rd Cam Adams

In the JBay Open, the rest of round 2 was run off at Supers in small but perfect surf. CJ Hobgood (USA) had a tight heat against Tiago Pires (PRT) with the goofy-footed Hobgood getting the nod at the end of the heat. In heat 11 Hawaiian surfer Freddy Patacchia came up against South African Travis Logie in an action-packed heat. Freddy picked up on one excellent wave and got a long clean backhand barrel for a 9.93 ride and the heat win.

The JBay Skins Fishing event was another success. Saturday dawned with light northwesterly winds which went southwest and strong. Despite the unfavourable conditions, many anglers showed up along the beach from the rocks left of the main beach, to The Gap at Kabeljous Estuary. The clear water, out-going tide and windy conditions had everyone expecting slow pickings. Most anglers lightened their tackle and went smaller on their baits, targeting small edibles. Just 30 minutes into the competition an angler with this setup hooked into huge black ray that kept him busy for at close on two hours.

The event was once again run as a skins event, with R1500 for the biggest fish, for every hour. Other species caught included, steenbras, cob, mussel cracker and black tail.

Over 80 riders took part in the JBay WinterFest Funduro today near Mentoorskraal, just outside Jeffreys Bay. There were some serious tumbles with one young rider (10 yrs old) taking a serious fall along the obstacle course. To the delight of the crowd, she got back onto her bike and carried on riding!

Andrew Wren, a national motor cross competitor, displayed his riding skills and wowed the crowd at the Slake pit obstacle course.

“We had two special stages along the Funduro route with the quarry stage causing more riders to fall than stay on the bike,” said organiser Roche Smit. With 40 lucky draw prizes on offer, the Funduro was enjoyed by all with many riders already talking about next year’s event.