The Northern Cape in conjunction with the South African Water Ski Federation will host the 2013 European and African Barefoot Water Ski Championships at the Northern Cape Aquatic Sports Club at Riverton near Kimberley from 23-26 October 2013. This will be the first time that the event takes place on South African soil.
The prestigious international extreme sport event will see representatives from countries such as Austria, France, Finland, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Netherlands, Belgium, Austria and host country South Africa will be taking to the water to prove their supremacy.
The first South African Barefoot Championships were held in 1976. Since 1992, South Africa has competed in all the world championship events and most of the European and African championships in various countries. Last year, South Africa finished fourth overall in the Junior World Championships and seventh overall in the Open World Championships.
Several South African skiers hold championship titles or world records. Nadine de Villiers, who have won eight world barefoot records as well as ten gold medals and twelve Europe/Africa Championships gold medals, was recently conducted into the International Waterski and Wakeboard Federation’s International Hall of Fame.
South African skiers have been making their mark in the sport and Free State skier Garth Strydom is currently ranked fifth in the world withShianneAddinallfrom Gauteng currently in sixth position on the international rankings. The South African squad consists of Garth Strydom, Manie Pickard, Laurent Bauwens, Warren Nel, Nicholas Freel, ShianneAddinall, Pieter Terblanche, Laurent Bauwens, DJ Meyer, Dylan Sparrow and Matthew Kirby.
According to Sharron Lewis, CEO of the Northern Cape Tourism Authority, this is once again a perfect opportunity for the province to showcase its capacity for hosting world-class sporting events. “Kimberley has proven that it has the required infrastructure and logistical expertise to host mega-events that will further its position as the premier adventure sports destination in Africa. This event will also serve as a platform to launch our bid for the 2016 World Barefoot Waterski Championships, so we’ll definitely be pulling out all the stops to highlight the unique and diverse attractions of the Northern Cape and the warm hospitality of its people,” explains Lewis.
Tourism offerings that participants and their supporters can explore during their stay in Kimberley include numerous national parks and game reserves, places of interest such as the Big Hole Museum Complex, Magersfontein Battlefields and the Wildebeest Kuil Rock Art Centre. Numerous restaurants and a great variety of accommodation options are also available.
For more information, visit www.experiencenortherncape.com or call Lesley Bauser 0828297824.