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Archive for the ‘South Africa Tourism’ Category

Marathon Swimming a hit in Jeffreys Bay

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Despite a cold wind and overcast conditions, over 60 hard core swimmers took to the canals of Marina Martinique in Jeffreys Bay on Sunday to participate in the inaugural Kouga Express EP Open Water Swim Series (OWSS)

Mike Marais winner of the 5km swim wordpress

Michael Marais, winner of the 5 km open water swim at Marina Martinique Jeffreys Bay

Competitors had a choice between a 5 km, 3 km or a 1 km swim and three swimmers chose to compete in the grueling 5 km swim.  Michael Marais eventually took top honours in the 5 km, swimming a South African national qualifying time of 1:03:16

Marais said after the race that is was a tough swim and his back was hurting but he wanted to swim a qualifying time early in the season and had to power until the finish buoy to achieve his goal.

Jessica Roux took the 5 km women’s race in 1:07:10 which is also a SA national qualifying time.  Rebecca Newman had a good swim in her first ever 5 km swim and recorded a credible 1:11:26 and with some more experience, should swim a qualifying time this season.

The 3 km swim was well supported with swimmers battling it out through the Marina Martinique canals.  Local residents cheered from their houses as the competitors did a circular route in the canals. Jonathan Roux (15 yrs) won the swim in 42 minutes from Mickey Falco.  Tammy Geyer (17yrs) was the first woman home in 44:43.

Richard Jute won the Masters race with local swim coach Brenton Williams coming second.  Both Jute and Williams swam South African national open water qualifying times.  Marina Barnard, also from Jeffreys Bay was the first woman master swimmer to finish.

The 1 km swim saw 16 local swimmers take to the water and the youngsters dominated the boys U/13 division with Seth de Swart (10yrs) winning from Kendal Wright (12yrs) and Pieter Ellis (8yrs) coming third.  Competing against the older boys, Ellis showed his has the potential to become a good open water swimmer in time to come.

The youngest girl swimmer to take part in the 1 km event was 8 yr old Alexa Vaughn from Port Elizabeth, who managed to complete the course.  “I didn’t think it would be so far when I entered but I just did some breastroke and freestyle and then sprinted the last 200m to the end of the race”, said Vaughn.  “I will be back in Jeffreys Bay next month to finish my next 1 km”, she added.

Brenton Williams, coach of the Kouga Swim Club, based in Jeffreys Bay was very happy with the turn out for the first swim of the series that will see six swims take place in the Marina during the next six months.  “Open water swimming is one of the fastest growing extreme sports in the world and interest is growing after the inclusion of the 10 km marathon swim in the Olympic Games”.

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(Above: South Africa’s Natalie du Toit in action in the women’s 10 km marathon swim at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games)

“Open water swimmers must be ready to compete in all weather and water conditions which adds to the challenge of swimming long distances.  The EP OWSS is designed to nurture swimmers along until they are ready to compete in the 10 km event, which is only open to swimmers of 16 years and older”, said Williams.

Mike Zoetmulder from Zports who organized the event said, “This event is an exciting initiative to grow open water swimming in the Eastern Cape and EP Aquatics together with the Kouga Swim Club have put together a great 6-part Series which will take place in the pristine canals of Jeffreys Bay’s Marina Martinique this summer. With one event a month planned for the Marina, we hope to see hundreds of social swimmers coming down and taking part in this fantastic Series”.

Swimmers who want to prepare for the next EP OWSS event which will take part on 22 November at Marina Martinique can swim a 1km or a 2 km in the Ocean Racing Series which will take place on Sunday in Port Elizabeth.  Entries can be done online at

The Kouga Swim Club holds training sessions in the Marina Martinique canals on Monday and Wednesday mornings at 7 am for adult swimmers and Friday afternoons at 15.15 for all age groups.  Non members are welcome to attend and details can be obtained by emailing

More information about open water swimming can be found at:


Artists against crime

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Renowned Jeffreys Bay artist Stephen Bibb has joined the war against crime in Jeffreys Bay. Stephen has donated one of his paintings that will be given to an individual or an organization that has signed up as a member of the J’Bay Community Police Forum (CPF) by the end of June 2009.

“Safety and security is an extremely emotive issue in this country, it is time that we all started coming together as communities and taking back the streets from this scourge that is sucking the life from this land” said Bibb, who is well known for his surf art.

Ocean Dreams

(above: Stephen Bibb oil painting on board.  Ocean dreams)

He urged people to join up with the CPF “We are realizing very swiftly that the only way to stand up against these cowardly gangsters and brutal thugs, who prey on the decent and largely defenceless public, relying largely on our fear and our apathy, is to become involved in defending our communities in any way that we can”.

“By joining the CPF and getting on the mailing list that’ll keep you up to date on what’s really happening in your community in the fight against crime.

Becoming more vigilant and security-conscious, all of us will be contributing to the solution and helping the dedicated men and women who make our town and ultimately our country a safe place for all of us”.

Check out Stephen’s art at his website at

Showdown at Supertubes, JBay……..

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The invitees for the Xcel Supertubes Showdown have been announced.  All 16 have earned their spurs in the surf hierachy in Jeffreys Bay and will be competed for the opportunity to surf against the top 44 surfers in the world in the 09 Billabong Pro in July.  


Heat draw for the Xcel Supertubes Showdown:


Heat 1
Warren Dean    
Ashley Walter                 
Ari Kraak
Steven Sawyer
Heat 2
Ryan Payne
Stuart Shelver
Dane Morris
Dominique Abersalie
Heat 3
Craig Els
Stanley Badger
Drew Thysman
Remi Petersen
Heat 4
Deon Lategan
Berti Stuurman
Nick van Eeden
Dylan Lightfoot


Who was the J Bay local dishing out tequila instead of snot klaps until the early morning hours at the opening function of the Xcel Supertubes Showdown in J’Bay? 

The J'Bay locals who have been invited to compete in the Xcel Supertubes Showdown 


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House breakings remained the biggest problem for crime fighters in Jeffreys Bay during May. The good news is that the number of reported cases has dropped nearly 30 % since the peak in April.

 This drop can be attributed to the efforts of the Neighbourhood Watches, the Police, the Security Companies and the CPF who have all combined in ensuring criminals do not find easy pickings in Jeffreys Bay.

 The vast majority of house breakings took place in Pellsrus/Ocean View and Wavecrest. Most of the breakings occurred between 12 pm at night and 6 am in the morning. Robbers generally gained entrance through windows, sliding doors or forced burglar bars open.

 The theft of motor vehicles remained a problem with syndicates from out of town moving into Jeffreys Bay and stealing cars. This means that it is difficult crime to prevent, with visible policing being the best method the Law Enforcement agencies have at their disposal.

 Theft of possessions out of motor vehicles spiked again during May and many times residents made it easier for criminals by leaving valuables lying in open view in their cars. Guest house owners are also urged to warn their guests to avoid becoming victims of crime in our town.

 CPF members who join the Police in special operations were given a boost during May when local surf company Billabong sponsored 30 T – shirts for the volunteers to wear when fighting crime in the town.


The Aston Bay Neighbourhood Watch also sponsored the CPF with a radio, car decals and lights for two vehicles to ensure more visible policing.

J Bay Locals in Supertubes Showdown

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Surfers in Jeffreys Bay have closely guarded their beaches and their waves since the 1960’s when the small fishing village was discovered to possess one of the finest right hand point breaks in the world.


In the 1980’s the Supers locals decided that there would only be once contest a year at Supertubes. The Billabong Pro cracked the nod as the annual contest and the surf break remained the domain of the free surfers for the rest of the year.


However, the J’ Bay locals have been debating for decades on how to hold a contest for locals only, that would see a few surfers in the water, riding the long winding walls of Supertubes in uncrowded and classic conditions.


The Xcel Supertubes Showdown is the first contest of its kind in the Mecca of surfing in South Africa and will cater for 16 locals who have paid their dues within the J’Bay surf hierarchy.


Koffie Jacobs, a long time Supertubes maestro and founder member of the JBU Surf Club will announce the 16 invitees to the inaugural Xcel Supertubes Showdown at the opening function at the Mexican Restaurant in Jeffrey’s Bay on Wednesday.


Jacobs said the contest is for the local surfers and the invitees will see the likes of up and coming youngster Stephen Sawyer pit his skills against old guard surfers including former world tour campaigner Warren Dean and ex Springbok Craig Els.


“The contest has a waiting period from 5 June – 21 June and will take one day of surfing to complete. Four surfers will be in the water in 45 minute heats with the winner of each heat advancing to an hour long final. The JBU will provide the water patrol” said Jacobs, who is the contest director.


The winner will earn a slot in the Von Zipper Wildcard Trials that will be held on the opening day of the 09 Billabong Pro. The winner of the Von Zipper Trials gets a slot in the main event of the Billabong Pro. Warren Dean is hard in training
for the Supertubes Showdown and there will be no quarter asked or given in this unique contest.

(Below:  Dylan Lighfoot about to smash the lip at Supertubes, Jeffreys Bay.  Photo:  Koffie Jacobs)


Dylan Lightfoot (14 yrs) was stoked to hear he has been invited “I learnt to surf at Main Beach when I was 5 with South Coast Surf School and have worked my way up into the Supers line up over the years, “said Lighfoot. “It won’t be easy surfing against the ballies so they all know the wave really well but I am going to surf hard and see what happens”.