8 promising young surfers have been selected out of the Surfing South Africa transformation program to compete in the Future Stars division at the upcoming Quiksilver Pro Junior 2011 presented by Durban. The Future Stars will compete at the Quiksilver Pro Junior and King of the Groms which is set to take place from 22-24 April at Durban’s New Pier Beach (Dairy Beach).
The Future Stars division is an initiative between Surfing South Africa (SSA), Quiksilver and the City of Durban. It aims to give promising young talent the chance to take part in an event like the Quiksilver Pro Junior.
“The event really creates a stage for these surfers and gives them the opportunity to show off their abilities. It allows them to show their skills at a major tournament and gives them a chance to make a name for themselves. Surfing South Africa really appreciates the investment that Quiksilver makes and we are pleased that these 8 surfers get this opportunity to shine on a big stage,” said Robin de Kock, General Manager of Surfing South Africa.
This year Papi Makinyane (17), Brandon Benjamin (16) and Benjamin De Castro (17) will be representing Western Province at the event. Marchal Reans (16) will be the lone Eastern Province representative whilst Khayehile Ncgobo (18), Bright Ntuli (18) and Thalente Mkhize (18) will be making the short trip up from Southern Kwa-Zulu Natal. Fika Ngubane (18) has been selected as the only competitor from Kwa-Zulu Natal. The majority of these surfers have represented their provinces at a national level and are no slouches when it comes to competitive surfing. 2 semi finals and a final will be held on Friday April 22.
The Future Stars division offers these young surfers the opportunity to surf against each other in front of the best junior surfers in the country whilst competing for a wildcard berth into the main event of the Quiksilver Pro Junior. All of their fees and expenses including airfares, meals, accommodation and entries are paid for which is what makes 1 of these 8 slots so sought after. In 2009 and 2010 Jeffrey’s Bay local Dominic Abersalie managed to edge out good friend and fierce rival Bertie Stuurman to take the gold, 2010 was their final year as junior surfers which leaves the door wide open for a new winning face in 2011.
The Quiksilver Pro Junior is a 2 star ASP Pro Junior event that boasts a hefty R75 000 in prize money. The event attracts the best junior surfers from all over the country. Event favourites include 2010 winner Shaun Joubert (Mossel Bay) and Beyrick de Vries (Umhlanga). The King of the Groms will be held at the same time for surfers under the age of 16 years old. The winner of the prestigious U16 division will be flown to France to compete in the Quiksilver King of the Groms international finals in October. Other divisions include U14 and U12.
There will be some great Quiksilver and Skullcandy prizes on offer in the Expression Session before the finals on Sunday (24th), which should produce some great surfing. The finals for all 4 divisions will be held on Sunday (24 April) afternoon with the event prize giving and crowning immediately after at the event site.
The Quiksilver Pro Junior and King of the Groms is presented by Durban and other sponsors include Skullcandy, SuperSport, Brandhouse, Bokomo and Nestle Pure Life Water.