With over 150 paddlers on the water it was indeed a festive affair at Emmarentia Dam on Saturday 4 March 2017, at the worlds only High Altitude Surfski Race!  While it certainly appeared as if everyone was having the time of their lives, the Jetski and motorboat riders were definately enjoying their opportunity to create wakes up and down the small dam!  Spectators also enjoyed the spectacle with all kinds of promo’s including camels to entertain them.


Its also a grand opportunity to watch some of SA’s best top paddlers in our own back yard with a lot of out of town visitors participating – from Lowveld, Eastern Cape as well as Natal!  Certainly a great success this High altitude event!


Well done to Wayne Jacobs and Dave Hamilton-Brown who led the race from start to finish  – all 10kms, in a time of 43 minutes (Dabs) as Sub Veteran winners as well, followed by Hank McGregor with his wife Pippa, in 44 minutes (KZN) – leading Mixed Double and first K2.

Colin Wilson and Andy Birkett were the 2nd finishing K2, in 3rd overall (Dabs/Natal) in 45 minutes and Jasper Mocke was the first K1 finisher (WP) some 21 seconds later.


The Ladies race was dominated by the KZN gals – with Bridgitte Hartley  who finished first in 49 minutes,  our national pride boast, with an Olympic Bronze medal, with Hayley Nixon finishing in 50 minutes, and Kerry Segal 3rd in 54 minutes.


Anna Clifford Arwidi (Dabs) was the first finishing Gauteng lady in 57 minutes in 4th place in the ladies race, with Michelle Van Reenan  next in 1:00, as Sub Veteran champ, while Sarah Evans (Dabs)  finished as next lady in 1:01 however she was missed on the results as she was in her husbands boat with his number on and wasnt picked up as a lady finisher!


Lisa Currell (Dabs) in 1:02 as 7th lady, and Holly Spencer 8th as the Under 23 ladies winner in 1:03.  There is an unknown Alicia Botha who finished in 1 hour 17 minutes, and Marian Lombard (Watuni) was the official 9th lady finisher in 1 : 21!


There were also a number of mixed double surfski’s participating apart from the wining double McGregor combo…..and it was apparently NOT Wikus Loots and Andrea van Tonder (LOW) who were the 2nd place mixed Double finishers in 48 minutes, as Andreas insists on his male genes being present, checked and validated, so the 2nd Mixed doubles crew were actually Martin van den Bergh and Morgan Ziervogel in 50 minutes (JCC) making Janet Bartlett and Bruce Dixon the 3rd Mixed double crew in 52 minutes!


Top podium first place  age category finishers included the First Sub Veteran K1 from EC – Bevan Manson in 46 minutes,  Sowetan Under 23 champions, Siyabonga Tyiki and Thando Ngamlana in 48 minutes, with David Rodrigues (Dabs) being the first K1 Under 23 finisher in 50 minutes.


The first Sub Grand master finisher (EC) Rob Smith in 48:37, while Gary Ralph and Voler Eberle finished as the first K2 SGM team in 50 miutes (Dabs).  The first Sub Master finishers (DABS) Andrew Hall and Anthony Rowan in 48 :51 minutes with Michael Stewart (ERK) being the first Sub Master K1 finisher in 49minutes.


The first Veteran (DABS) was Mark Garden in 49 minutes, and the K2 veteran top finishers were John Cunningham and Claude Nish in 54 minutes (Dabs).  The first Masters (Dabs) in 50 minutes – Sean Martin and Alaric Pagel!  The K1 Master finisher was KZN’s Kevin Murray in 55 minutes.   Peter O Connor and Nigel Harvey were the Grand master finishers in 51 minutes (Dabs) although Graham Holm was the K1 top GM finisher (Dabs) in 54 minutes.  Brian Longley the first finishing Great Grand Master finisher (Dabs) in 54 minutes, with the first Under 18 (Dabs) being Matthew Eckart in 55 minutes! Sowetan Zanenhanhla Mbala finished as the first Under 16 (Sow) in 57 minutes,


There is certainly a huge list of helpers / sponsors to be thanked and Pete O Connor has done an excellent job on GPKayak of ensuring they are recognised  – the list is also included here – and we apologise for any person who contributed who is not listed here…..all support was greatly appreciated.



ADREACH anchor sponsor and many hands

Brad / Meals & sponsors

Fenn sponsor

Standard Bank Meals

Plusssz energy drinks from Sean

Cocktails Carlo

SET prizes and ships

(the ships of the desert came from the Fish)

Time Keeping   Roy

All the wave generators    Danny, Roy, Royce, Knobby Knowles

Hutton Motors    fuel

Eurosteel   celebrities

Robinsons for Tattoos

Jasper   clinic

Rob and Chris   Social media

Chris   SUPs  and….I think you played a big part in getting SABCTV

Jennie  reporting

Washy and Dean  Entries, registration, results and handouts

Lucien   bar

Daniel and Oliver    support

Raoul  wave generators, coffee, consternation

Jim    looking after sponsors, media, caps

Tony   Dabs support

Jason  ramps, buoys, trophies, bar, boats, etc etc

Sidwell   club maintenance

Patrick   Parking control

Orcillia   Dabs support, banking

Janet     Media

Fish  ships of the desert and unwavering support

Chad and Belkie  surf skis and prizes

Nic   Music

Ham  Ghetto blaster

Steve   PA, MC, shirts, SABC, scarc, etc etc

Sean   Plusssz

Carlo   Cocktails

Joe    beg borrow stealing of surf skis  (Please all thank Joe profusely….)

Scatter   Results, prizes, prizegiving

Woodrow   Eurosteel team

Danny    wave generators

Harry    surf skis

Schumpeter   support

Desiree   time keeping

Meyer   jack of all trades

Keith   meals



Jennie Dallas

for GCU PR

082 857 857 1