Managing Director Usama Ahmed Executive Editor Augustine Rutasingwa Contents Submission firstname.lastname@example.org Issue 04 Zama Shabangu Llyod Thangwanne Innocent Sichande Seapei Motsilanyane Erwin Lyon Johann Van Schalkwyk Dave Bachinsky Pim Pomsy Justin Le Green Gareth Tristan Bellingan The views and options expressed in the editorial and advertisements within Africa Skateboarding Diary do not necessary reflects the opinions of Africa Skateboarding Diary nor of its any associates. www.africaskateboardingdiary.com
Anyhow so tell me is your name just Llyod or My name is Lloyd Thangwane. Llyod shall do! Or you have a nickname! Haha I’ve had some nicknames in the past buy they don’t seem to stick, I have an alias on instagram though @mr_green97. Why nicknames didn’t stick! Seems like you are so dynamic Okay, I just remembered one. I met a friend that I used to skate with a lot attheskatepark just the other day and he called me “Lloyd the freakazoid!” lol and I knew it was Sihle, hahaha. Yeah but for the most part they tend not to stick. Like that one better!! Hahaha The Freakazoid! So the local scene in Pretoria, tell us about it! You grew up there. Yes, well I’ve been skateboarding for about 8 years and there have been various reasons and influences behind what in doing. The local scene has been very much the same since I started skating with other guys, there have been highs and lows sometimes kids think that skating is the coolest thing and other times they shy away from it but whenever I’m around the youngers they tend to wear a smile around me regardless of their aparent “social status,” or whatever. A lot of the scene is also a picture of the past generation of known skateboarders in South Africa, nowadays they have jobs and might be holding down a family but never forget about skateboarding. Speaking on influences and reasons. Why you get into skateboarding? What does it mean to you Well I was a very imaginative child, I’m still like that and so that imagination had to move. I developed drive from the good and the bad. When I was younger, I would play a lot of PlayStation and I didn’t know but my friends didn’t like playing with me (I would always win 2 player versus games). I tried other things, played football but my talent wasn’t obvious to the coach, I passed the ball a lot and was good at free kicks and getting into space, played any central midfield position. So at these early ages I was doing a lot but just as any child would play.
A lot of influence actually came from gaming in the beginning, that’s how I began getting familiar with tricks and what people are doing on a skateboard. I would pass time with it as I got older and it would be a more frequent thing and as I got better with practise, I would want to spend more time doing it. Skating became an outlet for me. For the past 8 years yoy have been a skateboarder, is there any change you see?! Personally I’ve grown through my experience as a skateboarder, we all have our differences and qualities that distinguish us from one another and those that define common ground. Change in the sport, I think over this time frame there has been a phase of commercial development which has moved the overall in a gradual way. More people watch skateboarding video projects and magazines like The Berrics, Thrasher magazine and competitions which has more kids amped to skate while The quality of the craft has increased in a few areas around the globe. I also see a change in hairstyles haha. Speak of South Africa Skateboarding!What can you tell!? Llyod SA: Well In the South African context skateboarding is still a bit untouched but amongst my peers there is a lot of talent and it’s ridiculous! Most of my inspiration has been from overseas guys but nowadays I go on instagram before a skate session and see Moses Adams and his little brother also Jean-Marc Johannes justdoing the most and I’m left wondering what the boundaries are haha, Cape Town has a lot to offer and me living in Pretoria, the scene here is healthy too. I was lucky enough to be around some guys that skate really well like Charl Steyn! I’ve low-key learnt some things from him over the years. I’ve seen a lot of kids come and go in skateboarding kids being my friends not continuing to do it as it gets harder to endure, I’d like to see more children skateboarding but they’re impressionable and it’s not easy to just develop a talent to where they can be recognised for it at a high level. Thats great! If you have a chance to go on a skate mission across South Africa who would you choose?! Probably the guys I’m skating with at the moment namely Zuko Makuzeni, Etienne Le Roux and other guys that I don’t know personally that skate well there are a few.
Tell us something else you do out skateboarding? I’m a cashier at menlyn skate park and I also spend some time training in the gym. I also play the keyboard but I haven’t been playing that much lately. This means your whole into skateboarding. What does it feels to skate at the park or streets?! Well in the skate park I’m always trying new things and learning new tricks, the reception in skateparks is good enough to be able to gain momentum and develop your talent, usually I’m in my own zone in the skate park testing my limits. Sometimes I skate street and stack clips there and I’m also focused there because when I’m doing these tricks there’s always the risk of failure and in some unfortunate case, failing can end it all but I mean, I don’t take it too seriously all the time in fact when I joke around sometimes or just try something that someone said I should try like a New trick idea, sometimes then it’s a refreshing New perspective I get instead of manufacturing tricks. Then if you are to be asked to choose one pro skater as your mentor who shall you choose?! Maybe get a chance to work together. Paul Rodriguez, he has been a professional skateboarder for a long time and has a business mind aside from his legendary stature in the sport. Cant wait to tell this to Paul! Do you have anything want to share and talk about?! People tend to put themselves in little buckets which is alright and in fact can be a practical thing to do but can interfere with them, an example is that many skateboarders learn tricks and then get comfortable at a point, maybe even forgetting the effort involved in gaining their abilities and stop getting better not because they’re at their peak or anything like that but because they stopped trying possibly holding the assumption that it’s not expected of them. I’d say to any young person that’s skateboarding, don’t be so quick to quit. -Interviewed By Augustine Rutasingwa
How can you get girls to participate?
So you’re still learning, how are you finding the tricks?
So far Atlegang is the only girl [our big sister] at 031sk8 Crew, but we trust that as other girls see her they will be more willing to join. At first she was uncomfortable but with more sessions she’s gained confidence and she enjoys skateboarding.
We use platforms like Braille Skateboarding who we discovered on Instagram. Koketso and Orapeleng are pretty good at tricks, they are always the ones who bring new moves to challenge us and then we don’t want to go home until we have all landed the trick. This pushes us, it’s competitive and fun. They call themselves future skateboarding champions; that would be so amazing for our crew, especially our village. With limited resources in your village, what do kids your age do for fun?
Our mentor is a lady too and she insists that we need more in the crew. She even offered us a prize for getting more girls to join and Tlotlo got a couple rands for inviting Atlegang and the baby of the crew, Gosego. Who are you and how long have you been skateboarding?
There’s a few football clubs, traditional dance groups, hip hop crews and emcees. Although Bongani played football, he seems to be more interested in skateboarding now. It’s far more thrilling, so we can understand why.
We are 031sk8 Crew from Moruleng (Saulspoort); a village in North West Province of South Africa. 0318 is our area code, so our name was pretty easy to come up with.
What do you mostly look forward to as a crew? Travelling!! We’ve heard about KDC and that it may be back again this year and we look forward to being there. There are possibilities of visiting other clubs and crews throughout the country, something we’ll grow from as a crew.
What do people in Moruleng think about skateboarding?
We really thought we were just coming to play; we are already learning about patience and persistence. We fall many times [skateboarding] and fail to land tricks but we get right up and try again because we’re determined to get it right. Our mentor encourages us to apply this [determination] throughout our lives especially at school. Bingo is considering a career in journalism, through skateboarding he could take up photographic or sports journalism to name a few career paths. For now we have a lot that we’re learning and many of these lessons we can apply daily. We are encouraged to work as a team, to be comfortable with contributing and making decisions for the crew. We came up with crew names, sketched logos and now we’re drawing up rules to manage our crew by.
We started skateboarding a few months ago when our friend Mogomotsi (now crew captain), told us about some sessions that take place a few times a week at an old school building near his house. We went to check it out and we liked it, we liked it a lot! Our village does not have places where young people can go for enjoyment, and it has been refreshing to discover skateboarding.
There are many opinions; those who have not experienced it are fearful. It is more popular with boys than girls, even some of us thought it was only for boys. While many say we’ll fall and hurt ourselves badly (break bones even), others appreciate that we have a platform that can potentially keep us from getting involved in dangerous and unproductive activities like drugs and alcohol abuse. These have become common and very easily accessible to the youth here.
How do you think skateboarding will play a role in your future?
What else do you do or enjoy outside of skateboarding? We have very creative and artistic talent in our crew; Tshireletso makes mobile [Bluetooth] speakers that we blast our favourite music from at our sessions. These can be seen on @ tvsco_ on Instagram.
Is the anything else 031sk8 Crew would like to add? In relative terms we’re still babies so there is so much more for us to learn and we’re very excited about the things we can experience and achieve through skateboarding. Thank you Africa Skateboarding Diary for this platform. Skate ‘til the wheels fall off!!
We also want to go spreading the fun and knowledge from skateboarding throughout our village. There are hundreds of opportunities we can create for our self and we look forward to exploring the world. -Seapei Motsilanyane
Baraka Bishota hands Abubakar Amour his prizes he won after being the Winner of Flat Ground League â€“ Tanzania Finals AFRICASKATEBOARDINGDIARY.COM //18
Flat Ground League is a series of skateboarding events designed to suite many communities with no or less facilities such as skateboards, parks and even public awareness. As the name suggests, the Flat Ground League doesn’t need an all expensive venue! Flat Ground League needs only a flat space where skaters come freely and compete in series of Game of Skates set into Jams with Semi Final and Final at last. Many of Africa countries have a limited supply and resources for Skateboarding. Many We at Africa Skateboarding Diary thought of the need to start a program and event that shall keep the skateboarding spirit in Africa. The first stop was in Tanzania. The event was held at Don Bosco Youth Centre, Dar es salaam – Tanzania and featured 12 skaters into 3 Jams which were later changed into 4 Jams for delay reasons. The even was planned by Usama Ahmed, a skateboarding activist for Africa living in South Africa. The local event was also had intermission sessions of BMX riders. Thsi added an excitement flavour to the spectators. The event was judged by Philip Haertel, a Germany volunteer with Skate Aid who built a skatepark in Dodoma, Tanzania in 2012 and since then they have been running the project. There were the following jams; JAM 1 Danny Makindi James Komba - Won Miki Dougie Zhaki KS JAM 2 Abubakar Amour - Won Makala Mwendo Taylan Xixcash JAM 3 Athuman Evarist Gideon Lyimo Patrick Lyimo - Won JAM 4 Christopher Rawlins Hassan Takashi - Won AFRICASKATEBOARDINGDIARY.COM //20
Later the four jams winners did a semi final and the two last standing; Abubakar Amour and Hassan Takashi went into finals and Abubakar Amour won with a total sum of 60 points.
Flat Ground League has generous support from World Skateboarding Federation through her African Skate Project of which every country winner shall earn an all paid expenses into the Flat Ground League – African Finals in 2018. Also the series is supported by TheBoardr, Bun n Bunee Skateboards and the Africa Skateboarding Diary. The Tanzania event has an extension of support from Don Bosco Missionaries and Skate Aid.
Baraka Bishota, General secretary of Tanzania Roller Skating Federation presented the prizes to the winners. He also gave a brief speech of which he positioned the roles of the firm, and the Olympic vision 2020. He argued skateboarder to keep skateboarding and get ready to represent Tanzania well into Olympics.
On the 15th of July, a team of Kimberlaaities headed out into the Eastern Free State with a mission to invade a newly built skatepark in Thaba Nchu; a small town outside Bloemfontein. The strategic planning of this invasion was tasked to Erwin Lyon who had to assemble a team of Kimberlites with enough stripes to launch a full invasion. Having not set a foot in that park before, putting together a team for the invasion could not have been an easy task. First to earn a seat in the taxi was Damian Bramley. His consistency and ability to annihilate any obstacle he comes across came advantageous in Thaba Nchu. Bramley’s full speed skating sent him to almost every single obstacle around the 90s inspired park without putting down his board often. From the bowl like mini ramp to the bump, the volcano and the round bowl he just couldn’t stop. Instantly stealing the hearts of many locals with his unmatched, incredibly styled backside disasters along with smooth lip tricks on every coping he came across. Bramley was clearly on a league of his own and left with an MVP prize.
Next to earn a seat was the charismatic style magoo, Siphiwe Kheswa. Kheswa’s style, consistency and tech skills not only mpressed the judges but it also had locals in disbelief. He earned himelf first place in the advanced division. Coming up behind him was Welkom born hypesman Kenneth Basjan. Kenneth brought unmatched energy into the course by feeding off everyone else’s energy and constantly saluting the fans for their support. Coming up on 3rd place was Thabang Tsillo, the 3rd Kimberlite seat occupant. Besides his grown man styled 360 flip, Thabang had a bag of tech tricks resting below his belt that impressed the judges. Below him in the 4th place was a Bloemfontein native, Marius Lamprecht. The 4th seat was occupied by the enthusiastic young grom, Mvelo Skuni. Mvelo is still finding his way around the board and thus can barely pop his board high enough for grinds. The young gun makes up for this by slashing copings real good. He slashed himself into the beginners division 2nd place. Gopolang Ruiter made sure he kept the 1st place title in his hometown.
The contest was judged by Natalie Bramley and Warrick Delport. Natalie is one of the few female skateboarders in the country and is actively involved in local programs to bring girls into skateboarding at the Kumba Skate Plaza. Alongside her was the Kimberley born OG Warrick Delport. The mission was a great success. Despite the cold and windy weather, the local spectators were definitely entertained by the heat delivered by the skaters. The team headed back to the Kumba Skate Plaza with intent to launch another invasion. Follow Kimberley Diamon Cup to see where the next invasion might be. AFRICASKATEBOARDINGDIARY.COM //30
1. First let’s start with who you are! A brief Bio Hello I’m Dave Bachinsky I’ve been a professional skateboarder for 11 years. I run a recycled skateboard company called ShapeThree. 2. Do you have nickname? If yes, how did it start and is it relevant to who you are today! Nope no nicknames so far 3. Take us to how you started skateboarding! Good to share how you started into skateboarding and your junior years as a skateboarder. When I was 2 years old my uncles would let me try there first skateboard. Usually sit on it and they would push me around. Well at least what I can remember from photos. When I turned 6 years old my parents got divorced and we drove from Missouri to Massachusetts to live where the rest of my family recited. That summer my uncles gave me my first skateboard a Santa Cruz slick. I believe it was a 7.5 but they took a saw to it and cut it even smaller. 4. Tell about your town, the street, people and life as they interact with you as a skateboarder and anyone else. I grew up in an amazing ruggied small city called Lowell, Massachusetts ( 30 minutes north of Boston). Everyday I would skate because my uncles built a backyard mini ramps (5 ft ramp 14 ft wide with a 6 ft. exstention).It was unreal to watch them skate and not know how to do anything but slightly pump back and forth. In 1999 we got 4 pre-fab skateparks built through out our town. AFRICASKATEBOARDINGDIARY.COM //34
At that time I was around 13 so it was amazing to meet everyone from the city and skate everyday. 5. In case you have records, share how your family reacted seeing you skateboarding for the first time. My family grew up with skateboarding so they would take me anywhere they went to skate. It was amazing! I’m sure they were stoked. 6. in case you travelled outside your city because of skateboarding! Can you tell if it was a tour ot event and how was it? The experience and everything. I remember turning 16 and getting my license to drive. That meant we could explore new cities and skate everywhere! We would all pack in 6 deep into my car and skate all day! Driving 6 hours north to Montreal was the raddest thing because it meant we were out of the United States. The skate scene was so good too!! 7. How was a turn up into professional skateboarding to you? Did a friend linked you to companies? Growing up we would send out VHS sponsor tapes to companies. It was a hustle and it was really hard to get noticed. We had a great crew back in Massachusetts so every summer we would release a videos (Thanks camera). Between those local videos and contest that’s how we got ourselves on the map.
8. Have you ever been in Africa? If yes, tell us about it! If no, which country would you consider visiting? Yes it was a journey and amazing to visit Kimberly for the Diamond Cup contest! The amount of great people in one stadium!! ** In case we ask you to mentor one African Skateboarder, who would you take in and help, probably have him spend a month with you at work and skateboarding! Moses is amazing!! Probably learn some new tricks with him for a month 9. Who is your social life, girls and skateboarding! Does it affect you? Basically everyone in skateboarding.. haha it’s amazing! Usually I’m mobbing with Manny Santiago & Serria Fellers because we all live so close to each other. Recently I purposed to my lady so I’m getting marry to the love of my life!! She super supportive of everything I work towards and all my traveling. 10. In your professional life, how many titles have you won? The experience of the first winning! Recently I won $10,000 for the #BeforeTheStorm contest at Red Bull hart lines. It’s a voting based contest through a phone app called podium. I’m stoked because for the last 3 years I’ve been giving back to the skate scene of where I grew up in Lowell, Massachusetts. I’m giving $600 back into east coast skateboarding from this contest win. It amazing because this platform is allowing ams to get involved in huge contest like xgames / dew tour. 1st China Houzou contest 1st CSS Ryan Sheckler Contest 1st Brazil World Cup Best Trick 1st ChinaXOPEN Contest 1st Brooklyn Projects Best Trick ** Is there anything you can tell us that we haven’t asked? Get out and skate!!
**Is there any worse memory in your life as a skateboarder? Dealing with security kick outs AFRICASKATEBOARDINGDIARY.COM //35
And sending my old boards to Uganda just isnt enough for me. I remember having no money for a new board, a stranger approached me holding his old deck and handing it to me. If something so small can change me, what will happen when we all come together and give our old boards to skateboarders without some to skate on? how to mobilize all these european skateboarders tho? As i spoke to more people from Zambia, Uganda, Ghana, Nigeria (and many more places) I discovered a beautifull movement and so many good storys these people have to tell. people who are fighting to improve their communitys, to make a better future, people who share the love i feel for skateboarding and with the same open mindedness. Howcome we in the west dont even know about this? Howcome these brands who push skateboarding up to the olympics and sell their brand to kids in Europe and the United States arent helping skateboarders in Africa? What unites us as skateboarders? What does the culture mean versus the sport? so i concluded i got to get up and do what i can. Which is show people what is going on. Ive been making videos for fun for myself over 15 years. maybe its time to come out and show people what i have got on skills in making video. So i contacted skateboarders in many countrys i wanna visit to filmand interview them. I decided i am going to travel by any means nesecairy, hitchhike, walk, whatever, to travel from my hometown in Holland Through all of Africa and finish in Cape town to hope to be able to fly back with a load of video material and edit a documentary about skateboarding in Africa. The pioneers who opened the first shops, build the first parks, help people around them with skateboarding and build something amazing. When the film is done i dont want to stop there. i wanna keep supporting. send material or people to build parks and help out in the struggle for skateboarders who have trouble getting new boards for exapmle. i started a crowdfund to make my trip possible: https://www.voordekunst.nl/projecten/5664-op-een-skateboard-naarkaapstad-1 on all my social media im to be found as Pim Pomsy Pim Pomsy from Holland in Europe, thats me. I am going to travel through Africa hoilding my skateboard in one hand and a videocamera in the other. When i was 15 i started a festival named Vogelpop, im from a small place whithout a bar, without skateparks and even without a supermarket (which is weird for Dutch standerds..) Still.. me and my friends fell in love with skateboarding, making music and so we figured, if nothing is happening, we got to make it happen ourselfves. Fighting for something with passion we made the festival bigger then the town i grew up in. Now, seeing that same type of passion in so many skateboarders throughout the African continent I cant sit back and ignore that. As the skateboarding culture has showed me, we should be there for each other in any way we can. AFRICASKATEBOARDINGDIARY.COM //36
YOUTH DAY SKATE CELEBRATION JUNE 16TH In 1976 students from various schools within Soweto took a stand against the introduction of Afrikaans as the medium of instruction within their schools. June 16, which is nationally recognized as ‘Youth Day’ a public holiday in South Africa saw more than 20 000 students protest against the education system known as Bantu Education. The number of students killed during the protest was 176, although it was estimated up to 700 students lost their lives that day. The manner of which they stood up for their beliefs is now a reminder to the youth of South Africa to keep striving for a better life. On this historic day, we host our annual Youth Day skate jam in Sharpville by the old police station right across the Sharpville Human Rights Precinct. The event organized by Aaron Mahlatsi, Nkosana Ashley Mthembu & M.J Khaalo saw 20 of the skateboarders within the Vaal competes in a best trick showdown on obstacles laid before them. The initiative with the aim of developing the Vaal skate scene in which without proper skateboarding infrastructure yet still, we as the youth of the Vaal (016) have taken it upon ourselves to use the streets as our platform. This event wouldn’t have been possible without the assistance of Technique Skateboards South Africa, in which the brand has played a vital role in keeping the Vaal skate scene competitive since the beginning of 2017. AFRICASKATEBOARDINGDIARY.COM //38
Name: Justin Le Hometown: San Jose, CA, United States Occupation: Student Instagram: @rendezvous_ skateparks I grew up skating transition and started skating street in high school. At the time, there were more bad skateparks then good. Basic things like having no runup, ledges being too tall, or a lack of basic elements (i.e. Box, flat bar, manny pad) was too common, and so I started to draw what I thought were better skateparks. I taught myself a little 3D modeling and started posting my designs on Instagram. Next thing you know, people started hitting me up for 3D renders and design work. It was a trip, because I didnâ€™t think I would get to do so much so soon. I started about a year and a half ago and now I have several designs pending, as well as, some great people showing me the ropes. Shout out to Terry Valles (@tearing_valleys) for taking me under his wing! I just got done filming and editing a full-length video called Abstract 3, which is now on youtube. My friends and I all have full parts. Go peep it!
I’LANGA MALL CAR PARK LEAGUE July 22nd 2017
This sunny Saturday held a spectacle of sick skate tricks and a great atmosphere all around with skaters of all ages coming together to show us what they’ve got! We set the park up in a way that just invited the skaters to hit up all kinds of ramps and rails. One in particular was a kicker used to launch over a park bench. We were graced with plenty a sick trick from grabs, backside heel flips to a cheeky shifty ollie! We held a skate clinic for the little dudes and dudettes who are in the early stages of skating and in this session we taught them the Pop-Shuvit. The kids were all killing it; showing huge amounts of dedication! Just then we were graced with the best kind of distraction being our sponsors, Panarottis, who blessed us with some delicious pizza which nourished the bodies and pumped the energy levels for the competition! The competition began with a best trick competition for the Groms. These little dudes were showing some massive improvement and impressed everyone with their no-holding-back attitude. They hit up the fun box and cruised up and down the various kickers. A resident at our Car Park Leagues, Xander Cope, took the win with his fire cracker down the stairs of the fun box. The main event came when it was the seniors’ turn to compete. We split them into 3 groups of 4 skaters for a best line jam session. Each skater showed massive perseverance and some of the sickest steeze. After the best line jam we had a best trick session where the skaters brought out the tricks that they had been cooking up all day. The competition was insane! Local skater Jonathan Liebenberg came in 3rd & Johannesburg took the rest of the podium space with skaters Kelvin Vosloo in 2nd and Taylor Sturgess in 1st, which was a no brainer with his backside heelflip over the park bench. Taylor made his way home with a sweet new Epitome board, a R500 petrol voucher from Puma Nelspruit, food vouchers from Spur I’Langa Mall, Panarottis I’Langa Mall and Feast Nelspruit and various other cool prizes. This event will go down as a grand success in our books all thanks to our Lord Jesus, our sponsors, the skaters and our team here at Gsk8t! AFRICASKATEBOARDINGDIARY.COM //44
Published on Aug 13, 2017