After the Far'n High World Cup I went straight back to London in order to skate the first Olympic qualification contest of season 1 as the only South African representative.
Competing against 3 of the best athletes from each country around the world, there were over 110 skaters that competed in the global open qualification were as only 10 skaters made the cut to go through to the Streetleague quarter finals. All the pre qualified skaters have been skating SLS before they introduced this new Olympic qualification format with a Pro open qualifier allowing all countries to host national championships to send 3 of their best athletes to compete in the pro open.
The skatepark was always extremely full even though we were split up into groups and we were all only allowed to practice for a specific period of time. I was lucky enough to get some time on the course as I flew down to London 2 weeks before the event which was also split up in between my Far'N High Paris trip. The format of the qualifiers consisted of a 3 minute jam format in which we had to skate the entire course with 4 other skateboarders at the same time because the judges needed to get through all the skaters in one day.
I finished in 19th place in the Pro Open qualifiers after competing against the best skateboarders in the world. Some of the pre seeded skaters were injured and didn't show up to the contest therefore World Skate would go further down the open qualifiers list and take the next skater. There were 7 skaters that weren't present as well as an injury during practice which meant they took up to 18th place from the Pro Open qualifiers. Therefore I unfortunately didn’t make it into the SLS quarter finals to join the pre seeded skaters by 1 position. I was very disappointed but extremely proud of my performance and feel as though I tried my best and held the South Africa Flag up high.
Furthermore, this contest was a World Skate sanctioned event for the Olympics and the Olympic rules are that there is a continental quota which means that one athlete from each continent is guaranteed a spot at the Olympic Games. After this first event I was the highest ranked African by over 40 positions meaning that if I maintain my position by getting the most points and rank the highest in Africa on The World Skate ranking over the 2019/2020 qualification period I will qualify as the African representative at the Olympic Games.