After elimination heats, quarterfinals and semifinals the top gold panners faced fierce competition in the SA National Gold Panning Championship finals on Saturday, September 28th.
Besides the individual events, there were the entertaining team events, the funny couples panning event, and the winner takes all Jokers competition. Jokers’ competitors had to find 41 seeded nuggets and the winner was Coen Vermaak in a time of 1:26.
The top two panners in the official individual competitions qualify to represent South Africa at the World Gold Panning Championships in the Czech Republic next year. The medalists were as follows
Proficient men – Diaan van Heerden (gold), Andrew Mason (silver), Armand Pretorius (bronze)
Proficient ladies – Beatrix van Biljon (gold), Essie Mogane (silver), Jané Vemaak (bronze)
Juniors – Charity Mkhantswa (gold), Zach van der Heever (silver), Ntando Dladla (bronze)
Veterans – Andrew Mason (first), Dix van Dam (second), Willem Liebenberg (bronze)
Traditional Estwing – Ngdwakhe Radeba (gold); Bright Malatjie (silver); Hester Liebenberg (bronze)