South African Spinning: Motorsport has become fan favorite in Soweto
Updated 17:06, 02-Aug-2019
In South Africa's biggest township, Soweto, a dangerous hobby that was often associated with gangsters has evolved into a motorsport known as spinning or drifting. This exciting activity offers a chance for enthusiastic drivers to formally show off their tricks in modified cars and CGTN's Yolisa Njamela caught up with them.
It's loud and it's wild. It's also considered South Africa's most thrilling motorsport. Taking the skids by storm. The pit fills up to the brim with smoke. The thicker it becomes - the louder the screams.
YOLISA NJAMELA SOWETO "It's about non-stop action, the spills and thrills of car spinning and it's becoming more and more popular here in Soweto."
So, the aim of spinning is to veer your car. Send it spinning around in circles while still maintaining complete control of it. While all this is happening, the spinner or the passenger shows off to the crowd by striking various poses. This spinning or drifting academy is a brainchild of Pule Motloung. He started it in 2009.
PULE MOTLOUNG SOWETO DRIFT ACADEMY OWNER "It's a decade of struggle, decade of challenges, decade of learning and obviously a decade of basically experiencing new environments in as far as Motorsport is concerned. We are here ten years later and we are excited as Soweto drift academy to see that not only did we get it legalized but now we have a space in the most internationally recognized platform, I mean we are FNB stadium. It does not get better than that."
As part of celebrating ten years of Soweto Drift academy, Motloung brought in a number of women car spinners to show off their skills.
TUMI PHALA DRIFTER "For me I still love it because it started as something that was depicted as vagabonds and just people getting up to nonsense but now it's moved into something that is going to be an actual sport and that for me is big. To be part of that transformation, that creation of a sporting code, for me that's just amazing."
MICHELLE PRETORIUS DRIFTER "I think when it comes to spinning; people are so scared of it. I speak to my friends about it and they're like mmmm I'm never going to sit even in the passenger seat but once you're in the car, you are into a whole different world."
Spinning is one of the fastest-growing motorsports in South Africa but unlike other sports, economic benefits are still lacking. Motloung's only wish now is that corporate South Africa comes on board and assist them.
PULE MOTLOUNG SOWETO DRIFT ACADEMY OWNER "I think I'm working hard, I'm working hard and I'm passionate about this thing and I'm committed to the hustle."
For now - Motloung and the rest of the adrenalin junkies will continue with spinning. Yolisa Njamela, CGTN, Soweto, South Africa.