Organisers of a junior hockey carnival say community sport could be cut back for months after hoons tore through Perry Lakes Reserve, destroying more than half the turf.
YMCA Coastal City Hockey Club president Pat Knott arrived at the reserve at 7am yesterday to find about 200sqm of the oval covered in deep tyre tracks.
More than 700 children had been scheduled to play in an annual junior carnival yesterday, which organisers had to scale down, resulting in some being unable to play.
"I was extremely disappointed and felt a bit sick to be honest," Mr Knott said.
"We had to cut back players and play games on a half field.
"We've spent a huge number of hours organising this and we've been confronted with an act of vandalism that has put the event in jeopardy."
Mr Knott said at least half the reserve was unplayable and City of Cambridge staff told him it could take months for the oval to be repaired.
He said it was heartbreaking for the young hockey players who would have to play on less than half of their usual space.
The well-used reserve is also now an eyesore.
Despite the damage, Mr Knott said he did not believe the culprits would realise the impact their actions would have on the sporting community.
"People are just trying to do something for their community and their families and the repercussions of someone's five minutes of joy have been significant," he said.
"It's a completely senseless act."
On Saturday night, police got a report of cars doing burnouts in a nearby carpark and summoned the male driver of a Subaru WRX for reckless driving.
The man's car was seized by police, though the vehicle is not alleged to have been involved in the oval damage.
Police believe that was caused using a four-wheel-drive.
Police believe the same vehicle was used to knock over a bollard at the entry to the reserve.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.