Six talented scooter riders from Hawke's Bay are set to compete in their growing sport at the national competition this weekend.
Hawke's Bay riders Ryan Pedlow, Thor Larson, Manaia Brown, Zion Kiripatea, Sean McFarland and Alex Madsen will be competing at the New Zealand Scooter Nationals in Christchurch on Saturday.
The competitors all train at Bay Skate in Napier.
"For these riders scootering is much more than just a hobby. It is still a hobby for them, but they've taken it to this next sporting level" Bay Skate Facility Lead Kyle Hamilton said.
For 21-year-old Alex Madsen, who won a silver medal at the World Roller Games in Barcelona this year, this will be her seventh competition in New Zealand.
"The thing I like about scootering is it doesn't matter what age you are or if you're a boy or a girl, you can just head down to the skate park and find others who are interested in the same sport," Madsen said.
Madsen works at Bay Skate and trains for about two hours a day on top of that.
Ryan Pedlow aged 11, often trains alongside Madsen, coming to the skate park daily after school.
"I'm really looking forward to meeting other riders and trying out a new park this weekend," he said.
The competition consists of two 45 second runs where riders will perform different tricks.
They are graded on style, consistency, the difficulty of tracks and use of the park, Madsen said.
Madsen said one of the tricks she will be showcasing at the competition this weekend is a flare, which is a backflip 180 spin.
There are 11 different competition categories.
Madsen will be competing in the open pro women's category and Pedlow in the under 12s.
The top ten from each category qualify for the Australasian championships in Melbourne this April.
Pedlow said a long-term goal is to place at an Australasian competition.
Madsen said Napier was becoming a hub for the sport.
"You're starting to see people scootering to school and then coming down to the skate park to scoot after.
"It's a great way to get out of the house and enjoy time with other people who have the same interests," Madsen said.
Bay Skate Manager Justin Dwyer said he was hopeful for "at least four wins" this weekend, because of the high standard of riders in Napier.
Dwyer thinks the up-and-coming sport could soon even be played at the Olympics.