Our skaters soar, given a fair go
BALLINA'S Fair Go skateboarding competition attracted some of Australia's best professional and amateur skaters to the region on Saturday.
In the event's 13th year, there were five divisions for skaters to compete in, with $5000 prize money up for grabs.
"We're expecting about 100 entrants," Skateboarding Australia national development manager Richard Flude said.
"Because we've got $5000 on the line, the competitors will be from more different regions as the divisions go up.
"We've got a lot of heads from Brisbane and people coming up from Port Macquarie. A lot of the Pro/Am Invitational Tour guys, who are some of the best skateboarders in Australia will be here."
On Saturday, more than 200 spectators watched as local and visiting skaters competed at Missingham Park skate park.
And there was more than just prize money on the line.
"There's a few industry heads on the judging panel and in the crowd, so some young kids might be able to get a sponsorship," Mr Flude said.
Mikey Mendoza, a 15-year-old Gold Coast skater who is sponsored by Nike and Volcom, travelled down to compete on Saturday.
He said the Ballina event was one of the best organised local-level competitions he had seen.
"It's good to see they have girls divisions here, too, because some of the competitions I go to don't provide that," he said.
Female skaters could compete across two categories on Saturday - junior girls for competitors under 14-years-old and open girls for older competitors.
"I've been skating for seven years and it's always just been about having fun," he said.
"You shouldn't really skate to get sponsored or you're never going to be a true skateboarder."