JESSE Leigh gets a thrill from racing down a hill in his trolley – so much so his family travelled to Invercargill from Christchurch to attend the South Alive Trolley Derby last weekend.
Inspired when he watched the movie Kiwi Flyer for the first time, the 10-year-old set his sights on competing in a trolley derby himself, and came second in his category, racing in General Leigh on Sunday.
“I love the racing and seeing what time I get,” he said.
His mum Suzanne also raced and won the adult category in the same trolley.
She said they took part every year, as well as at other derbies around the South Island.
There were 15 entrants in total. Douglas Hackett, who won the 11-12 years old category, had entered the event before and said his new cart gave him the upper hand.
He noticed a difference racing compared to previous years, and pushing forward helped at the start.
He took on Holly Dunstan in the deciding race but there were no hard feelings between the two competitors. As they shook hands she smiled and said, “next year”.
“Next year,” was his response.
South Alive trustee and volunteer Jess Chalmers said the fifth annual event went well and she was glad the sun was shining.
She said about 400 bags were filled with shredded paper to be used as racetrack barriers. “It takes a bit of preparation beforehand.”
The event was part of International Children’s Day celebrations in Invercargill, with a Family Fun Day at nearby Elizabeth Park.
Children rode donkeys and miniature horses, blew bubbles, slipped on the water slide and tossed gumboots.
At the event, Jaxon Murch (7) experienced his first time riding. He partnered up with an SPCA rescued miniature horse named Rocky.
A Children’s Day event was also held at the Invercargill Fire Station.