A YOUNG Darlington student is hoping to skate her way into the 2028 Olympics after placing first in a skateboarding competition in Mackay, Queensland last month.
Eleven-year-old Tayah Payne received a $200 Shire of Mundaring youth grant to travel to Mackay to compete in the BMD Rumble on Reef skateboarding championship.
Over the five-day event, Tayah placed first in the 16 and under female championship division, and first place in the 16 and under street skate series competition for 2023.
Tayah’s father Greg Payne thanked the shire for the grant which contributed towards the interstate travel expenses to compete in the competition.
“We were very grateful to find out that the shire had this youth grant initiative in place to help young athletes like Tayah,” he said
“It’s particularly difficult for athletes of Tayah’s age to come up with the funds to travel interstate when these opportunities come up.
“The grant money helped Tayah pay for part of her airfares over to Mackay. The rest she funded herself from a prior competition win which we are very proud of her for doing.
“I’m very happy and proud to say Tayah really gave it her all and skated fantastically,” he said.
“Because she came first in the under 16’s event, she qualified to skate in the women’s open division which has now given her great exposure and the opportunity to skate against the top female skaters in Australia.
“To our delight she placed third in this division.”
Tayah is now on the radar to be selected into a new sports program which will be run through the WA Institute of Sport.
The program is expected to recruit young skateboarders like Tayah and help them on their path to the 2028 Olympics in Los Angeles and the 2032 Olympics in Brisbane.
In 2022-23 the shire awarded 34 youth grants to the total value of $7000.