ON BOARD: Skateboarding star Poppy Olsen is competing in the Queensland Championships of Bowl Skating at Coolum.
ON BOARD: Skateboarding star Poppy Olsen is competing in the Queensland Championships of Bowl Skating at Coolum. Warren Lynam

Poppy to bowl’em over on concrete

KINGS of concrete, assemble - it's Coolum's moment to show you its skating prowess.

The Queensland Championships of Bowl Skating are being held in Coolum this weekend, and bright stars of skating from all over the world descended on the coastal town to show off their bowlriding skills.

Internationally renowned competitors, some of them world champions, will battle it out for $10,000 in cash and prizes.

Poppy Olsen, from Newcastle, is only 15, but is the current world champ in her amateur division.

"I've been skating for six or seven years now," Poppy said.

"A family friend just randomly gave me a skateboard one day and I started skating - that's what started me off."

Poppy said she planned to turn pro next year, but in the meantime had wasted no time skating around the world picking up accolades, including two world cups this year.

"My last comp was in San Jose in America," she said.

"It was fun, I won my division.

"I'm not really super competitive, I just love skating.

"I go to America lots because a lot of the key competitions are there."

She said skating was a "very popular" sport for girls in the US, but she was looking forward to scoping out the talent in Coolum.

"There should be a few girls at this competition so I'm really looking forward to (it)," she said.

"I'm looking forward to seeing the local girls and seeing how they are skating here on the Coast. I've heard good things."

Poppy, who is also an ambassador for Youth Off the Streets with Father Chris Riley, said the most important piece of advice she had for young girls was to pursue whatever made them happy.

"I'd encourage all girls to just do the things they love and always believe in yourself," she said.

"For me, that's skating.

"Learning something new can be frustrating, but keep at it.

"If it's driving you crazy and it's annoying you, like a new trick, then just bank it and try again later.

"At the moment I'm working on my airs.

"I think I have my backside air front side.

"Well I'm still working on it. I'm always setting myself new goals."



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