Professional scooter rider Kahurangi Day-Brown. Photo/Supplied
Freestyle 'scooter bros' Kahurangi and Makaia Day-Brown have rocketed their way into the Australasian scooter champs after stunning results at the recent Kiwi nationals.
The older of the Christchurch-based brothers, Kahu (16), was making his first competitive outing since turning professional in May last year at the NZ Scooter Nationals at Washington Way Reserve Skatepark, Christchurch.
At stake was the golden ticket of qualification for the ISA World Scooter Final in London by topping his pro section, a tough ask for a first-timer in the elite ranks against young men three-plus years older and more experienced than him.
In a result that Kahu is off the charts about, he finished third and in the prizemoney.
"Beyond stoked to pull out 3rd place at Nationals today in my first ever pro comp," he told his fans on Instagram.
Beyond stoked to pull out 3rd place at Nationals today in my first ever pro comp 😈🌴 Huge shoutout to everyone who competed today and had fun! 🙃 Also pulled a massive banger at the end of my run will post it when i have all the videos, DM me if you got some angles of my run 💤
Kahu (Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Whātua, Ngāi Tahu) put his podium finish down to the "massive banger" he pulled at the end of his run.
"Beyond gassed on the last trick in my run, I managed to land it my first time ever trying it."
Here’s my 3rd Place Pro run 🥉 Beyond gassed on the last trick in my run i managed to land it my first time ever trying it 🤩 Now onto Melbourne in May 🙃 🎥- @jeanluclibeau @scootabrad @logan__wat 🛴 @mgp_actionsports ⛑ @harshprotectivegear 🇳🇿 #mgpnewzealand @rickymalcolm #vx9 #maddgear
Younger brother, Maka (13), achieved a great result too finishing first again in his grade and booking a spot, along with Kahu, at the Australasian Scooter Championship at Empire Skatepark, Melbourne in May.
The top place finish is Maka's second consecutive year winning the local nationals and continues his NZ No.1 ranking.
Mother Rachel Day-Brown (Ngāi Tahu) says she is "so stoked for them." "They were outstanding and are really happy about it."
The brothers are the first siblings in their sport to secure sponsorship with a major international brand.
MADD Gear's Ricky Malcolm says the company are blown away by the results but are most impressed by the boys' humble and inspiring attitudes.
"These guys continue to prove themselves as athletes and brand ambassadors. Beyond the competition, they've been representing our brand professionally, inspiring their peers and the kids around them throughout the country," he says.
"The Day-Brown bros are humble enough to know it's not all about them, it's about the scooter community and the values we all stand for."
A member of Kahu's pro tour team performs a little 'showtime' for the young fans in Napier. Photo/Supplied
Malcolm says the two brought focus and X-factor to their rides at the Kiwi nationals.
"Maka's runs at nationals were slick, but as he knows there was just three points difference between first, second and third in his age group.
"It shows how competitive the sport is and there are other incredible riders alongside him."
The MADD team were especially impressed by Kahu's performance.
"Kahu blew us away again with his riding. Despite a few slip-ups and going a few seconds overtime with his final trick - which didn't count - he was just more stoked that he landed it," Malcolm says.
"This year was a big step up from his previous year's age group, straight into a pro division 3rd place was a MADD achievement.
"Some of our older pro riders haven't made it to the podium in a long time, so this was an awesome result."
Video/Scooter Brad (YouTube)
The hard work on and off the skatepark is paying off for the boys, seeing them draw in fans not just locally but across the world.
"We've seen that Maka and Kahu have both grown their international following online and are pushing themselves to land new tricks and continually up their game."
Melbourne will be the brothers' fourth consecutive Australasian championships, and an opportunity for Maka to edge nearer to a professional contract.
"I can't give anything specific away at this stage regarding his contract, but if he keeps on this track he could join his brother in the pro ranks, eventually," Malcolm says.
Kahu high-fives a young fan in Napier during the pro team tour of the country. Photo/Supplied
Last year, Kahu's 5th place finish in Brisbane was enough to convince his sponsors to offer him a professional contract. This year he will need to finish in the top 13 places to go onto the worlds in London.
But Malcolm is downplaying any emphasis on results, bringing it back to basics and the reason kids the world over love the sport.
"The guys know that we want them to ride for fun, for themselves and to represent MADD Gear well," he says.
"Whatever the result, they will have an awesome time with their mates and if we get a podium placement out of them they'll be rewarded."