Seniors giddy-up at scooter rodeo

Seniors giddy-up at scooter rodeo

Nelson's Lakeview Village hosted the first time event last week.



Scooter-riding seniors revved through an obstacle course Friday at Nelson’s Lakeview Village as a crowd cheered them on.

Nelson police Sgt. Dino Falcone directed  participants through three sets of back-up challenges in the parking lot. Next up was coming to a complete stop, which on a machine without brakes means timing the release of the throttle.

The final leg was a full-on sprint. Competitors began pushing their upper bodies forward in hopes of picking up more speed for the finish line.

Lionel Binette took the rodeo title in a time of 1:20.42.

Afterwards police offered a scooter safety presentation, noting that scooters are governed by the same laws that apply to pedestrians and are allowed to travel on sidewalks, whereas bicycles are not.

Laurie got into the rodeo theme with a cowboy hat, red kerchief and for kicks, classed it up with an empty bottle of red wine in hand while driving his scooter while warming up on a pre-ride of the obstacle course.

Sgt. Dino Falcone pulled Laurie over in a mock arrest to demonstrate the point:don’t drink and ride. Laurie, 93, said it was the first time he’s been handcuffed. “I’ve never been arrested before,”  he said. Falcone asked his secret and Laurie responded with a laugh: “Stay away from the bottle.” Tamara Hynd photos

Lakeview Village marketing director Landon Elliot said while this is the first event of this kind in Nelson, it is the second for parent company Golden Life, as they held one earlier this year in Cranbrook. A third rodeo is scheduled in Pincher Creek, Alta. Elliot said the rodeo was spurred on by their desire to promote scooter safety.

Scooting along

Lionel Binette 1:20.42

Barb McGee 1:21.12

Bev Mc Millan 1:36.28 (her first time on a scooter)

Walt Laurie 1:39.25

Pat Hickey 1:43.75

Len Mulholland 1:49.38 (electric wheelchair)

Louise O’Neil 1:52.75

Pictured: Youngsters Diana Ketawsky, who works in the kitchen, took  the drivers N off her vehicle and placed it on the back of her scooter before braving the course in a time of 1.17.98 plus a five second youth demerit for a final time of 1.23.98. Stephan Michaud, a scooter salesman and technical from Pharmasave broke the one minute mark with 59.17 but  a 20 second professional demerit was added. How does he drive these machines like a roadster? When scooters come in for repairs or adjustments Michaud tests the machines at their limit to ensure their performance. Submitted photo