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Business Impact

Extreme Skates

What do you get when you cross skis, mountain-bike tires and in-line skates? A new sport-or at least that’s what Jamie Page and Mark Batho hope. They founded Florence, Mass.-based Crosskate in April after inventing the hybrid skate.

The new skate incorporates 9-inch air-filled tires and a rigid boot on a sturdy metal frame. The front wheel turns when a rider leans and does not roll backward, easing uphill climbing. The back wheel has a bodyweight-controlled brake. Riders can use poles in a motion similar to either cross-country or downhill skiing, depending on terrain. Indeed, the similarity to skiing has drawn the attention of ski resorts eager to run lifts, open trails and draw summer clientele. The inventors hope to begin online marketing of Crosskates as early as next year.

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