Stick a pin in the middle of a map of Porirua and it won't land far from Ascot Park. This is often the suburb of choice for first-home buyers for two very good reasons - its central location means it's close to Porirua's CBD, beaches, the motorway and public transport and its comparatively modest house prices means homeowners can manage the mortgage payments and still have a life. Ascot Park's subdued property prices are primarily because the neighbourhood is traditionally considered to be a part of Porirua East, an area whose image problem persists. However, people forget that it also borders four affluent suburbs (Whitby, Papakowhai, Paremata and Aotea), that its kindergarten and primary school have excellent reputations, and that it is home to the Wellington region's biggest rugby-league club, the Porirua Vikings. As for the curiously wonderful street names like Syntax Place, Sombrero View and Limerick Grove, that's down to the three city councillors who, in 1969, named the new suburb after Royal Ascot Racecourse in England and its roads after famous race horses of the day.