You’ll want to do it too after watching young skater Sky Brown “glide through the air.”
Our writer on being enticed back to his youth obsession by his children to join the burgeoning ranks of “skate fathers” Blunt to fakies, boardslides, aerials, and backside grinds… just some of the colorful nomenclature coming our way as “park” skating makes its Olympic debut next week. And if you think the tricks are difficult, just wait till you see them in action.
Twenty skaters compete in each of the men’s and women’s competitions, ensuring plenty of thrills and spills.
Overall, it’s astounding that this ultimate outsider pastime – synonymous with teen rebellion and parental disapproval since 1985, when Marty McFly first launched a worldwide boom in Back To The Future — has been given insider status for the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2020. Although not everyone in the sport agrees, it hasn’t stopped an uptick in interest over the last 18 months, which has included re-engaging seasoned 40-something “dad skaters” like myself (more on that later).
Nyjah Huston, skateboarding’s biggest superstar, crashed out in the “street” finals on Sunday – suffering a series of “slams” — enabling Tokyo-born Yuto Horigome, 22, to win men’s gold. The three women on the podium in the women’s street competition were all under 42 years old. Momiji Nishiya of Japan took gold ahead of Brazil’s Rayssa Leal, aged 13, and Funa Nakayama, a 16-year-old local hero.
Next week, two young Britons, Sky Brown and Bombette Martin, a relative newcomer at 15 years old, will compete for Team GB in the “park” event, showing once and for all that women CAN fly.
Brown, who has an English father and a Japanese mother, is Team GB’s youngest summer Olympian by a month, breaking the record set by Margery Hinton of Great Britain in the 200m breaststroke at the 1928 Olympics in Amsterdam.
“If you’re 10 years old and you’re watching Sky Brown flying through the air, you could think, ‘She’s like a superhero,’” says Darren Pearcy, 37, of Derby, who manages Team GB’s skate team. Darren, who sees the two teenagers as the, says, “If I was 10 and saw someone soaring through the air, I’d think, “Wow, I want to do that.” “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”