Yuto Horigome of Japan won the first-ever gold medal in skateboarding at the Olympics on Saturday night in the United States in the men’s street skateboarding final.
Many people were introduced to skateboarding for the first time thanks to the broadcast from Tokyo’s Ariake Urban Sports Park.
World’s No. 2 Player behind American Nyjah Huston
The men’s street skateboarding final was the first of four skateboarding events at the Tokyo Olympics; The women’s final will take place Sunday night in the United States, and the women’s and men’s park disciplines will be performed on August 3 and 4, respectively.
As expected, Horigome breezed through to Saturday’s final after entering the Olympics as the world’s No. 2 player behind American Nyjah Huston.
When the skaters finished their two 45-second runs, Horigome, who had fallen on both, was in fourth place, behind Brazil’s Kelvin Hoefler, the United States’ Jagger Eaton, and Nyjah Huston. Things seemed bleak for the 22-year-old.
Two 45-second runs are followed by five attempts at a best trick, with the top four scores counting in the street skateboarding final.
Horigome came racing back to stomp four of his five tricks, making his incredibly difficult moves look practically casual. His last three tries were all successful, with scores of 9.3 or higher.
For a perfectly executed nollie 270 nosegrind, the judges gave him the highest possible score of 9.50 and won him the competition. When he reached that position, he was competing just against himself.
That helped Horigome earn a spot on the winners’ podium. Silver went to Hoefler, while bronze went to Eaton.
Biggest Surprise of the Day
The biggest surprise of the day was that Huston, the current world number one, didn’t even make the top three. Huston, though, made it very obvious right off the bat that he was not going to play it safe and would instead go for the jugular on each and every play.
It was the Cab kickflip backside lipslide with 360 fakie that gave him the most trouble. Four successive tumbles, though, were the final straw.
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