- Thirteen-year-old Momiji Nishiya claimed Olympic victory in the women’s skateboarding event, making her one of the youngest gold medallists ever.
- Thirteen-year-old Brazilian Rayssa Leal and 16-year-old Funa Nakayama of Japan won silver and gold. respectively.
- This is the first time skateboarding is being included in the Olympics.
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Thirteen-year-old skateboarder Momiji Nishiya of Japan claimed victory on Monday in the women’s street skateboarding event at the Tokyo Olympics, making her one of the youngest-ever Olympic gold medalists.
-Olympics (@Olympics) July 26, 2021
Not only is she one of the games’ youngest competitors, but she is also Japan’s youngest-ever gold medalist, reported Japan Times.
In street skateboarding, competitors attempt various tricks in a course that mimics a street with handrails, stairs, curbs, benches, and walls. In the women’s street skateboarding event, the competition came down to Nishiya and 13-year old Rayssa Leal from Brazil at the Ariake Urban Sports Park in Tokyo.
Leal botched her landing coming down a rail, while Nishiya nailed her landing, ushering her to Olympic victory.
The Osaka native won with a score of 15.26, while Leal took home silver with 14.64, and 16-year-old Funa Nakayama, also from Japan, took home bronze with a score of 14.49.
-#TokyoOlympics (@NBCOlympics) July 26, 2021
The pair of 13-year-old gold and silver medalists congratulated each other after the competition with an embrace.
-7Olympics (@7olympics) July 26, 2021
Speaking to Nikkan Sports after her historic win, Nishiya said she wasn’t sure she would pull it off halfway through her run but received encouragement from the people around her.
Commenting on this year’s Olympics, the 13-year-old said competing in the games ” didn’t feel too different from the other competitions I’ve been to, tension-wise,” adding, “I really wanted to try to skate my best and not give up until the end.”
This is the first time skateboarding has been included in the Olympics, and it’s been a clean sweep for Japan so far. In Sunday’s men’s street event, 22-year-old Yuto Horigome edged out Brazilian Kelvin Hoefler and American Jagger Eaton to win gold.
According to Guinness World Records, the record for youngest gold medalist is still held by US diver Marjorie Gestring, who participated in the Summer Games in 1936 when she was 13 years and 268 days old. Nishiya was aged 13 years and 330 days on Monday.