2024 Paris Olympics

US Olympic Skateboarding Team has serious San Diego flavor for 2024 Paris Games

Nearly half of Team USA hails from SD County

NBC Universal, Inc.

History's most decorated skater is Torrey Pines High School alum Tony Hawk. The first national skateboarding competition ever held took place in Del Mar. So, it makes almost too much sense that the United States Olympic Skateboarding Team is stuffed with San Diegans.

On Monday, less than a month away from the start of the 2024 Paris Olympics, Team USA gathered in Vista for an official introduction. Of the 12 skaters ... three each in men's and women's park and street competitions ... five are from San Diego County and even more have moved here to be a part of the Southern California skateboarding mecca. In fact, nearly every single competitor in the Park competition hails from SD:

Men's Park

Tate Carew - 19, San Diego (#1 in the world)
Gavin Bottger - 17, Oceanside (#3 in the world)
Tom Schaar - 24, San Dieguito HS alum (#4 in the world)

Women's Park

Bryce Wettstein - 20, Encinitas (#8 in the world, 2020 Olympian)
Ruby Lilley - 17, Oceanside (#11 in the world)

Lilley was born in Maryland but moved to Oceanside as a youth to train. Hers is a similar story to Jagger Eaton, the world's 4th-ranked Street skater and a bronze medalist at the 2020 Tokyo Games, who moved from Arizona to San Diego as a youth to pursue his skateboarding career. Being in the birthplace of skating is a big reason many of them earned a spot on the Olympic team.

"Within ten miles of where I live in Encinitas, there's 20 of probably the best skate parks in the world," says Schaar. "So if you do grow up skating here, you'll probably get pretty good. Also the people that just skate around here, like just the regular kids that you see at the skate park, are really good. That kind of pushes you to kind of be better."

In fact, some of the skate parks even have their own personalities.

"Everything has come from the parks around me. They've been there for us. It's like they have a heartbeat, like they're real," says Wettstein. "I swear, it's like a family. I think growing up around here has meant the world, because I don't know where I would have been if I had grown up somewhere else. I mean, I probably would still be skateboarding, but maybe speaking a different language. But I'm so grateful and I can't ask for anything else."

The final member of the Women's Park trio is Mina Stess. The Street team looks like this:

Men's Street

Jagger Eaton (2020 Olympian)
Nyjah Houston (2020 Olympian)
Chris Joslin

Women's Street

Mariah Duran
Paige Heyn
Poe Pinson

The Olympic skating competition begins with the Men's and Women's Street competitions on July 26 and 27. The Park event takes place on August 6 and 7.

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