Alex Sorgente skateboards at the Nitro World Games on Aug. 11, 2018 in Vista, Calif.
As skateboarding draws closer to debuting in the Olympics, the picture of who might be there representing the United States grows brighter.
Alex Sorgente and Brighton Zeuner won the men’s and women’s titles, respectively, in the 2018 Vans Park Series Pro Tour with victories in the closing event in Suzhou, China, on Saturday. It was the second overall title for both Americans, who won the inaugural Vans Park Series championships in 2016.
Zeuner, a 14-year-old from Encinitas, California, had finished on the podium at every contest in the series this year but hadn’t won until Saturday. She competed at the X Games for the first time at the age of 11 in 2016, then won her first Vans Park Series title. In July, she won her second X Games gold medal in a row.
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Zeuner’s top run on Saturday was an 89.67, ahead of Brazil’s Yndiara Asp with 88.13. U.S. skater Jordyn Barratt was third with a score of 84.33.
Sorgente, 20, also won his second consecutive X Games gold medal in July to match his second Vans Park Series title. Sorgente locked down the victory on a trick-heavy final run to score 90.37, ahead of Brazil’s Pedro Barros, who was runner-up with 89.83. Tom Schaar of the U.S. was third with a score of 88.03 as seven of the eight top spots went to Americans.
Next up for Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 hopefuls is the first Olympic-sanctioned event in the history of the sport. The men and women who finished in the top eight of the Vans Pro Series will be pre-seeded into the semifinals at the World Skate Park Skateboarding World Championships in Nanjing, China, beginning next week.
Karen Price is a reporter from Pittsburgh who has covered Olympic sports for various publications. She is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.