Skateboarder Bryce Wettstein advances to women’s park final, finishing sixth
Bryce Wettstein competes in the women’s skateboard park preliminaries at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games on August 04, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan.
With the talent of the women’s skate park at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, the chances of an American medal were considered a little distant.
Still, Bryce Wettstein put on a performance that should inspire other American girls after the discipline’s debut on the Olympic program. This manifested in her enthusiasm and love for the sport despite not winning a medal.
The 17-year-old Encinitas, Calif. Native finished sixth Wednesday at Ariake Urban Sports Park in Tokyo. The best of her three 45-second runs was 45.40.
Sakura Yosozumi, 19, from Japan, won the sport’s inaugural gold medal with a score of 60.09, while Japanese Kokona Hiraki, 12, took silver with 59.04 and Briton Sky Brown, 13, bronze. at 56.47.
After qualifying fifth with a 44.50, Wettstein – ranked eighth in the world – tied that score in her first round of the final to temporarily take the lead. Sitting fourth after the first round, Wettstein couldn’t complete a round and fell, settling for a 17.96. She was unable to improve on sixth place on her third run, falling as she attempted a bone-to-finger flipping trick early on.
Wettstein’s best result in four world championship appearances was sixth in 2018. Even though other athletes felt the pressure to perform, Wettstein appeared to be in another skate park instead of competing in the Olympics. After one of her qualifying runs and her third run in the final, she took a few extra seconds on her board to run the pool-style course, just enjoying the moment.
She even played her ukulele during athlete presentations before the final.
“When I skate, I feel like I’m sort of in a different cosmos – more like my own universe,” Wettstein told Glamor ahead of the Olympics.
The other two Americans, Brighton Zeuner and Jordyn Barratt, did not advance to the final. Zeuner, a 17-year-old Arizona native who lives in Encinitas and is ranked 12th, was 11th with 34.06 from her last run. Barratt, a 22-year-old Hawaiian native who lives in Oceanside, Calif., And is ranked 13th, had a score of 35.22 in her first run to finish 12th.
The eighth and final qualifying score was 41.59.
The men’s park takes place on Thursday.
Want to follow Team USA athletes during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games? Visit TeamUSA.org/Tokyo2020 for the medal table, results and competition schedule.