Japan's Ginwoo Onodera wrote his name in the X Games record books Sunday by becoming the competition's youngest men's skateboarding street gold medalist.
The X Games debutant, who turned 13 in February, put on a spectacular show for the home crowd at Chiba's Zozo Marine Stadium as he took victory in a final featuring all 15 entrants after the preliminary round was rained out a day earlier.
As he concluded a virtually flawless first run, Onodera triumphantly pumped his fists in the air before the judges revealed a total of 90.33 that saw him win gold, 6.67 points ahead of Brazil's Kelvin Hoefler. American Jamie Foy took bronze a further 0.33 back.
"I was thinking about putting everything I had into my tricks," said the diminutive Onodera, who became Japan's youngest national champion aged 12 last November. "I was able to do my best because everyone was supporting me."
The Yokohama native, a third-place finisher at February's world championships, received plaudits for his performance from the biggest name in the sport, Tony Hawk.
The 55-year-old skateboarding pioneer said Onodera was part of an exciting wave of young Japanese coming to the forefront of the sport.
"In the last few years, we've seen some of the best skaters and athletes coming from Japan, including what you just saw with Ginwoo winning the street," Hawk said during an onstage appearance.
"It's just really fun to be participating in skateboarding for so long, since the '80s, to see it come this far and to see the excitement here in Japan."
Two-time X Games best trick gold medalist Foy hailed Onodera's array of "eye-opening" tricks, singling out his "kickflip front blunt big spin on the big rail" for particular mention.
"That's something that if you told someone 10 years ago that was going to happen, and a little kid was going to do it, they'd be like (laughs), 'that's crazy.' But here we are today and it's happened," Foy said.
"For him to do that right now is amazing and I just can't wait to see where he goes in the future."
Japan's Moto Shibata took silver in the skateboard vert best trick final won by American Elliot Sloan, but it was Hawk who stole the show with his entry to the competition.
The California native, who finished seventh, said he had been campaigning to get vertical skateboarding events added to the Olympics alongside park and street.
"I think that halfpipe skating is something that's missing from the Olympics, so I'm trying to push to get it included in the Olympics soon enough, and I think it'll happen," he said.
In BMX, Japan's Yu Katagiri earlier in the day won the flatland competition in front of his home crowd, beating France's Jean William Prevost in the gold medal final.
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