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Forbes
Forbes
22 Jul 2023


Chloe Covell of Australia celebrates her gold medal in X Games women's skateboard street

VENTURA, CALIFORNIA - JULY 22: Chloe Covell of Australia competes in the Women's Skateboard Street ... [+] Final during the X Games California 2023 on July 22, 2023 in Ventura, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

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At X Games Chiba 2022, then 12-year-old Australian skateboarder Chloe Covell kicked open the door of women’s skateboarding with a statement bronze-medal performance in women’s street.

A few months later, she followed it up with two more back-to-back podium finishes—silver at X Games and then bronze at Dew Tour.

Since then, the teenager has continued racking up podium finishes in international competition ranging from Street League Skateboarding (SLS) to world championships, rapidly tallying points in the rankings that will determine the group of girls and women that will compete in the 2024 Paris Olympics, where skateboarding will appear on the program for the second time ever following its debut at the Tokyo Games.

On Saturday, Covell added another milestone to her fast-growing collection: with her statement win in the women’s street finals at X Games California in Ventura, she became the youngest women’s street gold medalist in X Games history. She had already been the youngest athlete to win two X Games medals before the age of 13.

The Aussie also did her home nation proud, becoming the first Australian woman to win gold in a Summer X Games discipline. She’ll look to bring an Olympic medal home for the Aussies at Paris 2024.

Covell only picked up a board about six years ago, inspired after she saw Nyjah Huston, arguably the world’s best street skater, competing at X Games. (He now considers himself her biggest fan.)

But for the teen, that still means she’s been skating for about half her life. She’s already got an arsenal of impressive tricks few other women—her age or otherwise—are doing.

On her third and final run at X Games Saturday, Covell was in bronze-medal position when she strung together a heelflip down the four-block of stairs and a statement 50-50 kickflip, ending with a frontside 50-50 down the double set of stairs.

With the win, Covell outperformed a veritable who’s who of female skateboarding powerhouses, including the queen of the discipline, Leticia Bufoni, and Olympic gold medalist Momiji Nishiya.

Nishiya had the chance to knock Covell off the top of the podium in her final run but had an uncharacteristic early fall on her frontside 50-50 attempt on the course’s sign.

At 13, Covell already has a gaggle of impressive sponsors including Nike NKE SB and Oakley. She’s undoubtedly becoming one of the most buzzed-about street skaters on the planet.

As for how she plans to celebrate her big win on Saturday? “Probably eat heaps of lollies,” she said.