Local skateboarder ready for Paris Olympics

Local skateboarder ready for Paris Olympics

A New Mexican skateboarder is ready to compete in the Paris Olympics this year as one of 12 skateboarders competing for Team USA.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — New Mexican skateboarder Mariah Duran is ready to compete in the Paris Olympics this year as she qualified for the U.S. street skateboarding team.

Duran is one of 12 skateboarders who will represent Team USA in Paris. On the men’s side are Jagger Eaton, Chris Joslin, Nyjah Huston, Gavin Bottger, Tate Carew and Tom Scharr.

On the women’s side are Bryce Wettstein, Minna Stess, Ruby Lilley, Paige Heyn, Poe Pinson, and of course, Mariah Duran.

Duran is an Albuquerque native. She says she’s grateful for the opportunity to come. She also says he’s seen her sport grow in popularity among women and girls.

“There is a huge movement in women’s skateboarding. Me coming from when I could barely count like ten girls on my hand, to like now there’s a new girl popping up every day who is actually really good at skating, cares about it [and does] really good tricks. Yeah, I would say watching the women’s skateboarding and also like being in it, like yeah it’s crazy. You don’t know what anybody else is gonna do. You don’t know the tricks that they are gonna do. I feel like the level is being pushed so fast now that we’re pretty close to like guys,” Duran said.

Duran, 27, will take on stairs and handrails that mimic the urban skateboarding experience. This is only the second year that skateboarding has been an Olympic sport. Duran qualified for the Summer 2021 games in Tokyo. She finished 13th.

In addition to competing in the Olympics, she claimed gold at the X Games in Minneapolis and Sydney, Australia, during the women’s street skateboarding competition in 2018. She has also qualified for the world championships in six of the last eight years.

Again, Duran calls Albuquerque home. Two months ago, she appeared at the South Valley Skate and Food Truck Fest at Rio Bravo Park. She held a skateboard clinic and taught skateboarders some tips, tricks and styles.

Coverage of the Paris Olympics is on KOB 4.