• Gumbaynggirr skater and artist Brodie Jarrett (Facebook)Source: Facebook
This weekend a young Gumbaynggirr skater and artist from Ballina will compete in the Oceania Continental Skate Qualifier, the gateway to world tours and the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
By
Rachael Hocking

Source:
NITV News
2 Mar 2017 - 4:28 PM  UPDATED 2 Mar 2017 - 4:28 PM

One year ago Brodie Jarrett had his dreams crushed, when a dislocated elbow quashed his chances of entering the same comp he will compete in in two days at Manly Beach in Sydney.

This time around he isn’t going to let anything stop him, including a broken ankle.

“About two weeks ago I was practicing for this comp at one of my local skate parks and rolled it really bad, heard it crack,” he said.

“I haven’t actually been to the doctor yet to get it checked out... This means so much to me, you know? And I’ve been working hard to get as far as I am now and you can’t let something slip away just cause of a little niggle.”

That drive has been building since Brodie first picked up a skateboard ten years ago. And now, he’s on the cusp of making it as a pro.

Brodie was offered a place in this year's Vans Park Series Oceania Continental Championships, held in conjunction with the Australian Open of Surfing, where undiscovered skaters are given the chance to fast-track their careers and qualify for the VPS World Championships, and a chance to earn a spot on the 2018 VPS World Tour.

“It’s kind of scary, you know? You could end up skating for the country. So it’s very exciting, as well as very intimidating at the same time,” Brodie said.

“If I can come out on top with a wildcard into the pro series, I’d be ecstatic.”

Making it pro isn’t cheap. Most skaters are expected to fund their way across the world once accepted into the tour.

Brodie said when his time comes the help of sponsors will help get him over the line. But he also sustains his career through his own business, Dreamtime Skateboards.

“In my downtime when I am injured, I’ll paint up and I do paint quite a lot of skateboards,” Brodie said.

One of his most popular designs depicts a sunset and landscape in the colours of the Aboriginal flag.

Making it into the World Series is also one way of auditioning for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, where for the first time skateboarding will compete as an official sport.

“If you can win a gold medal and represent your country and do your people proud? I’m gonna,” Brodie said.

While his hopes are set high, Brodie does have plans if he doesn’t make the cut come Saturday.

“I need to go this ankle checked out! And then probably have a bit of a rest I think, before making moves for the next comp.”