Meet the Olympians: Rayssa Leal (Brazil)

February 01, 2020 4 min read

The 12 Year Old Skater That’s Taking The World By Storm

For the first time in the history of the Olympics, the upcoming 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan are set to showcase the highest level of skateboarding talent in the world. There will be 20 skaters in each division; Men’s Park, Men’s Street, Women’s Park, and Women’s Street. With only 80 skateboarders able to earn a spot at the Olympics, the qualifying contests leading up to the Games have been extremely competitive. 

Currently near the top of the leaderboards is Rayssa Leal. She’s ranked second in the world in Women’s Street. Of course, with the second qualifying season still underway, the Olympic World Skateboarding Ranking could have a shake-up by the time the 2020 Olympics roll around. However, we’re confident we will be seeing Rayssa Leal compete. It’s also very likely that she’ll earn herself a spot on the podium! 

In this blog, we’ll take a look at Rayssa Leal’s amazing skateboarding career, and we’ll shine a light on some of her most notable contest results from this year’s Olympic qualifying contests. Be sure to continue reading to learn more about the #2 ranked Women’s Street skater, as we will review some of her sponsors, contest runs, best tricks and more!

How Do You Qualify For The Olympics?

The biggest confusion behind the Olympics is picking out the competitors. You’ve probably seen many names, but you’ve already heard that there are only 16 spots. So, how does this work?

Selecting the competitors is based on a point system. These points are earned by skating in specifically sanctioned skateboarding events. There are two qualifying seasons. The first was from January 2019 to September 30, 2019. So this one has already happened.

The second qualifying season is from October 1, 2019 to May 31, 2020. The skater’s best two scores from the first season get added to their best 5 scores from the second season. This will create the Olympic World Skateboarding Rankings.

From this ranking, you will get who is eligible to compete in the Olympic Games. Now, part of what determines this is that there are quotas that have to be met for each country and continent. This way you can have an equal balance of skaters from different countries and not only skaters from USA, Japan, and Brazil. 

Okay, now let’s get into the actual skaters of the Olympics! It’s without a doubt one of the biggest achievements for a skater to go on this journey to the Olympics. But, it looks like they’re having a blast, so I think they’re enjoying the journey!

Who is Rayssa Leal?

Rayssa Leal was born on January 4th, 2008, in Imperatriz, Brazil. And we know what you’re thinking. Yes, she just turned 12 years old!

Rayssa started skateboarding at the age of 6, quickly progressed and earned internet fame in 2015, when a video of her skateboarding in a fairy costume went viral. It wasn’t just the fact that the video showed a 7 year old girl skateboarding in a fairy outfit.

It was more so her level of talent, style, and determination that got the attention of the skate community. I mean, heelflipping down a set of stairs, tweaking it, and catching it with the back foot? Rayssa had skill beyond her years!

After competing more and more in the competition circuit, she started getting more recognition for her skateboarding. She placed 3rd at the Oi STU Open in 2018, and appeared at the Rio de Janeiro stop of the Street League World Championships in January of 2019.

She was invited to compete in London, at the Street League World Skate Finals in May of 2019, where she placed 3rd overall. Clearly this young, goofy-footed skateboarding phenom was where she belonged, competing amongst the very best skateboarders on the world stage. 

What Has Rayssa Leal Been Up to Lately?

Rayssa Leal is a member of the Brazilian Olympic Skateboarding Team. She is currently ranked 2nd in the Olympic World Skateboarding Ranking for Women’s Street with 148,000 points. Ahead of her in first place is fellow Brazilian Olympian, Pamela Rosa. 

Just in 2019, she’s made several key finishes in the Olympic Qualifying Contests. Below are a few notable ones. All of which are for Women’s Street contests.

  • World Skate Street League Pro – Los Angeles, CA (1st place)
  • World Skate Oi STU Open – Rio De Janeiro, Brazil (2nd place)
  • Street League World Champions – Sa Paulo (2nd place)
  • X-Games – Norway (4th place)
  • X-Games – Minneapolis (4th place)

With all of these amazing contest performances, it’s no wonder she’s currently in 2nd place. It’s amazing to see how, even at her young age, she’s placing high in these competitions. We cant’ wait to see what she’s going to do when she gets to the Olympics!

Some of Rayssa Leal’s sponsors include Nike SB, Stronger Trucks, Eight Eyes, Ecoprint, Rockstar Bearings, Autonomy Skateboards and Colégio Cebama. You may have seen some of her stuff around the internet, so let’s take a look at those.

Rayssa Leal Video Highlights

In Conclusion

As you can see, she’s extremely talented on a board. Even though she’s only 12 years old, she’s been skating for 6 years and has clearly put everything she can into it. We’re excited to see where she goes as she continues this journey!!

Though most of us will simply be watching the Olympics, Braille Skateboarding knows that some of you dream of competing at the Olympics one day. We can help you achieve that goal! Check out Skateboarding Made Simple in our Online Shop. It’s the most detailed lesson plan for skateboarding in existence, and you will surely improve your skills after watching and studying our SMS tutorials. With 9 different volumes, you’ll go from learning how to ride on a board, to skating skateparks and landing more advanced flatground tricks…FIRST TRY! Now get out there and skate!

What do you think of Rayssa Leal? What tricks do you think she’s practicing on her road to the Olympics? Who else should we cover as the skaters on their way to the Olympics? Leave it in the comments below!

Feature Image Credit: Brazil Olympic Committee

Alec O'Grady
Alec O'Grady


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