13-Year-Old Rayssa Leal Won Second Place In Women’s Skateboarding, And You May Know Her From Somewhere

She is HBO’s Betty in real life.

Everyone stop what you’re doing right now — we need to talk about Rayssa Leal.

She’s an icon. She is the moment. She is a 13-year-old skateboarder from Brazil and a newly minted silver medalist in women’s street skateboarding.

Xinhua News Agency / Xinhua News Agency via Getty Images

The sport, as you all know, made its debut at the Olympics in Tokyo.

I’m going to pause for a second so you truly get it. She’s literally 13. THIRTEEN!!!

Xinhua News Agency / Xinhua News Agency via Getty Images

Naturally, she celebrated the win on her Instagram, captioning the photo in Portuguese, “We made history.”

She continued, “I don’t know how to explain everything I’m experiencing. I only know how to thank you🙏🏽. Thank you God🙏🏽. Thank you family, friends, @cbskskate and to all of you who cheered a lot🤩🇧🇷💚💛.”

Xinhua News Agency / Xinhua News Agency via Getty Images

The humility, the gratitude, the iconicity!

After being asked a question about her medaling, she said, “I don’t want to have responsibility. I want to go on being the lively little girl I am for all of Brazil.”

Patrick Smith / Getty Images

Which is just the best answer ever.

And while she’s making history in Tokyo, there’s somewhere else you might have seen her.

Yup — Rayssa went viral on the since-defunct platform (RIP) back when she was 8, with a little help from skating legend Tony Hawk. She’s known as the “Little Skateboard Fairy,” given that her outfit of choosing was a sparkly blue pixie dress complete with fairy wings.

I don’t know anything about this but it’s awesome: a fairytale heelflip in Brazil by #RayssaLeal (via @oliverbarton)

10:18 PM – 08 Sep 2015

Rayssa Leal/Vine / Twitter: @tonyhawk

The determination and grit is just unmatched.

Just look at her go.

Rayssa Leal / Vine

Effortless, darling.


Rayssa Leal / Vine

This is just icon behavior — you can’t not clap and cheer.

Here she is in another video, just absolutely soaring and flying.

Rayssa Leal shredding at the #Tokyo2020 Olympics is so cool. She burst onto the scene wearing fairy wings and tutus and now at 13 will be on the medal podium.

04:28 AM – 26 Jul 2021

Twitter: @BensHoops / Via Twitter: @BensHoops

And here are just a bunch of shots of her being the coolest.

Lionel Bonaventure / AFP via Getty Images

And here.

Ezra Shaw / Getty Images

Here too.

Patrick Smith / Getty Images

An icon.

Ezra Shaw / Getty Images

And this too.

Jeff Pachoud / AFP via Getty Images

Absolutely wild to think about how this is just the beginning for her.

Here, Rayssa congratulates Japan’s Momiji Nishiya — who is also 13 — on her gold medal win.

🥇 Japan’s Momiji Nishiya 🥈 Brazil’s Rayssa Leal Both medalists in women’s street skateboarding. Both 13 years old. 🤯 🎥: @NBCOlympics

11:29 AM – 26 Jul 2021

Twitter: @TheAthletic / Via Twitter: @TheAthletic

I’m absolutely obsessed with this sisterhood and camaraderie.

To watch Rayssa’s full performance, click here.

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