White Rock skateboarder Andy Anderson goes pro, keeps Olympic dreams alive

The White Rock native begins international skateboarding tour next week

White Rock skateboarder Andy Anderson pictured with his ambulance in Venice Beach. (@AuthenticAndyAnderson Instagram photo)

It’s almost never a good sign when an ambulance pulls up to a skatepark.

But White Rock residents, particularly those who have their finger on the pulse of the skateboarding community, know that when an ambulance cruises the streets emblazoned with Powell-Peralta stickers, it could only mean one thing: Andy Anderson is in town.

The White Rock native has been living out of his ambulance for the last three months in California while training his craft for the 2020 summer Olympics in Tokyo.

Recently, Anderson was signed pro with Powell-Peralta, a historic skateboarding brand that Anderson’s coach Sean Hayes described as one of the most iconic, legendary brands in the sport.

Saturday, Anderson held a launch party for his new skateboard under the Powell-Peralta brand. Within the first 12 hours of the board being on the market, the deck sold out and the company is already on its fourth run of manufacturing.

Although going pro with such a company is quite the achievement on its own, what’s just as significant, Hayes told PAN, is Anderson’s international ranking 15 months ahead of the 2020 games.

RELATED: White Rock skateboarder eyes 2020 Olympics

There are two disciplines that are to be part of the 2020 games: Street skating and bowl.

Anderson is ranked first in Canada for bowl, and about fourth or fifth for street skating.

Each skateboarding event in the Olympics is to have 20 competitors, and each country can obtain a maximum of three spots in each event.

Last November, Anderson finished 21st in a world bowl skating championship in Japan.

“However, there is a skater quota for each country. So when he came 21st in Japan, there was four Americans and four Brazilians ahead of him, which takes up a couple spots. He’s right on the bubble and quickly improving. That positions him to be a potential skater for bowl skating and also puts him as Canada’s number one bowl skater. He’s also Canada’s only skater doing both disciplines, both street and park,” Hayes said.

Although Anderson is back in Canada now, he’s only touching base before he embarks on an international tour of competitions and training.

Tuesday, Anderson and Hayes will be heading to Australia, before going to China then London.

Anderson told PAN last week that the he’s living a childhood dream.

“It’s literally what I wanted to do since I was a little kid. It’s just sick to not have let go of that dream and it came true,” Anderson said. “A lot of stuff is happening, I’m getting invited to more places just for being more known. I’ve been making a lot of promotional videos on YouTube to promote stuff and that’s been a helping hand.”

Anderson frequently posts videos of himself skateboarding around the world on his Instagram account, which has amassed more than 72,000 followers.

Although it took a countless number of hours grinding his skill to find the level of success he’s obtained, Anderson said the fanfare is surprising.

“You plant seeds and hope that they grow but you can’t count on it. It’s existing right now and it might not exist for much longer, or maybe it will. You just got to keep planting seeds,” Anderson said.

Anderson is a familiar face at the World Freestyle Skateboard Round Up competition at the Cloverdale Rodeo and Country Fair.

The competition, to be held May 17-19, has a history of attracting the biggest names in freestyle skateboarding.

Unfortunately, Anderson said he’s “super sad” that he won’t be able to attend this year’s event, as he’ll be in China.

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