Tom Schaar: Double Threat
Now age 17, it's been five years since Tom Schaar showed up in LA as an 89-lb. 5-ft. nothing tween. Today, he's pushing 6 feet, 150 pounds and comes to Minneapolis as a dual threat in Skateboard Big Air and Park.
Schaar last competed in XG Big Air at Austin 2015, when he was 40 pounds lighter and 5 inches shorter. His five medals have come on the Big Air ramp, but don't sleep on him in Park. Schaar finished a strong 5th in the discipline at XG Austin 2016 and cruised to victory at the Road to X Games: Boise Park Qualifier on June 10. That win followed his second career title at the prestigious Vans Pool Party in mid-May.
As an X Games athlete since age 12, it's only fitting that Schaar is in the record books before graduating from high school. He was the first to land a 1080 on a skateboard (March 2012). At XG Austin 2014, the then 14-year-old became the youngest Big Air gold medalist by more than 10 years.
Only four athletes have earned medals in both SKB Big Air and a non-Big Air discipline at the same X Games. No skater has medaled in both Big Air and Park at the same event.
- DOB: 9/14/1999. Age: 17
- Five X Games medals in two disciplines: Big Air gold, silver and 2 bronze; 2015 Big Air Doubles bronze. Tom has competed in 4 disciplines: Big Air, Vert, Park and Big Air Doubles. Earned bronze at the most recent XG Big Air comp (2015 Austin).
- Second-youngest SKB gold medalist in XG history at age 14 (behind Ryan Sheckler, who was 13 when he won 2003 Park).
- Earned an XG Minneapolis 2017 Park roster spot by landing a stellar run at the Boise Park Qualifier that left him nearly 4 points clear of the field. In the pool, Tom combines the powerful vert tricks of Pedro Barros with the style and flow of Curren Caples. While he doesn't attack the bowl with Pedro's aggressiveness, the amplitude of his 540s might surpass even those of Barros'. Schaar could crash the X Games podium, especially if the course features lots of transition and vert elements.
- Won the prestigious Vans Pool Party on May 13, 2017. It was his second Pool Party victory; the first was in 2015. Also won the Vans SKB Park Series Global qualifier in March 2017 in Manly Beach, Australia. The strong field included Pedro Barros (3rd).
- Sometimes travels with fellow Park skater Greyson Fletcher. They did an Element trip to New Zealand at the end of 2016.
- The Encinitas bowl is close to his house so he skates there frequently. Rarely hits a vert ramp.
- Tom is focused on Park but will squeeze in time on Bob Burnquist's mega ramp just before X Games. He's extremely consistent, which accounts for his medal haul. He probably will attempt a tailgrab 720 over the gap and stalefish 900 on the quarterpipe, though he doesn't rule out another 1080.
- Loves plain Oreos, but outside of that he likes to eat healthy and sleep at least 7 hours a night.
- His parents (Regan and Nick) always travel with him (per his sponsor agreements).
- In 2016, Tom bought an Audi S5 with money he saved. "He loves that car," says Regan.
- In 2012, his family moved from Malibu to Cardiff so he could skate more and still attend school. He will graduate from San Dieguito Academy in January 2018, a semester early.
- Jeff Jewett originally coached Tom, something relatively unheard of in skating. Chris Kelly, a BMX rider-turned gymnastics coach, helped Tom with aerial awareness.
- Skates daily on the mini ramp in his backyard (built in Jan. 2014 by California Ramp Works). His parents built him a vert ramp when he was 9.
- Was the youngest skater to land a 900 (age 12, Dec. 2011) before Asher Bradshaw set a new mark, and the youngest (at the time) to land a 720 on a vert ramp (age 10).
Follow Tom Schaar on Instagram.