Shaun White is arguably the most successful professional action sports athlete of all time. Even with his hard work ethic combined with natural talent, that did not come easily. There are not many athletes that come close to his resume of achievements with three Olympic Gold Medals and 23 X-Games medals in both snowboarding and skateboarding.
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In the preview of Not a Sports Show with Lil Rel Howery, White explains some of the challenges of his early years. People claimed he was given “kids points” while he was winning every contest, despite his extraordinary skill.
With his extensive resume, White has been professional for a long time – since the age of thirteen. He was a phenomenon since day one, and with that, came difficulty with other snowboarders – they could not beat him and he was not willing to lose. White was a professional snowboarder riding with a children’s line of clothes. He reported the Burton children’s line had bumblebees on it. When other older professionals looked at him, White remarked, “people didn’t take me seriously.”
In the interview, White remarks:
“I mean the early years were tough, just because I would compete with kids my same age and you’re not going to like hang out, after, and they’re all bummed out, and I was on a tear, so I would be winning and winning and I all of the sudden became alienated as like, ‘Well there he is, the one to beat.’ “
White, now 34, is working on qualifying for his fifth Olympic Games – Beijing 2022. He just competed in the first of four Olympic qualifying events where he placed fourth overall, but first place for Americans. This puts him in good standing to compete in the 2022 Winter Olympic games.