My Hero: Danny Wainwright by Jenna Selby

Danny Wainwright’s ollie inspired a generation of skaters including Jenna Selby

My Hero, a new regular, best read with Dave Grohl singing softly in your head. This week UK skate pioneer and founder of Rogue Skateboards Jenny Selby on why she rates Danny Wainwright

“My hero would have to be Danny Wainwright. Back when I first started skating in 1998 he was always all over the skate mags. He is perhaps one of the best skaters ever to come out of the UK/ Europe and of course he owned a skate shop in Bristol (though at the time in my opinion it was a bit too cool for itself!). He became world famous for breaking the world record for the highest ollie (44.5 inches) on February 6th 2000. The title stood for 10 years before it was broken by 19-year-old Aldrin Garcia with a 45 inch leap.
When I first started entering competitions, Carhartt took me over to The European Championships in Basel, it was 2002. I was so nervous; I’d only ever competed in 2 comps before that and both were fairly low key compared to the craziness and scale of the Euros. I did my first run; I think I only landed a couple of tricks, I was just so aware of how many people were watching. They ran through the other contestants and then called my name out again. When it was all over I stood at the side in a bit of a daze. This guy came over from the other side of the park and said “I’ve just found out you’re from the UK, well done for entering, you did really well.” I looked up and it was Danny Wainwright standing there. I think I then became more shocked about the fact he’d made the effort to come over to speak to me, this guy I’d seen countless times featured in Sidewalk and Document – someone who really was a bit of a hero. I thanked him but replied saying something like “I was really bad, I was just too nervous.” He said, “Don’t worry we all get nervous, you did well.” Up until that point I’d always imagined that guys just skated comps like there was nothing too it. It was nice to find out that it wasn’t just me.
It has been one of those things that has stuck with me ever since. For someone to offer that type of encouragement, especially someone you look up to can really make a difference and push you on to do better.”

Jenna Selby runs the UK Skate Jam which will take place on 29 June at Pioneer Skatepark in St. Albans

For more Jenna Selby here’s a recent Pro Chat interview with her

She also wrote this beginner’s guide to skateboarding for us a while back


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