George Orton- 2018 Skateboarding Hall of Fame Inductee

George Orton

Find George on social Media

George Orton was one of the most bio vert skaters of the late 1970s. Born in Long Beach, California, George was a hyperactive kid with ADHD who was always involved in school sports. At age seven, he discovered surfing and skateboarding on a Black Knight with clay wheels. Around 1974, George stole a board with urethane wheels from Infinity Surf Shop in Huntington Beach. From that point on, it was all about surfing on land as he cruised spots like the banked San Gabriel River Bed. Although George’s parents hoped he would get a scholarship from baseball or wrestling, George just wanted to skate. That way, he could be his own person without anyone telling him what to do. After gaining sponsorship from Pro-Am, Bennett and Powerflex, George’s daily intake of Cheerios really kicked in as he invented the frontside air in a square pool with coping that stuck out way too far. In fact, he was so adept at the move, he pulled a three-foot one off the top of Skatepark Paramount’s Vertibowl, which boasted a full eight feet of vert!

George’s skating was so gnarly, he regularly exploded trucks upon landing. Around 1979, Steve Olson put George on the Santa Cruz team, when the latter pulled off the first air in a doubles routine (over Frank Blood) at the Big O. By 1982, during skateboarding’s second downturn, George quit skating, and, inspired by his great grandfather, raced the American Motorcyclist Association circuit (in which he was ranked the number two amateur in moto-x) and flew airplanes. Later, he got into the aluminum siding, gutter and metal business. In 1996, George won the world downhill skateboarding championships at Tuscany Hill in Lake Elsinore, clocking in at 61.87 mph, defeating legends like John Hutson and Roger Hickey in the process. He also won $60,000 at the Gravity Games, and popped out both shoulders during a slam at the Bondi Bowl in Australia, after which he suffered a numb arm for five months. George now lives on Maui and surfs a lot.