Skateboarding’s biggest mainstream star, Shaun White, will not be defending his Skateboard Vert gold medal at X Games Los Angeles 2012.
White’s publicist, Samantha Hill of WTK Public Relations, made the mildly surprising announcement just as fans were mentally preparing for a showdown between him and the guy he stole victory from last year, Pierre-Luc Gagnon.
"Shaun has decided to sit out this year's X Games in Los Angeles," said Hill (via ESPN). "This has been a lively year so far; he's now getting back on his skateboard and is excited for summer."
For what it’s worth, while White’s announcement did come as a surprise to some, Gagnon had a feeling that his rival wouldn’t show up this year.
"I was kind of expecting him not to skate this year," Gagnon told ESPN. "I know Shaun's been in New York and I know he doesn't have a ramp to skate right now. I definitely had a feeling that [X Games] didn't seem like his main priority, and he's not the kind of guy to show up and wing it."
What is White’s main priority right now? Well, via TMZ…
Snowboarding legend Shaun White is now officially the pimpest redhead in history -- because we have 100% deniable proof he is dating Bar Refaeli.
Yup, that makes sense.
The Shaun White-less Skateboard Vert Finals at X Games L.A. are set to go down on Saturday, June 30.