Laura Demott/Turner was a female skateboarder from Berkeley, CA. In the early 1960s, about 1962 through 1965, Laura skateboarded for the “Topsider” skateboard team. She and her team mates got quite a bit of notoriety in the local news papers. (The Oakland Tribune, the San Francisco Chronicle and the Berkeley Gazette). This caught the eye of the promoter of the “San Francisco Sports and Boat Show”. He hired the Topsider team to demonstrate their skills along with the Hobie team from Southern California. This took place at the Cow Palace in San Francisco in December of 1964. The manager of the Hobie team recognized the talent of the Topsiders and decided to sponsor them as the Northern California Hobie skateboard team.
Laura, then Laurie did many demonstrations throughout Northern California in 1965. Everywhere she went, she inspired more females to try skateboarding.
Remember, this was ten years before Dogtown!
The spring of 1965 was ending and Laura and her team mates had put many hours of practice for the up coming National Skateboard Championships. They were held at La Palma stadium on May 22nd and 23rd of 1965. The contest was covered on National television by ABC’s Wide World of Sports. This contest was the peak of the clay wheel era. If you were either the male or female Grand Champion of this contest, you were the absolute best of the era! It was not an easy victory. The competition was tough and Coleen Boyd of the Southern Hobie team was a very close second. When all was said and done, Laurie Turner was the Grand Champion.
Laurie Turner was the first true National champion at an event where all of the great skaters showed up. She was the best female skateboarder of the clay wheel era and she has the shoulders of greatness that all female skaters who follow stand upon.
Laurie Turner has my utmost respect and my friendship for ever!
Longboard Girls Crew note: It would be nice if you comment this post showing your gratitude to Laurie. Cliff will print those comments and give them to Laurie during the SHOF ceremony. Com’on! Let’s show some gratitude and respect 🙂 x