Breakdancers Rachael Gunn and Jeffery Dunne — known as Raygun and J Attack — have made history after becoming the first Aussies to secure a spot in the breakdancing (officially known as breaking) Australian team that will compete in the Paris 2024 Olympics.
Does anyone remember that scene in High School Musical where one student said they wanted to “pop, lock, dance and break”? This is exactly what these two icons did. They’ve literally popped, locked, danced and broken into the Australian history books last weekend at the Oceania Championships in Sydney.
As per Fox Sports, the dancers secured their tickets to Paris after they won in their individual b-boy and b-girl categories on Saturday.
In a video of his electrifying performance, Dunne, 16, expressed that he was “excited” to have nabbed a spot on the Aussie breaking team for the 2024 Olympics. He also gave a quick shout-out to his coaches and family, who’ve supported him through his journey.
In a shared Instagram post with the official Aussie Olympic Team, viewers can peep the moment Gunn, 36, was awarded her ticket to Paris.
“How it feels to qualify for the Olympics,” the caption reads.
Winding back to 2020, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced that it was bringing in breakdancing for the 2024 games in an attempt to appeal to the younger demographic.
“We had a clear priority to introduce sports [that are] particularly popular among the younger generation and taking into consideration the urbanisation of sport,” IOC President Thomas Bach said.
The sport (art in my eyes) was first trialled at the 2018 Youth Olympics in Buenos Aires.
Although I believe it’s extremely exciting to see breaking be a part of the 2024 Olympics, at the time of its announcement, other athletes were kinda pissed with the decision.
“You just look at the whole thing and you just go ‘where’s the Olympics going?’ I know some people say breakdancing’s a sport but […] I don’t understand,” Aussie squash world champion Michelle Martin told AAP.
Fair enough, as squash — at the time– had yet to be recognised by the IOC. Thankfully for Martin, squash has been added as an Olympic sport for the Los Angeles 2028 Olympics, alongside cricket, baseball, softball, lacrosse and flag footy.
As per Fox Sports, Aussies who are looking to make it on the Aussie breaking team will be able to qualify with more events to take place overseas next year.
Unfortunately, I’m no longer limber enough to break it down, but I will definitely be cheering our team when the time comes.
Image source: Getty Images / Mark Kolbe