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Skateboarding Europe

Nomad Skateboards -Jeff Luque
Interview

Founder’s Interview: Ivan of Nomad Skateboards

The following interview was originally featured in the printed KrakMag issue 15 that shipped with KrakBox in August 2017. Want to get your hands on a copy of the next printed KrakMag? Want to receive epic skateboarding product every two months? Check out the KrakBox now!

I’m not sure everyone knows where Zaragoza is actually, and how big it is too. Could you give us some quick/general background info about your city please?
Zaragoza is the fifth biggest city in Spain, with nearby 800,000 inhabitants and with a strategic location (3 hours from Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia and Bilbao), represents one of the Spanish main capitals. We have a huge ecclesiastic tradition, which means tons of marble spots but unfortunately they are surrounded by cops daily. We have huge heat in summer, and crazy wind in winter!

Are you from there originally? If yes, how was it growing up there? If no, where are you from initially and when and why did you move in Zaragoza?
I come from a small town up in the north of the mountains called Les. 600 people live there and it is the closest place from paradise… It’s just 4km far from France, so basically I grew up half in Spain, and half in the French school, where I started skating with my friends. When I was 18 I just wanted to visit bigger cities and skate, I decided to fly out from my parents house and I met some friends from the skate scene from Zaragoza. At that time the skateboarding scene from Zaragoza was GREAT… f_ck that was 21 years ago!

How do we call people from Zaragoza?
Maños! Greatest Spanish hearts, really nice people.

Nomad Skateboards -Jeff Luque

Jeff Luque, switch heelflip. Photo: Antonio Castillejo

How would you describe the skate scene in Zaragoza?
Early 2000 the scene was boiling, we were sticking all together and we used to travel around other cities, by bus, by train, squatting on ATM´s, under the mini ramp, picnic, wherever… just focused on skating and parties. Unfortunately the town hall from our city decided to kick out the skaters from the spots and skateboarding suddenly became almost “forbidden”. Anyone who has been in our city understands what I mean… Actually the scene is smaller, there is a big gap between my generation and the newcomers, nowadays once kids are able to move they just goes to Barcelona or Madrid, so it does not help to keep the hype in our spots.

We’re talking about Spain after all so my guess is, weather wise, you’re pretty much able to skate all year long is that right?
Yeah, if you compare to other countries we are really lucky weather wise, however in August you want to take your nap till 6pm cause with over 40 degrees it’s not recommended to go out! In our cold and windy winter you can always find a spot to get covered.

That being said, when is the best period of the year to come and experience your city?
From April to July. Perfect weather. The perfect complement will be the best beer in the region. Let me know when you guys land so I can fill half of my fridge with Ambar 😉

First plaza and/or street spot no one should miss when in the city?
The Auditorium. It has perfect marble benches, perfect marble floor, it’s covered and has street lamps for your night sesh. The only issue is that it’s a “russian roulette”. You can spend two days skating non stop or be kicked out in five minutes.

Nomad Skateboards - Vladimir Ivanov

Vladimir Ivanov, b/s nosegrind nollie b/s heel out. Photo: Ivaylo Donchev

I should have started with this maybe but who are you, Ivan?
I am the orchestra man on the back of Nomad!

When did you start skateboarding and how? Do you have any early-days type of anecdote?
Around ‘92 there was a skate boom in my hometown. My best friends bought their first skateboards and I was always sneaking on their tricks to catch their boards and cruise or try something. I have 5 brothers so after pressing my parents they could just afford to buy a “Holy Sport” skateboard I made it to mix some other parts with friends and I ended having something proper! Just a few VHS videos were within the community and we were meeting after the school to see the videos and then go out and skate. That was hella fun…

Now that you manage a brand, do you still take time to skate as much as you’d like?
With 39 years unfortunately not. I run also my skate shop and work on a real estate company from UK, but I keep playin’ flat and cruising with my 7 years old kid as much as I can, he’s my motivation and my best ever session mate.

Nomad Skateboards - Miguel Sanchez

Miguel Sanchez, switch f/s flip. Photo: Ian Paulo Rodriguez

You launched Nomad in 2001!!! Wow, I have to say it man: I’m really impressed, big up! We were happy to celebrate our 2 years a little while ago but still, 16 years, that’s another level haha! Much respect.
There was a long road! Good periods and also really bad moments, but I have learned so much from everyone. “Stars can’t shine without darkness.”

How was it in Spain skateboarding wise back then? Everyone only bought the US brands, I guess? Cliché was already around in France for sure, but I don’t know about Spain actually…
Yup, we were buying all US brands, which were landing after several distributors at unaffordable prices. Cliché was there pretty quick, for sure my reference number one, MUCH RESPECT to them. Still cannot believe what happened…

And how was it to be the first brand in Spain? Did you benefit from much love and support from the community? Were people were stoked to have a local brand or not really, in fact?
I must say that we had total support from the community and skate shops. We grew up really quick within the first years, I would say even too quick for a young kid as I was!

Nomad Skateboards - Cristian Delgado

Cristian Delgado, b/s tailslide flip to fakie. Photo: Ian Paulo Rodriguez

Tell us some early anecdotes around Nomad, we love these kinda stories.
I started buying a few tees and 50 decks in the states. I was going out with my VW van selling the boards from the back of my van to the skate shops, and with the cash we were replacing orders. That was funky business! Our first tour was supposed to be the North of Spain with that van. We were my 40kg dog, 5 guys and my ex wife. In the middle of the journey we ran out of money already and the tour was over! But those days were unforgettable: great sessions, flamenco music at night and tons of laughs 24/7…

Where does the name come from?
From all the nomad souls we all have inside, the necessity to move and travel around seeking for new spots.

Who’s on the team?
Actually newcomers/killers from Europe, a few from our OG´s, and the best of all: good friends. OG Jeff Luque (SP), OG Shinichi Yamada (JP), OG Sasha Tushev (RU), Miguel Sánchez (SP), Cristian Delgado (SP), Niki Diaz (SP), Vladimir Ivanov (BG).

Nomad Team in Tenerife

Nomad Team in Tenerife

What do you think about the current Spanish scene, both on the brands/business angle and on the riders/skaters one?
In terms of skateboarding, Spain is blowing up. The level is growing exponentially and soon it will be reflected internationally. Business wise, the industry is suffering a lot, but that’s also a reflection of our economy. We’re still struggling after the financial crisis which destroyed, literally, the country. We were almost out of business in 2012, but we had distribution internationally and thanks to this, my friends at MDCN who hook me up, and four jobs at once that I was running, I was able to get back on board. Nowadays we keep pushing and we are living a great #rebirth. I feel really lucky and proud of my fam who always trusted on me.

About the European scene?
Well I would say the same… on both.

Typically are you happy to see more and more European brands popping up pretty much everywhere across the continent?
Yes! It helps to keep the scene alive, but I believe that there should be some “rules” that should be respected, concurrence is good, always. That is healthy…

Do you have a favorite top 3?
Cliché 4ever, Isle and Sour.

Nomad Skateboards - Jeff Luque

Jeff Luque, nollie b/s heel. Photo: Victor Calvo

We mainly see videos from Barcelona; is it hard for the other cities in Spain to exist next to such a big hub? Or is it an opportunity, in fact?
Honestly, I prefer that other cities stay off the radar… if you ever come to Spain, visit Madrid, Málaga or Valencia, and be welcome to heaven.

At what time did you start to expand outside Spain? Europe first I guess, but how did you choose the countries?
Our first export was France, that was 2003 or something like that… BIG UP TO THE GUYS AT BUD Skateshop; they were running a core distribution company and we started selling there. After some trips to ISPO Munich and meeting some friends, the rest came organically.

What was the process for a brand like yours when you decided to expand?
QUALITY / PASSION / SERVICE / FRIENDSHIP, then let it flow.

Nomad Skateboards- Cristian Delgado

Cristian Delgado, 360 Flip. Photo: Sergio Del Rey

We were freaking proud to be the first one to introduce your decks in the US and Canada; you will then launch Nomad in May, is that right?
Yeah! We have been so hyped to land under your wings. We love the Krak concept and it always helps to work and support a skate operated business.
In May we will have a distribution platform with my good friend Justin from Generator Distribution, which will deliver to USA and South America. And in Canada soon under Control MFG wings also. Sean from control saw the potential of Nomad and we will be crossing North America soon!

Why have you waited 16 years before expanding in North America?
We were trying to cover Europe and Russia, and honestly USA was too big for us. After we made it out of the crisis, let’s say we broke lot’s of mental barriers we had and now we want to share #thenomadfamily vibes worldwide and we found great friends to share that path so, what else!?

From another angle: was it really necessary to expand there? Did you hesitate, honestly? Could you share the rationale behind this move?
We have a great connection with South America, we have got distribution in Chile, Peru, Venezuela, but export taxes and shipping were always a break to keep growing. Our friends at Generator gave us the solution, and as I said, the rest just flowed.

Beyond Europe & now North America, is Nomad available somewhere else in the world?
We have been distributed in Japan for more than a decade. Hideo Sakuragi, who was one of the first Japanese sponsored skaters in USA after making the American skate dream, went back home and settled his own distribution company. He has been pro on Nomad for 5 years, and he kept supporting us since day one. Russia also since 2007, and in 2008 we did our first tour which was so fun in St Pete and Moscow. China for 3 years already. My friends Luke and David run a great company there and are doing amazing things to grow the scene there.

Nomad Skateboards - Vladimir Ivanov

Vladimir Ivanov, kickflip. Photo: Ivaylo Donchev

What are the plans for the near future?
Have fun and learn daily.

And the next 16 years, tell us…
See my kid having fun skating and keep Nomad alive!

You can’t imagine how happy and proud we are to partner with such brands like Nomad that literally contributed and wrote our skateboarding story here in Europe. Long live Nomad 😉
THANKS Krakbox for keeping the good vibes within that marvellous world, and THANKS for being the first ones trusting in our dreams! NOMAD X KRAK CONSPIRACY!

Nomad Skateboards - Miguel Sanchez

Miguel Sanchez, tail drop. Photo: Antonio Castillejo

Cover image: Jeff Luque, crooked. Photo: Astur

Spot

Barcelona: its historical street scene

The Krak team is exploring the world (whaat? yep we’re working hard to build some cool stuff for all of us!).

Our very first 2015 stop: BARCELONA!

The best street scene worldwide? Sounds like it! It’s only been couple of days and we’re like kids tracking their old idols, jumping around when we coincidentally encounter a legendary spot. It’s so inspiring to be here. So many peeps skateboarding everywhere, rails, gaps, ledges every 10 meters, WOW! We’re already on dozens of ideas to make you smile, stay tuned amigos!

And as usual we’re dying to hear your thoughts! What’s your fav skate spot here?

bestskatespotsbarcelona

Interview, Kraken, Kraker

Pintodd crew

You may have noticed them in the app: The Pintodd crew is one of the most famous crew and keeps exciting us with their vids and pics. Based in Lyon (France) often rippin’ HDV (understand here« Hotel de Ville » iconic spot) they are hungry enough to krak the world.

“Yo les chicken dips! Can you explain the name of your crew.

Felix : so we were just some friends hangin out together some times to hit the streets. During one of these sesh, we just tripped on the word “pintade” that means “guinea fowl” in french. The following evening, I proposed them to create a team, a crew, and we choose the name “Pintodd” cause it sounds like “pintade”, but is a bit different. The double ‘d’ at the end is much better, it sounds better. So in fact, we are the ‘GuineaFowl Crew‘ haha!

“Who are you, where did you met?

Enzo : first, we are French, we are ‘lyonnais’ (from Lyon). We’re skateboarders who just skate and laugh out loud. We all met in HdV (hotel de ville) and progressively we’ve been skating together.

“Do you have a motto? Something core to Pintodd crew?

‘Fuck da police!’ haha

Who’s the most funny in the crew?

Tibo: I guess the most funny is Harry, cause he’s always doing shit, talking shit. 

IMG_2125
(translation “My new GoPro”)

– The most talented?

David: ME
Harry: No it’s me!
Aurelien: Shut up guyz, you all know I am the best! Haha
Enzo: There is no real comparison between us, and that’s true: we all know the best is Aurelien. He progresses so fast that’s incredible.

– The most fucked-up?

Felix: Harry

-The chicks addict?

Haha make your own idea

tibo enzo

“Any favorite spot in Lyon (after HDV of course)?

David: We often skate in X-Rousse or in Confluence.

“Any annecdote about a skate sesh?

Aurelien: We have always funny bails but we remember this sesh in a lil park in Lyon (Blandan): skate friends and sun was the perfect combo, we don’t need anything else!

IMG_1596

(translation: “Max doesn’t like cheap lemonade”)

“Do you have sponsors?

Tibo: except Aurélien, none of us have sponsors, but some are doing the best to search one. Video coming soon 😉

“Where can we find ya?

KRAK OF COURSE and also in HdV ! Enjoy your day, go hit the streets and FUCK DA POLICE!

IMG_2128

THANKS PEEPS! 

>> Pintoodd crew >>
Aurelien Giraud, Enzo Di Litta, David Vernay, Harry Bertrand, Max Colombel, Tibo Rebie, Félix Baillet.
Interview, Kraken

Inspiration: Manuel Rampl

Today you will discover this bro!! Manu joined the KRAK Gang early December and he’s ripping it so far!! KRAKED #3, KRAKED #4, KRAKED #6 and KRAKED #9 he is everywhere, gifted you can say.

What’s up Manu? Can you introduce yourself please.
My Name Is Manuel, 20 years old. Skateboarder and Photographer from Austria.

When did you start skateboarding?
I started in 2009.

Who is the person who influence you the most?
My parents and my girlfriend haha (;

How did you originally found KRAK?
One day in class i took a look on product Hunt and there was the App! 😀

Are you part of a crew? Who are your homies?
Not really! Just me and my Friends! We Are going to drop a full lenght video callled “brettljausn” (some footage here). Pics: Alex & Philipp.

IMG_3790_edited IMG_8356
Any favorite spot?
Secret Spot – Hargaland (DIY Park made by me and my Friends, top Secret Haha).

favorite skater? Chris Joslin

video part? Chris Joslin – Plan B True (itunes full edit or free extract here)

Anecdote about a worst session ever?
5 craked boards for One Trick! Hahaha

DAMN! Anything you wanna add?
Thanks To the KRAK guys for the Support! I am fucking proud!Manuel Rampl KRAK

Kraked

#2 – KRAKED!

What happened last week on KRAK?

Every week we highlight the most inspiring content (both videos and pics) that we had the chance to notice in the app. This week we have 2 skaters who made it in both categories (congrats Allan & Robin) + we see some dudes who already were in the #1 last monday, congrats to them too cause they get used to amazing content which makes us all super happy! Keep on pushin’

Check the videos:

Allan Arma at Diar; man, your grind on this circular handrail is one thing but your fall is pretty sick (and quite spectacular for some neighbor girls we have at the office who are not used to that sort of footage)
Robin Fournier at Saint-Andre; who proves us that we could really enjoy a little rail w/ a great mix of fs boardslide (1st: big spin 2nd: flip 3rd: nollie)
Joseph Garbaccio at Rouen Skatepark; I don’t even need to write anything, just the name of the trick: 540 stallfish!

And the best staff pics are:

KRAKED2

Wanna see more? Find them on KRAK!
Interview, Kraken

Virgile (Paris, France)

Let me introduce you this guy, he’s our Krak homies in Paris.

What’s up Virgile?

Everything great thanks! Just back from a sesh in the north of paris at EGP, of course you can check it on the Krak app.

EGP north paris

Can you introduce yourself please.

I’m Virgile, I’m 24 years old, I’m from Lyon, France. I now live in Paris but I had the chance to live and skate in Montreal and Buenos Aires, which was awesome! On my spare time I write on Vida Skate a blog about local skate scenes and skate news in general. To finish, of course, I’m a Krak addict ;).

What do you do for a living?

I work at M6, one of the big local TV channel, I am in charge of a new Youtube channels launch. Our latest project is an acoustic cover channel called Cover Garden, here is the link if you want to check it out.

Why did you decide to join The Krak Homies?

When the Krak team first contacted me about a year ago, I thought the project was really cool and offered to get involved. So, when they offered me to be part of the Krak Homies I was really stoked and didn’t over think it, I said yes.

Your availability to hang out and skate?

Since I am working, I skate mostly at night and on the week ends of course. I’d definitely be happy to meet homies to skate and hang out.

Any favorite spot?

In Lyon, I’ve spent countless hours at Hotel de Ville, the spot is legendary where I had the chance to watch Cliché pros filming parts. In Paris, my favorite spot is Fougères skatepark at the East of Paris, cool locals and great curves, definitely recommend it (the spot is on the Krak app). In Buenos Aires, I really love the Converse skate plaza, it’s hard to get there but once you are there it’s like California in South America.

Hotel de Ville – Lyon
Hotel de ville

Converse skate plaza – Buenos Aires
Converse skate plaza

Fougères – Paris
Fougères Paris

Favorite skater?

Not very original but I am a huge fan of Eric Koston! The guy is a living legend.

Video part?

The Guy Mariano part in Pretty Sweet!

Anecdote about your worst session ever?

In Buenos Aires I remember going for an 1h30 bus drive to go to a skatepark and break my board on the second trick no skateshop around…That really sucked.

Foodporn: Baguette Cheese Saucisson or Burger?

Baguette, Cheese and Saucisson of course!

Tony Hawk Pro Skater or SKATE ?

Skate is cool but all the good memories go which Tony Hawk Pro Skater of course.

Thanks Bro!

virgile

Picture ©Helene Giansily
Left to Right: Antoine Bunel, Ishod Wair, Pierre Leroy & Virgile De Vile

Wanna see more? Find them on KRAK!
Kraked

#1- KRAKED!

What happened last week on KRAK?

You must have seen in your feed some rad videos this week! We’ve really surprised by the level of those guys and recommend you to check them out :

Camborob at Palm Springs
Esteban Vialle at Poissy
JJP at Villiers sur Orges Skatepark
Kevin Ozcan at Villiers sur Orges Skatepark

Both JJP and Kevin Ozcan were at the Far n High contest: official video recap.

And the best staff pics are…

Kraked1Wanna see more? Find them on KRAK!