We all know KebbeK by its fun loving, adventure seeking, hill bombing spirit, but what goes down in the background includes a world of head scratching and creative thinking that provides the masses with a means to pursue their passion.
KebbeK Skateboards strives for perfection in every little detail, whether it’s the board features, graphic designs, apparel or their international team of riders pursuing podiums or that one new trick one just has to land.
Their latest video features both worlds, indoor and outdoor, that results in the perfect lifestyle we all seek. Joey Binder, KebbeK’s brand manager we all know and love from KnK Longboard Camp, spends his usual workdays in their new store and headquarters in Montreal which they launched earlier this year.
The video evolves into shots of their team rider Jordan Wells taking his brand new Tabarnak deck paired with KebbeK’s Tepakan wheels for a spin. After a few trials and errors, his efforts definitely paid off.
A few shots later Jordan switches his board for the 2018 Dig Deep with a pool/bowl inspired shape and a beaver graphic. This skateboard has a squared off nose, great for all kinds of different grabs and a nice pocket on the tail for stable foot placement while doing sick wall rides and grinds as Jordan does in the video.
Video by Fool Media
Rider: Jordan Wells
Sound Engineering: Lora Bidner
Close to 200 riders have descended upon the forested hills on the border of Slovenia and Croatia for the 10th edition of KnK Longboard Camp presented by KebbeK Skateboards.
Maxwell Kaye is staying with us and did a run-through of the day on the Vlog, check it out. Vlog #2 is in the works focusing on the upcoming Red Bull No Paws Down World Championships. Last years winner Dominic Schenk is retiring after winning the 2017 No Paws Down title, paving the way for another rider to be crowned World Champion.
Despite a damp early Monday morning, spirits remained ecstatic as the weather soon turned from cloud to sunshine. The second day started with morning pack runs with about 10 riders per run, only because the Bear’s Guts is wide enough for groups of riders to slide alongside one another safely.
The uplift shuttles are speedy and riders are getting in around 9 runs per day, exceeding the 8 runs daily minimum. With 18 corners and a 4 km track, that means lots of worn out legs and a great appetite for the watermelon at the end of the track.
Some skaters who are like family and come to KnK every year feel that it’s tradition to jump into the river Cabranka that marks the border of Slovenia and Croatia to keep the blood flowing for the leg burner that is the Bear’s Guts. After a day of hard skating people immediately go to the campsite, grab their swimming trunks and jump off the rope swing.
Joey Bidner and Maxwell Kaye are the taking care of the evening entertainment with daily videos and fun games like the KebbeK Skateboards Go Tuck Yourself contest, where skaters in heats of 4 challenge their mind and body to stay on a balance board until two of them fail to advance into the next round.
The first few heats were around 2 minutes long, but as soon as the semi-finals and finals came, the competition ran high. The lactic acid was building up, leaving the riders with weak legs and sweat glazed foreheads.
Lilian Barou, Alternative Longboards team rider, won the Go Tuck Yourself contest with a laser engraved special 10th edition KnK Longboard Camp graphic courtesy of KebbeK Skateboards. Andrea Moreni and Deen Mondt won the style and aero points showcasing the best tuck form on the stage.
As we move towards the second half of this week we look forward to bringing you coverage of the Red Bull No Paws Down World Championship and the KebbeK Skateboards Wheel of Misfortune. Stay Tuned!
At a quick glance the biggest change you’ll notice is the artistic expression by Niva Helen Artworks, who grabbed her watercolors and paint brushes to create the stunning new graphics and give the line-up a complete makeover.
KebbeK said good bye to their 25th year anniversary opalescent paint, but stayed connected with their spirit animals, portraying different animals on each board model.
The Kaslo – Improve your dancing moves
If you watched our ISPO 2018 Longboard Embassy report video, you may already know that KebbeK expanded their dancing line by taking their Kaslo model to the next level. The Kaslo longboard dancing deck is now available in three models, all featuring a new construction of fibreglass and bamboo.
The Kaslo 40 is a more compact freestyle dancer with a slightly stiffer flex. The bigger Kaslo 43 model features some channel grooves for that extra finger grip control, perfect for freestyle tricks and it also helps shave off some weight of its 2-ply fibreglass, bamboo and a thinner core construction.
But for fans of larger kicktails, a mellow concave and a bigger platform for more spacious dancing manuevers, the third longboard dancing model known as the Kaslo 46 is the way to go. Last year this deck was available in their opalescent series which they will be still pushing this year.
The Smoothcut 37 – Beginners are always welcomed
This year KebbeK also didn’t forget about beginners in search for a stable and confidence boosting ride. Included in the new line-up is the Smoothcut 37 created specifically for beginners.
You’ll notice it still has a new trout graphic design and that it’s the only drop-through deck in the line-up. This deck is well thought out to provide a lower centre of gravity, which makes it more stable and easier to learn how to longboard.
The Emily Pross Pro Model decks – From mountain to city life
KebbeK Skateboards has been teasing us with glimpses of the Emily Pross pro model decks since the beginning of the year. The news was she was not only getting a pro model, but actually two of them, one for racing and one for cruising through the city, and the specs are finally out.…
KebbeK worked closely with Emily on designing her Mountain pro model deck. If you know who Emily is, then you know she stared this year’s IDF racing season with a bang, taking first place in the Philippines at Seaside 2018 and becoming the first woman to win an Open category at an IDF race.
The Mountain deck is 34.5’’ long, 9.5’’ wide and it’s all about the foot lock and a comfortable ride. With a 1/2 inch radial drop, multiple wheelbase optionsranging form 22 to 25 inches and flush mounts, this deck gives you a chance to mount your tucks directly under the front foot as Emily does for better leverage and control.
With a touch of flex, the deck construction consists of 7 plys of maple and 2 plys of a particular weighted fiberglass for a harmonised mix of rigidity and dampening.
But to make it even more fun, Emily also wanted to pay homage to the roots with a swallow tail which adds that extra something something to the whole design.
The Emily Pross City deck is an absolute city cruiser which you can also take for a ride in your local bowls. It’s made in KebbeK’s Canadian factory from, yes you guessed it, Canadian Maple.
If you’re keen to check out the rest of the 2018 KebbeK Skateboards line-up, head over to their www.kebbek.com.
KebbeK Skateboards launched their new headquarters and store in Montreal, Québec. The grand opening was last Friday, on February 16th, 2018, and at the same time, it was also the release party for Skate[Slate] Magazine Issue 36 which features KebbeK’s team rider Ben Dub on the cover with a photo made by a photographer John Rathwell.
KebbeK’s store stands out with a modern and simplistic design, something that we’re not used to seeing with other brands from the niche. The decks are put on a display inside of the transparent boxes, probably made of glass, lit up with led lights and treated like a piece of art that they are.
Our home is your home. Walk into the new Kebbek headquarters/gallery/boutique and be apart of the conversation. We would love to hear from you, share a high five, and most importantly….go skate. ~ KebbeK Skateboards via Facebook
If you’re visiting Montreal, make sure you make a stop at 4257 Rue St-Denis and check out the KebbeK decks, latest apparel and grab a free copy of the Skate[Slate] magazine.
If you’re not familiar with ISPO, here’s the short walk-through. It is the biggest European multi-segment trade fair within the sports industry. With over 85.000 visitors from 120 different countries, ISPO is stretched out through 16 halls showcasing 8 segments that cover everything from winter sports, team sports, health & fitness to manufacturing & suppliers.
We mostly spent our time in Hall A5 at the Longboard Embassy organized by 40inch Longboard Magazine. Looking back to 2013, when I last visited ISPO, this year’s Longboard Embassy looked a bit smaller than back then, but it was still filled with a wall-to-wall skateboard and longboard products.
Walking through the Longboard Embassy, one could try out surf skating, electric longboards, watched Legende Longboard chisel a block of wood, what later became a handcrafted and fully functional longboard, or rest their legs at the lounge area overlooking the Whitezu 12 meter long surf skate wave system.
In the four days of ISPO, we got a chance to talk with and interview 33 brands covering different skateboarding disciplines.
Wheel and truck wise, we got a chance to check out Seismic’s new downhill race wheel, the European Walzen wheels, and the new Bolzen truck models and also talked with Bangfish about their new surf skate trucks.
Regarding protection, we saw the Triple 8 Certified Sweatsaver, stopped by at TSG and saw what’s new with Pro-Tec’s Full Cut skateboard helmets.
We also saw the Buggy Rollin suit by Jean Yves Blondeau. He’s most known for one of his stunt characters, the Rollerman, which we also got to see in action.
While we are still editing the interviews to show you what the brands had to say about their new lineups and products, here is a photo gallery from the ISPO 2018 Longboard Embassy.
I would like to end this article with an interview with Philippe Roose, a member of the Ministry of Stoke and their F*** Cancer Foundation. In the video, he said that the beer fundraiser at ISPO was a success and shares his personal story with everybody who takes the time to watch the video below.
Yes you heard it right, the faster female downhill skateboarder Emily Pross from New Jersey joined the KebbeK Skateboards family.
Before we left off to visit ISPO, the biggest sports trade fair located in Munich, KebbeK Skateboards released a teaser photo of their new pro team member which got people guessing who it is.
It was a few days later that KebbeK welcomed Emily Pross to their pro team. Emily is, like all their other team members, something special. In the past years she has set the bar for other downhill skateboarders across the globe with a friendly but competitive spirit and reaping the rewards of her hard work.
She is not only a three time IDF Women’s World Champion but has also actively competed in the male dominated Open class. She won 3rd place in Open at the Laguna DH race in Mexico (with a broken toe), proving that determination and skill is all that matters. Last year’s racing season she finished 9th overall in the Open class.
Kebbek supports the core skate scene and really does a great job at promoting all kinds of skateboarding. The team is a family, supporting, and encouraging each other. It was an easy decision, to say yes to that kind of atmosphere. ~ Emily Pross
As for her new chapter with KebbeK Skateboards, Emily will soon be riding on her two new pro model boards (more news coming soon).
We wish Emily and KebbeK all the best in this year’s and future racing seasons.
Time flies and things change but for now, KnK Longboard Camp remains. It’s a great pleasure to look back to 2009 and see what an iconic event it became over those 9 years and how much impact it made on downhill skateboarders across the globe.
This would have never been possible without the love for downhill skateboarding we all carry in our hearts and without the dedication of everyone who has ever helped us with the organisation. So thank you all for the constant support and for shredding the Bear’s Guts with us.
We’re looking forward to seeing you all very soon at KnK Longboard Camp 2018 powered by KebbeK Skateboards!
The Bear’s Guts is covered in snow right now but soon enough, summer will return to Osilnica and so will we, the riders.
The first week of KnK Longboard Camp will take place from July 23rd to July 28th, 2018 and the second week from July 31st to August 5th, 2018.
The Red Bull No Paws Down race will be held on July 28th, that’s during the first week while Single Set Survivors is currently looking for a new sponsor and it’s scheduled for August 4th, 2018.
The price remains the same; 220 € for a full 6-day freeride including camping with all the amenities. Everything you need for a pleasant stay in Osilnica is already laid out for you; a river for swimming with a rope swing, a restaurant, store, cash machine, post office…We got you covered as usual.
The 2017 KebbeK Skateboards board collection consists of 10 board models, hand painted in-house with a custom, limited edition formula of opalescent paint. As a result, the boards provide a colourful visual show, transforming right in front of your eyes.
Besides the great look and feel, the paint job also provides scratch resistance making the mentioned eye candy last longer.
Here is a workflow preview of the KebbeK crew preparing every single longboard in Montreal, Canada.
And because the history behind KebbeK involves a tight knit crew of friends and skaters, they continue to support team riders as well as communities around the globe, with humanitarian projects like “Cuban Links” being a staple in their recent work.
Since their beginning, KebbeK riders merge their personalities and different perspectives and create a unique vibe and atmosphere as the boards they skate on. And because a brand is nothing without their team, we decided to introduce the pro model decks of Benjamin Dubreuil, Emanuele Daigle, Raphael Therrien, Juergen Gritzner and Isac Printz.
In 2016 KebbeK introduced three redesigned board collections, including pro model decks of their team riders. It was no surprise that Ben’s model was amongst them. This year his board is still a part of the collection unchanged but flashing a new opalescent look.
Ben Dub has been with KebbeK since 2008 and he’s described as a man of mystery. When he’s not enjoying living off the grid with his dog, he’s up for fast lines, cutting alleys and hopping over obstacles, and his pro model is made for just that.
Living free of boundaries and skating everything you come across in your daily life was the inspiration behind his pro model.
This directional downhill/freeride deck includes a fat tail and a varying wheelbase of 23.8″ to 27″, with a total length of 38″ and a width of 9.75″.
With a 0.5 inch rocker, a micro drop, flushmounts and a 9ply construction of, what else than Canadian maple, the board provides a simple but effective shape, perfect for exploring the wilderness.
Ben already put his board to the test and like every year, he found some other fun uses for it besides skateboarding.
As the newest pro team rider at KebbeK, Raphael a.k.a. Crafty from Montreal, got his own deck model this year. Formerly known as the Top Mount 36 introduced back in 2001, the board changed it’s name and look for this year’s season.
His deck is 36″ long and 9.5″ wide and has multiple wheelbase options ranging from 24″ to 25.75″. The wide platform and the concave offer freedom of foot placement making it playful for everyday skating and experimenting with your stance.
The boards also received an overhaul last year, that is why the Raphael Therrien pro model now features a rocker, 0.5 micro drop, flushmounts, deep wheel wells and a nifty kick tail which you can pop over anything.
Emma’s pro model deck stands for the same things she does. As an avid traveller with a great connection with nature, Emma is known for her nomad lifestyle. This is also the reason her downhill deck is designed to tackle any condition and is small and light enough to fit a traveling lifestyle.
With a 33.5″ length and 9.5″ width, the small, jet comfortable 24 to 25.5″ wheelbase includes a 0.25 inch radial drop to keep your feet comfortably locked in.
It’s 7 ply maple construction is 2 less than other pro models, but a top and bottom Fibreglass enforcement ensures its light weight and robust exterior.
One of the stars of the “Lost in Havana” documentary, the austrian skater Juergen Gritzner together with KebbeK Skateboards donated 100 of his pro model completes to kids in need, helping them start their own longboard journey.
With s similar mindset as Jurgen, his pro model deck is all about freedom of skating, foot position and mixing together different skate styles. Sharing the same dimensions with the Ben Dub pro model deck, Juergen’s stands on its own with a directional shape, a 0.5 rocker, a micro drop and flushmounts.
For more about Juergen and his pro model, check out the feature here.
And last but not least is Isac Printz. As the second newest pro rider at KebbeK Skateboards, his pro model was known as Rockin Rookie back in the day, which was released in 2008.
His deck of choice, the mentioned 38″ long and 9.8″ wide topmount longboard suits his riding style as he enjoys visiting race events and the adrenaline rush at higher speeds.
His pro model was inspired by slalom skaters and the popularity of topmount decks back in the day and with a wheelbase anywhere between 27 to 30″, this speed board is perfect for charging down epic mountain passes and fast maneuvering in tight race heats.
With their latest project, three of KebbeK team riders, Emma, Juergen and Isac, with flow rider Benjamin Sabol released their Better Weather Tour video. Filmed last year in between skate events, the team went rouge and explored the surrounding mountains in search of new experiences.
To find out more about the remaining deck models in the 2017 Limited Edition Opalescent Series, visit the KebbeK Skateboards.
With the nomadic lifestyle becoming more and more popular and because we, as skateboarders, are used to travelling the globe in search of different skate locations, I caught up with Emma Daigle to talk about her travelling experiences and to know more about how she sustains her active lifestyle.
Emma Daigle is a 20-something skateboarder, traveller, yoga instructor and artist. She’s known for her nomadic lifestyle, hitting the road every chance she gets in search of new experiences and enriching her life with travelling.
She just got back from a month long trip in California, skating the famous Tuna, a local go-to skate spot. But as soon as she got back, she already started planning her next trip to the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina.
Last year I’ve met Emma briefly at KebbeK KnK Longboard Camp, her last stop on her mini euro tour. She travelled through Sweden and Austria beforehand, visiting freeride events and enjoying some random skate trips to the mountains.
I hit Lillehammer, Almabtrieb and KnK. I enjoyed going to less events and skateboarding more. It was the best of both worlds. Link up with people at events, catch up and then run off into the mountains and skate from dawn to dusk. Non-stop.
In between events she also went rogue with an improvised Kebbek Skateboards team trip in Austria, driving around and skating epic mountain passes.
Isac Printz, Jurgen Gritzner, Benjamin Sabol and herself included explored the nearby Alps and filmed some skate shots for their soon to be released Better Weather Tour video. Don’t worry, we’ll feature it as soon as it comes out to keep you in the loop.
A sustainable travelling lifestyle
When Emma is not skateboarding, she likes to switch it up with other outdoor activities like rock climbing, mountain biking and hiking.
And because of her active lifestyle and her yoga skills, she’s able to sustain her trips by teaching yoga and doing odd jobs along the way. This includes anything from cleaning houses and construction work to random art contracts.
In our conversation, Emma revealed, she doesn’t look up jobs online but rather follows the ‘word on the street’ and even get’s multiple job requests via social media.
So far she didn’t feel the need to find any season jobs in Europe because she lives simply and travels on a budget. But I got curious and looked up season jobs online.
I found that there are many jobs available if you’re planning a longer trip through Europe. You can do anything from babysitting to teaching English, to picking oranges in Spain…but that’s a totally different article.
Connecting with new people
Being an open-minded person means Emma is always open to work on different projects that make her see things from a different perspective. She met Oreon Strusinski, an ocean photographer and the author of the pictures you see in this article.
I wanted to shoot with him to see what type of angles and ideas he would come up with given that shooting skateboarding on ‘land’ is not his main focus. It’s always interesting to have someone from another discipline come in and bring a new outlook to the sport.
Emma did the shoot on her current setup which is her pro model from KebbeK Skateboards, Paris Trucks 165s and Blood Orange wheels. Here’s what she has to say about it:
The board might look small but it’s nimble and surprisingly stable at higher speeds. It’s got a subtle micro drops which suction cup your feet to the board.
Its smaller size makes it perfect for the avid traveller.
For now, Emma is travelling through the US and simultaneously planning her next trip to Japan and China. Her focusing is on possibly making Asia her Fall / Winter reality, partially skate related and partially out of curiosity.
Hopefully, we’ll also get to see her somewhere in Europe if the wind blows hard enough 🙂
Here’s how the second day rolled out on the Island…
The track is a black serpent working its way down a terraced mountain side, irrigation ditches cutting it up and cacti lining the sides. The surface is volcanic island tarmac, it slices through layers of wheels like nothing else.
Alex Dehmel live streamed a run with Islander Marcos Costa and lead organiser Felix Rupistch, check it out here…
In between runs, the riders spend the most time together while waiting for the buses at the bottom. However, this provides a rare opportunity for them to catch up and enjoy being a part of a tight knit international community. The events we go to and the runs we share as riders can create the closest of friendships and it is good to catch up whenever possible, even if it’s just at longboard events.
Wheels are being worn down at an exceedingly quick rate with riders having to rely on KebbeK Skateboards core a set, get a set offer.
Pete Connolly has worn down a set of Cult Raptures per day and seems to be running out quickly. For him the event is simple…
“Just freeride and enjoy the vibe”.
Will Edgecombe is there as well, taking photos for Skate[Slate]…
“I am glad to poach some runs on the beautiful track and skate alongside old friends”.
Overall having 5 days of riding gives riders the time to skate different. Juergen Gritzer has been spotted carving down the track on a KebbeK Shortcut while Pete Connolly has been seen throwing a super rare stand up slide.
This year KebbeK Skateboards celebrates its 25th anniversary with becoming the head sponsor of Arico – El Bueno, a five-day freeride on Tenerife, organised by BigMountainSkate and Sliders Skate House.
Selected by local skaters Martin Diaz Yarza and Álvaro García Cuenllas and tested by the BigMountainSkate crew themselves, the track guarantees fun pack runs with a breath-taking view of the North Atlantic Ocean.
If your life plan includes shredding “the downhill skateboarding paradise”, this might be great opportunity to experience the real thing on a road closed for traffic and reserved only for skaters.
Better Weather Tour video premiere at Arico – El Bueno
After last year’s rainy Almabtrieb, Emmanuelle Daigle, Juergen Gritzner, Isac Printz, Matt Kienzle and Benjamin Sabol, set off on an adventure to search for the finest hills that the Austrian alps have to offer.
They were blessed with great finds and finally, some sunny weather, which resulted in the “Better Weather Tour” video, which is scheduled to be premiered at Arico – El Bueno.
“Core A Set Get A Set” challenge by KebbeK
KebbeK continues to challenge the riders to destroy a set of their wheels in order to get a new set for free. At last year’s KnK no one really managed to core a set, however, the Arico – El Bueno track makes pretty much all wheels dump thane, so the odds are in the riders favour this time.
Adding a 78a wheels offered by a discounted price to the formula, the challenge looks even easier to beat. The price for a set will be 30 Euros and the riders will be able to choose the 80a option as well.
Good luck and see you on the island 🙂
Sponsored Content Disclosure
Longboard Magazine is an official media partner of BigMountainSkate.
Juergen “Ill Eagle” Gritzner‘s pro model longboard deck by KebbeK Skateboards has finally got it’s own promo video. We are stoked to finally see Juergen back on screen since he went under the radar after the “Lost in Havana” premiere at KnK last summer.
KebbeK Skateboards completely redid their lineup and presented the new longboard decks at ISPO 2016 in Munich. We were stoked to see Juergen’s pro model in the stack, representing the Austria’s finest.
Watch the video and read the rest of the post to learn more about JuergenGritzner Topmount 38 longboard deck and its features.
The Juergen Gritzner Topmount 38 longboard deck features
The Juergen Gritzner Topmount 38 is a versatile directional top mount longboard deck which features a fully functional kick-tail, flushed mount and 9 ply maple construction.
The board is 38 inches long, 9.75 inches wide and it provides multiple wheelbase options, ranging from 23.8 up to 27 inches. It features a micro drop and a 0.5 rocker concave for perfect freedom over your foot placement, while providing a good locked in feeling.
Kebbek Skateboards has a huge history in downhill skateboarding, but not many remember their roots in street and transition skating. The Dig Deep transition deck is an homage to their history of street skating from a time when they were called PM skateboards.
This board has a few very special features intended for transition skating, but they are so subtle, that they don’t take away from the general functionality of the board.
Check out the subtle tail taper. This gives you a gas pedal, (as you can see in this photo digdeeptailtaper.jpeg) which gives you board feel and leverage when scooping airs and snapping no-complys.
The nose has a flat taper so it fits in your hand making it natural to locate in the air or pulling Crails while staying functional for flip tricks.
Dig Deep skateboard deck is 32 inches long, 8.4 inches wide and has a 14.5 inch wheelbase.
You can test the Dig Deep board out on the mini-ramp at KnK Longboard Camp this year if you are attending. Kebbek is the title sponsor, so it will be your chance to try any of their boards out! Browse through their new line up at www.kebbek.com
It’s 2008 and I just picked up skating for the third time in my life; I’m visiting New York for work but all my free time is spent pushing around Manhattan and learning how to slide from some amazing folks over in Brooklyn, I ask for a recommendation for a downhill board and I’m told to get a Kebbek.
But that’s not where this story starts, it’s just where I come into contact with one of the most focused board companies out there.
Rewind to 1992 and a young Ian Comishin returned to Canada after studying in Japan for a year, he decided to make skating a core part of his output to the world and started raising money by selling T-shirts under the name Powder Milk, which was the name of a store his friends ran in Japan.
After a short while he turned this into a full on Skateboard operation, now dubbed PM Skateboards.
Having grown up in the mountains of Kimberley BC, Population 8000~, where skateparks were a rarity, it wasn’t odd to find himself and a crew out on the hills or skating stairs sets, ledges or whatever they could find, at a time when Skateboarding was even more criminalised than it is today.
By the late 90s PM Skateboards had moved to Vancouver from Rossland, sponsored an all Canadian team of riders as well as having their boards produced domestically, having put so much attention and focus into supporting the scene it was only logical to spread the word to small towns and cities across BC.
This gave birth to the 1999 Hicks on Sticks tour that would bring live music and skateboarding to other small communities introduce new generations to the freedom that seemingly only piece of wood, metal and urethane can bring.
At a time when the internet was still in it’s infancy, getting the message out there took more effort than just a few clicks and boobs.
This tour is a story in itself and there’s even a documentary about it, you can watch the full version here: iTunes – Hicks On Sticks
A fresh start
From the crippling debt of the tour a couple of seeds were sown, one of these continues to be benefit to the Vancouver skate scene to this day, while the other was the re-birth of PM Skateboards as Kebbek.
Having moved to Montreal to work and get everyone out of debt from the tour, Ian got in touch with Jody Wilcock and Jim Zielasnki (AKA JimZ), old friends from back home, and urged them to come and work with him in Eastern Canada in the province of Quebec, where the name Kebbek came from.
Jody had designed lowered boards for Downhill Skateboarding, between him and JimZ they started supplying these to Landyachtz while still living in BC, when they moved to Montreal to join Ian, Kebbek was born and the concept of lowered boards moved into it’s heyday of the early 2000s with Kebbek prominently leading the market not only in design, but in research and production.
It’s thanks to work in robotics and CNC which Jody and JimZ brought to Kebbek that the level of detail and thought that went into each board meant that boards were produced with amazing consistency.
JimZ also produced some of the most early CNC trucks for longboards as well, the Speedparts truck, which is still a highly regarded truck today by those in the know.
At this time they were still producing boards for Landyachtz and Ian was behind the Evo’s design, arguably one of the more known lowered boards in downhill skateboarding, which made it’s way onto more podiums worldwide than possibly any board before or since.
Video: Re-edit of the Kebbek video for Concrete Wave DVD Evolution ~2006
Alongside these speedboards, Kebbek produced high quality slalom boards along with occasional PM homage models, in house artist Pierre Gravel supplied artwork for many years worth of ranges while also holding it down as a top contender in Slalom along with other Kebbek team riders Claude Reigner and Jean Pascal (Rockin’ Rookie).
The same ethos of a tight knit crew centred operation that was at the heart of PM is also a core belief in Kebbek, no other brand before or since in the world of downhill and slalom has ever supported so many riders with unique Pro Model boards.
This time though, riders outside of Canada found their names on a few boards, like Australian Legend Stephen Daddow, German master Bassi Haller to name a few.
As the years went on, most of the early Kebbek team retired their models and made way for the young blood, but you’ll still see the legend’s names popping up here and there at events.
To date, most of the technical achievements pioneered by Kebbek have gone on to inspire countless other riders and board designers worldwide.
It’s the constant drive to support their riders and skating as a whole that really sets the tone for Kebbek, while also pushing forwards with board design and this year we see a refined line up with 4 pro models and other models.
To me it’s never been so much about the brand, but instead the people behind it, with great skaters like Emma Daigle, Ben Dub, Amane Kishida and Juergen Gritzner putting out signature boards this year, I’m just as stoked about skating a Kebbek as I was back in 2008.
The free booze and friendly laughs with Alex Dehmel and Pablo Quiles weren’t the only thing to do at the Olson&Hekmati booth at ISPO. By displaying their whole array of longboard decks, including the downhill Bromodel, you could also enjoy watching fast runs by their team riders and finally see their O&H Gnarlicante Collabo freeride wheels in person. The team also featured their longboard specific skate shoes in a new neutral black colour that looks super stylish and comfy to skate in.
Loving everything maple, Kebbek got us curious after teasing us all winter with hints of what has jet to come. With a complete overhaul by a young mastermind Joey Bidner, Kebbek introduced their sick skate house series as well as some pro models, all completely made in Canada. We were also happy to hear, that our friend and party animal Juergen Gritzner is getting a new pro model, Topmount 38.
ROOT LONGBOARDS – The Blitzer and Lilian Gutsch prototypes
Root Longboards got us stoked again with their burnt wood, new board models and sick graphics by the Vaim. Amongst some new highlights in their collection, one board made for their female team rider Lilian Gutsch stood out. Although Lili’s board doesn’t have an official name yet, it promises smaller dimensions suitable for female riders. With a 22 cm width and 86 cm length and a gentle concave it will make every girl want to progress and skate even more.
RAD INFLUNCE – the new wheels by Rider Approved Designs
Rider Approved Designs introduced their new Influence wheel for two of their riders. After more than a year of prototyping and testing at super high speeds and roads across the World, the new pro wheel for Max Ballesteros was finally approved. Available in 77a durometer with a proprietary high rebound urethane that maximizes your speed, it promises to keep you rolling fast while railing lines and bombing mountains. If you are more into going sideways, you could feast your eyes on the Jimmy Riha pro wheel in a smaller versatile shape suitable for anything from fast freeriding to trashing your local streets.
WALZEN WHEELS – finally full lineup!
Sharing a booth with Bolzen trucks, the freshly baked Walzen wheels presented their whole collection of wheels including freeride and DH prototype longboard wheels in different colours and duros. To find out more about the Walzens check out this review by Walzen team rider Roman Tschofen.
Austrian shredder Juergen Gritzner has set out to make an incremental change in the lives of 100 Cubans by bringing 100 skateboards to the island to give away.
For decades, Cuba has had limited access to western lifestyle sports through crippling trade embargoes imposed during the Cold War. Juergen feels that the act of skateboarding has empowered him as he grew from adolescent into adulthood and believes that his sense of community and self-esteem are directly related to his many hours and years rolling through the streets of Vienna and mountains of Austria.
Where one is born has a huge impact on the opportunities that await a human existence and Juergen knows how little people have to struggle in Austria to achieve the basic subsidence compared to virtually everywhere else on the planet. His goal is to use his good fortune achieved through the simple act of skateboarding and pay it forward.
Juergen and his board sponsor KebbeK Skateboards of Canada have teamed up with Skateboards for Hope, a not-for-profit organisation based in Montreal to ship 100 complete Juergen Gritzner pro-model boards to Havana to be given out in the first two weeks of 2016.
The objective is to provide an alternative form of clean and healthy transportation to adolescents and young adults in Cuba. By providing these boards, Juergen hopes to help people be able to get to and from university or work and of course engage in thrill that skateboarding gives him.
Skateboard for Hope is organising the events with the help of the Longboarding for Peace Movement in the New Year in and around Havana with local advocates. Both organisations work to create an oasis of trust and freedom for children, so they can get inspired to become strong leaders in their communities.
With this donation from Kebbek, Skateboards for Hope will see the creation of their first skateboard school in Havana and Juergen will be more than happy to inaugurate the school by giving away his pro model.
KebbeK Skateboards is a manufacturer of skateboards based in Canada founded in 1992 by Ian Comishin. For this project they will be donating over $20,000 worth of equipment and 10 000$ in flights, accommodations and meals.
Longboarding for Peace (LFP) is a movement of peace, balance and justice powered by skateboarders. It was founded by Concrete Wave Magazine publisher Michael Brooke as a vessel for change. It currently operates in over 25 countries with a volunteer “army of peace.” LFP helps co-ordinate delivery of skateboards from a number of generous companies. LFP will flying Betty Esperanza down to Cuba for this trip where she will be teaching the curriculum that has been created specifically for students. A detailed story about the trip will be appearing in the March issue of Concrete Wave.
Skateboards for Hope gives underprivileged children the tools to break the cycle of poverty. Recycled and reused skateboards, longboards and equipment are donated to youth all over the world to promote and teach them the message of community, collaboration and trust. Founder, Betty Esperanza lives her dream through this amazing project; Using skateboards as a tool for hope to build sustainable community projects for youth all over the world.
Hellmann is helping out with the transportation of the equipment.
We will keep you posted about this project.
If you are down for helping out, you can share this post for world to see the good work this organisation are doing. Thank you!
Jürgen Gritzner is a badass and well known downhill skateboarder from Austria. He’s also the first and so far the only Austrian who’s got his pro model deck produced by a non-Austrian company. We’ve met for a chat and talked about how his relationship with Kebbek Skateboards started in the first place, how he ended up on the RAD Wheels and Caliber Trucks flow team as well, about his alter ego “Ill Eagle” and his views on racing. Let’s drop in!
“Be true to yourself. Skateboarding is fun and always should be.” ~ Jürgen Gritzner
Hey Jürgen! How are you dude?
I’m fine! Thank you for asking. Partying and skating with the homies, you know, the usual business.
Great! To start off, tell us about how you got hooked up with Kebbek Skateboards?
It’s funny how that went down. My buddy, Felix Rupitsch (Bigmountainskate.com) was partying at a local Bastl Boards Bash and met the German distributor for Kebbek. They talked, had fun and in the end he mentioned that Kebbek’s looking for a European skater to represent them. Felix told him some s*** about me, how I love skateboarding, creating music and art, plus all other kinds of things I care about very much. It all ended up with Kebbek being pretty excited to get me on board and the next time I’ve met Felix, he asked if I would like join Kebbek’s team. I said “F*** yeah”, got in touch with them and sealed the deal. Later on, when I was already on their team, I finally got to meet Ian, the founder of Kebbek Skateboards.
That’s great. So, Kebbek was your first sponsor. How did you manage to get involved with your other sponsors? You’re also on a RAD Wheels team, right? Yes, Kebbek was my first sponsor. Joining their team spiked up my motivation to travel to the USA and get some skate action overseas. I went there by myself and got to know the Skate House Media dudes. We were skating together all days long. A year later, in winter 2012/13, I managed to get back to the States, but this time I went with my homie Flo Wagner (Landyachtz Longboards, Hawgs Wheels) and we stayed there for five weeks. We’ve met Louis Pilloni in San Diego and showed us around the Sector 9 headquarters. That was exciting. He hooked us up with some wheels and a bunch of stickers. Loads of stickers. At some point, he finally turned over to me and asked “You wanna join the RAD crew?”. You can assume what my answer was, haha!
Of course, your answer was “F*** yeah!”. And you’re repping the Caliber Trucks as well, right?
That’s true, yes. It was not long after we’ve returned back home to Austria when I received a phone call from Dave Tinachi. He told about James Kelly joining the Caliber Trucks, but what really flipped me, was when said how each pro skater on their team gets to choose one “flow team rider” as well and that James chose me! Pretty rad!
What’s expected from you as a team rider for Kebbek and the other sponsors?
Basic stuff, you know. Going out skateboarding, snapping some shots and doing some other media works, like movies and sharing online. Once I mentioned that I would enjoy doing some graphics as well and Ian gave me the chance to do the designs for some flyers, stickers, posters and similar for Kebbek in 2014. Later that year, I also proposed that we could produce a promotion video for my pro model boards. Teammates Katiana Torrebella and Benjamin Dubreuil joined the party and we went on a nice skate trip for filming in a skateboarding heaven, Barcelona. My homies over at Frame Fatale from Vienna did a really good job filming and editing this movie.
That’s a great video. How did you end up with pro model boards?
After ISPO 2013, Ian and I really got to know each other. After we did a promotion tour across Europe he arranged a job for me in a German company where he was working as well. We talked a lot about skateboarding, my visions and other stuff. I guess he enjoyed having me around and wanted to push my skateboarding even further. He kind of mentioned once something about the pro model deck, but it didn’t seem to be so serious at that time. It was as all nice and chilled until at ISPO 2014 he pulled out a catalogue with the new boards. As I had a look at it, I saw my pro model downhill and pool decks in there. A big surprise! F***, Ian just knew that I also love to shred trannies and street. I was very happy about it.
So, Ian kind of secretly examined your skateboarding mind?
Haha! Well yes, if you want to put it that way. In order to pull that off with the pool deck, he definitely had to sneak into my mind. Regarding the downhill deck, he already knew what I like. I told him that I would love it if the board would feature a kicktail to be able to play around and that a platform has to be wide enough for my big feet. The same goes for a solid concave and a rocker. He did a pretty good job! I got even more stoked about it when he included “Ill Eagle” in the graphics for both boards.
What is “Ill Eagle”?
It’s kind of my alter ego, my artistic name. For example, I build skateboards with old snowboard moulds and create lots of art pieces with my hands. And in the end, it stands a symbol of my rebellious personality and skateboarding style. I’m always flying around! Haha!
Most people know you for your badass freeride style, but probably for some racing as well as you where “flying” at Kozakov back in 2014. Where do you draw a line between racing and freeride?
Phuu, I think those two are hard to separate. Personally, I think in racing there are moments and situations which almost never happen while freeriding. And this is good as it is. Those special moments give me the thrill of racing on a skateboard. Only in racing you push your limits to 110%.
With freeriding it is just all about fun, racing is really serious. I never freeride without my homies. You know, I want to enjoy a good sunny day full of skateboarding without any stress and unhealthy competition.
But you are still a competitive skater?
Hm, that’s a hard question. Probably, there are times when I get extra ambitious, especially when racing. But I’m not that eager for winning like some riders out there, who are ready to subordinate everything just to win a heat or a race. I’m definitely not that kind of a skater. I love racing and getting that adrenaline rush, but some people are just going to crazy about winning. You can often see how they f*** each other up. This is not something that I stand for. What we do when racing is still skateboarding. Be true to yourself. Skateboarding is fun and always should be.
Great words and a nice closure for our interview. Any more last words, Jürgen?
Yes, I think so as well. Go out, skate and have fun. And of course big thanks to my sponsors Kebbek Skateboards, RAD Wheels and Caliber Trucks as well as a big shoutout to my homies!