If there has been one thing to keep us going during the lockdown and quarantine due to the Coronavirus Pandemic it has been the solid skateboarding content we have been treated to. Almost every other day it seems someone is releasing a full part on the various skateboarding websites and channels.
The reality is that due to the restrictions on outdoor activities, there is probably no better time to release a part with all eyes online. We have certainly not been starved on quality skating and so Zeles take a look at the Top 5 Skate Parts of the year so far.
Whilst none of the below have ever been Thrasher’s Skater of the Year, perhaps this year will be the year…
5 - Hyun Kummer’s Versace Plug Part
Hyun Kummer aka Versace Plug dropped his ‘Versace Plug’ part in February of this year and it did not disappoint. The 20 year old from Bremen in Germany had amassed a significant amount of mind blowing tricks on his instagram over the past few years and so it was satisfying to finally see a full part showing his talent. Hyun probably had enough tricks to fill a 4 or 5 minute part but the just under 3 minutes of immaculate style we are treated to feels just about right.
A fresh addition to the Nike SB roster, his part is full of perfect two pieces requiring quick footing adjustments, landing everything with finesse and elegantly float popping out of every ledge trick.
Hyun’s part was filmed all over Europe with some nice new skate spots on display and the part everyone had been crying out for certainly delivered!
Eye-catcher : Nollie Double flip over stairway and rail/Hard Flip up a long 6 stair.
Ender: Switch Double Flip down double set.
Soundtrack: Chief Keef "Less Speed"
4 - Aurelien Giraud - Street Part
Still relatively fresh from exploding onto the skateboarding scene in early 2019, the 22 year old from Lyon has been busy recently, . It’s crazy to think it is only just little over a year ago we were treated to his Bangin’ Berrics part and a ‘Where the Hell did this guy come from?’ section shortly after.
He was the winner of 'Best Trick' at Tampa Pro 2019 and has now made his way onto the elite team of Plan B, collecting other sponsors along the way of Nike SB, Independent and Skull Candy to name a few.
Giraud’s ‘Street Part’ released in February of this year opens with a huge three sixty flip down a 14 stair and it is his front foot catching three sixty flips and tracksuit pants which have quickly become his trademark.
Giraud attacks stairs, rails and the ledges in his home city in Lyon at the iconic Hôtel de Ville, first made famous being skated by fellow country man JB Gillet in various video parts.
This part is heavy! Giraud has been killing it at contests and killing it on the streets. He seems to be the full package, managing everything from stairs, rails, gaps, transition, flatground and all sorts of tech.
Magnifique from the Frenchman.
Eye Catcher: Hard Flip to Backside Lipslide
Ender: Hardflip Revert (at about 100mph down multiple stairs)
3 - Roman Lisivka - Primitive Skateboard's "Rome" Video
Another mind blowing promo from Primitive for the king of Stalin Plaza, Roman Lisivka.
The great thing about any addition to the Primitive team is that it usually means a perfectly edited promo filled with jaw dropping tech tricks and a soundtrack to match. They quite simply get it right every time.
Rom kills it with ridiculous lines to destroying ledges, from Radio Korea to Barcelona and even a nice Fakie Flip to Switch Manual, Switch Heel Flip out at Pier 7.
The regular tricks are few and far between but what’s there are not far from perfect and as usual he throws in some awesome smooth tech manual combos. Another skater on another level from the most technical team in skateboarding.
Eye Catcher: Switch Pop Shuv-it to Switch 5-0 and Switch Backside Flip over wall at Stalin Plaza
Ender: Double ledge Fakie 5-0, fakie flip to switch 5-0
Soundtrack: Tupac ‘Out On Bail’ and Tupac ’Fright Night’
2 - Chris Joslin - Introducing The Joslin 2 From Etnies
A week after releasing the raw footage for his three sixty flip attempts at El Toro, Chris Joslin dropped his Etnies part for his new shoe ‘The Joslin 2.’
The quality and volume of footage that Joslin puts out over the course of a year is quite phenomenal. His ability to continue to put out part after part and outdo himself almost every time needs huge praise.
Having earlier in his career filmed a whole Etnies part in a month, fatherhood doesn’t seemed to have slowed him down in serving out more awesome footage.
Some might say that releasing a new shoe when the world is potentially entering a recession may not make the best business sense but Joslin simply lets his skating do the talking here.
Wonderfully colour coordinated at times in the part, it is evident Joslin is motivated and committed to mixing it up a little this time, with even his manuals ending in huge drops.
There is no messing about for Joslin in this part with an impressive ender of a huge Switch Frontside Flip down a long and chunky 8 stair.
The part is perfectly put together by veteran editor Mike Manzoori and shows the Plan B rider is one of the hardest working skaters on the planet and arguably one of the greatest to ever do it.
Eye Catcher: Big Spin down 12 stair, Fakie Shuv-it on flat to reset board position, then Switch Big Spin down another 12 stair. Joslin also busts out a huge Switch Backside Flip down double set.
Ender: Switch Frontside Flip
Soundtrack: 92elm - “Doppelgänger” Eric Rodriguez and Ignacio Gonzales - The Burials - “Femme & LeVoux” Eric Rodriguez and Ignacio Gonzales - The Burials - “Principia”
1 - Shane O’Neill - Nike SB - The Extra Bit
When Shane O’Neill releases a part the whole skateboarding world stops and watches. You know that you will be about to watch something special.
I don’t believe anyone is more deserving of a pro shoe in Skateboarding than Shane O’Neill and Nike SB finally awarded him with this in February, releasing ‘The Extra Bit’ part as the promo.
Ask anyone and they will tell you that skateboarding is a very difficult art to master. If you think almost every single trick possible has already been done before, Shane O’Neill will prove you wrong.
In my time watching skateboarding I don’t believe I have ever seen anyone as smooth on a board. He has the most inventive, effortless style we have ever encountered and it is his ability to make the most difficult tricks look easy that leave you mesmerised. Shane’s Nike SB The Extra Bit is four and a half minutes of skateboarding perfection. It is one of those parts you need to rewatch many times to fully appreciate it.
Shane mixes it up from rails to benches to ledges, and reminds us once again that he can pretty much flip into and out of every grind or slide imaginable.
Anyone in the industry who knows Shane will also tell you he is one of the most down to earth people you will meet. At one stage Shane was even paying fellow skater Diego Najera out of his own pocket while trying to nail down a sponsor. As a requirement for Shane first joining Primitive, he said he would only join if he could bring Diego with him. Shane also stresses how important it is to stay loyal to his friends, also keeping the same film crew he has had since ‘day one.’ He clearly places high values on friendship and relationships whilst also having a sensible suave for business.
Despite having a share of Primitive, Shane left the team after a few years to start his own company ‘April Skateboards’ and began building his team. Shane’s logic in building his team was to ensure that skaters who were perhaps not being pushed to their full potential on other board companies, got a chance to express themselves and make sponsors pay attention to their talent. Shane is willing to put his faith in these skaters who perhaps were wasting away on ‘flow’ for some companies and give them an opportunity. Shane has previously mentioned how he will not put anyone on a ‘flow team’ on April Skateboards and won’t wait around to recruit if the talent is there. With the abundance of young talent in skateboarding these days, there is no point waiting around, especially with all the ready made social media channels for skating to be pushed into the mainstream.
Shane is playing a huge part in the evolution of Skateboarding and the industry itself. It looks like Shane will continue to spoil us and at 30 years old, there is still plenty more to come.
Shane dedicated his part to friend and fellow Australian skateboarder Lewis Marnell who sadly passed away in 2013 aged 30.
If his friend could only see him now he would most certainly be proud. The heights he has reached and for the simple fact that he is no doubt in the conversation for possibly one of the greatest ever to grace a skateboard.
Ender: Three Sixty Flip to Front Krook, Nollie Flip out to fakie.
Soundtrack: Dion - "In and Out of The Shadows"