The epitome of the Philippine longboarding scene.
An experience that defines the spirit of longboarding in this side of the world.
—Juan Duazo, owner of Driftwood Local Enterprises
EXTREME SPORTS such as longboarding is yet to be standardized here in the Philippines. Point in fact, only a really few Filipinos understand the intricate physics working behind the sport.
Skaters rolling their wheels in the busy streets, abandoned parking lots, and secret alleyways are oftentimes regarded by society as eccentrics who are “wasting time” and “not thinking about their parents or their future.”
“Reckless fools! Maybe they’re cutting classes, doing drugs, or drinking.” “Don’t they know how dangerous it is?” Such classic derogatory remarks stem from the general public’s misunderstanding and prejudice over skateboarding. (Another case would be the absence of a decent skatepark in the city while the presence of a basketball court is almost everywhere.) Despite society’s lack of support and judgments, the skater’s spirit won’t break all that easy and will continue to rise.
A group of longboarders is slowly but steadily making a breakthrough in the country’s culture that they caught the eyes of internationally acclaimed skaters who are now joining them in spreading the true spirit of the sport with fellow Filipinos.
“The simplicity of life and brotherhood brought up by skating is what we want to share,” Joseph Falcone, an experienced longboard racer and a skateboard craftsman for Driftwood Local Enterprises, states during the press conference for the 7th Visayan Longboarding Trilogy, an annual pilgrimage of longboarders, held at KOA Tree House last April 2, 2016.
Now Asia’s grandest longboarding event, the fourteen-day Visayan longboarding trilogy kicked off in the wonderful island of Siquijor for the Mystical Island Freeride and Traditional Race (April 5–7) and continued and culminated in the mystifying spots of Cebu, in Oslob for the Super Mango Skate Clinic (April 10–12), which was hosted by the world’s #1 pro downhill skateboarder, Patrick Switzer, and in Carcar for the Veggie Hill International Downhill Federation (IDF) World Qualifying Series Race (April 15–17). Almost 300 participants joined the IDF race.
Here’s the list of winners:
Mystical Island (Siquijor) Traditional Race Winners
Class B Category
Champion – Cameron Hancock (Australia)
1st runner-up – Brian Russel Banzal (Philippines)
2nd runner-up – Gene Nillas (Canada)
3rd runner-up – Sebastian Redila (Philippines)
Champion – Charlie Guitering (Philippines)
1st runner-up – Franz Brian “Pantoy” Solasco (Philippines)
2nd runner-up – RJ Ancot (Philippines)
3rd runner-up – Charles “Bodeck” Reuyan (Philippines)
Champion – Abigail Viloria (Philippines)
1st runner-up – Sharon Marie Diocera (Philippines)
2nd runner-up – Elissa Mah (New Zealand)
3rd runner-up –Anna Pixner (Austria)
4th runner-up – Kara Marbe Urbiztondo (Philippines)
Super Mango Clinic (Oslob) Stand-Up Race Winners
Champion – RJ Ancot (Philippines)
1st runner-up –Tiboy Santiago (Philippines)
2nd runner-up – Michael De la Serna (Philippines)
3rd runner-up – Manu Duhamel (Canada)
Grupo Nopo Outlaw (San Fernando) Invitational Winners
Champion – Roy Churchland (Australia)
1st runner-up – Danny Carlson (Canada)
2nd runner-up – DandoyTongco (Philippines)
3rd runner-up – Sam Randalls (Canada)
Veggie High IDF World Qualifying Series (Carcar) Winners
Champion – Patrick Switzer (Canada)
1st Runner-up – Riley Harris (Canada)
2nd Runner-up – Max Ballesteros (Brazil/USA)
3rd Runner-up – Danny Clarkson (Canada)
Champion – Rachel Bruskoff (USA)
1st runner-up – Elissa Mah (New Zealand)
2nd runner-up – Jenny Schaurte (United Kingdom)
3rd runner-up – Tamara Prader (Switzerland)
Champion – Franz Brian “Pantoy” Solasco (Philippines)
1st runner-up – Sebastian Chanco (Philippines)
2nd runner-up – Enrique Chino Padin (Philippines)
3rd runner-up – Mario Nathaniel Umali (Philippines)
IDF Masters’ Division
1st place – Benjamin Hay (Australia)
2nd place – Ryan Nicholls (Australia)
3rd place – Caloy Sambrano (Philippines)
The Visayan Longboarding Trilogy aims “to unite the local skating communities in the country and strengthen the foundations of this sprouting lifestyle”; to develop “riding skills, first aid and safety awareness, and to teach lessons on how to be an ambassador in one’s community.” It also aims to create a breakthrough in the sport, thus improving its integrity and safety, and to appreciate our own talents that are now competing on a world-class level.
The trilogy inspires eco-extreme sports tourism in the Philippines island paradises.
(Published on Sun.Star Weekend: April 24, 2016)