By Rob Brink
Having been a fan of Ronnie's since day one, you can imagine how stoked I was to interview him for etnies when he got on the team this year. The following goodies are from his etnies.com team page.
Ronnie Creager is undoubtedly a skateboarding genius—one of the most gifted, talented and innovative skateboarders in the world. His creativity and effortless style ooze with every trick he does. Even if he's just pushing around, Ronnie is casual.
Ronnie is known for his mellow attitude, focus on having fun skateboarding, and producing some of the most technical video parts in skateboarding's history, but also for versatility—whether it be mini ramp, stairs, ledges or just goofing around—Ronnie makes it all look flawless. His manual trick prowess is nearly unmatched by anyone in skateboarding's history. One viewing of Ronnie's parts (yes there's more than one of them) in Blind's recent release, What If? and you'll know he's still at the top of his game.
Ronnie's been getting back into the contest scene in the last few years and a 2004 World Cup victory proves he's not doing to shabby. etnies is proud to have Ronnie as part of the team. He is an inspiration to all. Happy skateboarding!
Date of birth: 1-14-74
Hometown: Orange, California
Current Residence: Orange, California
Stance: Right Foot Forward
Occupation: Professional skateboarder
Sponsors: etnies Footwear, Blind Skateboards, Tensor Trucks, Ricta Wheels, Mob Grip Tape, Oust Bearings
- Learning new tricks
- Getting a difficult trick on film
- Just out skateboarding having a fun time with friends
- etnies and Blind skateboards of course
- Movies at the theater
- Not being able to skate
- When it gets dark too fast
- Bugs in my food
- Chores and yard work
- Getting kicked out of spots or harassed by police at skateboard parks
- Bad things
How and when did you start skating?
My neighbor introduced a skateboard to me at a very early age. (On my stomach like superman) I was around the age of four when skateboarding really engraved itself in my brain. From then on it was hard to pull the board out of my hands. That's what my parents say.
Do you remember what kind of board it was?
Hmm...it was thin for sure...like a banana seat for a bike. The first real board that I ever got from a skateboard shop was a Ken Park pro model with all sorts of different colored grip tape. Before that it was ninja / kung fu crappy boards from K-Mart or some other thrift shop.
Were there any early influences on your skating?
I would just skate all over town, try to skate with anybody that was skateboarding, read magazines and look at the cool photos and dream. As I got older I looked up to all the guys in videos. I would watch, Ohio Skate Out, Street Style in Tempe, Vision Skate Escape, Street Skating with Rob and Natas, instructional videos My dad would rent skate videos at the store and then copy them to the camera so I could watch them. It was mostly all contest/demo videos. I really like the 1281 New Deal Video. Super sick!
You're known as a more technical skater, doing lots of manual and ledge tricks—crazy flip-in, flip-out stuff. What made this type of skating appeal to you more than say, transitions or rails?
That is a good question. I'm not really sure. I just go out and skate and do what I enjoy doing and have fun. It may have to do with all the videos growing up and stuff.
What's your favorite stuff to skate?
I like to skate stuff that has a variety of things set up in one area. Wheelie pads are really fun for me, I also like ledges that go over a dirt gap or grass so you have to make it over a section and on the other side, Bumps over fire hydrants or sidewalks, little double sets with cool stuff to skate after or before. I like skateboarding down the street trying tricks wherever. It's embarrassing when you fall or hit that crack you didn't see and people driving by just laugh or honk.
Where, what, and with whom would your dream session be?
That is another hard question. I've had a bunch of them. At professional contests where everybody is there skateboarding really good, at demo's and street spots. Sometimes it's hard to skate because it's so fun to watch the other guys do tricks and stuff.
What's the last trick you learned?
The last trick I learned was on a ramp. (Blunt to half cab in.) It took two hours at the park but I'm glad I spent the time to learn them because I can do them pretty consistent now as long as the ramp isn't too big.
Name a trick you want to learn but can't seem to get?
Whoa! How about a name a whole bunch? Front feeble, back smith, hardflips, nollie backside heelflips. If I do make one it feels really awkward and super sketchy.
In the last year you've been entering, and doing pretty well in contests. What brought this about? Did you just get psyched on contests or something?
Contests have always been extremely stressful and they make me very nervous all the time. I can't seem to feel normal and calm when it comes time to skate. My knees shake, I always have to use the bathroom, and then my feet won't work. I get lucky at times and stay on. I've been fortunate to place very well a couple times. Usually it's around 20th place for the average. I need some lessons from Sheckler and Bastien but those guys contest ability I can't comprehend.
How could contests be improved?
A few parking blocks, automobiles, tree, hole in the ground with water in it, jump ramp, wall ride for everyone to skate. That would be fun! I think all the contest that I've been to in the past two years are just set up for putting on a show or getting ratings on television.
Name one thing in skateboarding that bothers you.
The fact that you can't skate professionally forever and does eventually start to get harder and harder.
What do you like about being a pro?
Being pro means you get paid for skateboarding, if I'm not mistaken. I think I have a very minor learning problem which my brain can't stop thinking about skateboarding and focus on other things. So with out a nine-to-five working job or Associates/Master's degree in school it definitely helps me survive. I like traveling the world for demos and meeting new people that skate and need help.
Not having to work?
As much fun and enjoyment skateboarding brings me. It is work!
Is anything bad about being a pro?
No! Ok yes, maybe a few things but I can't think of any right now that I want everybody to know about. Nothing that should shatter your dreams or your pursuit of a professional career in skateboarding.
What do you think of skate videos these days?
I love watching the latest skate video from companies. I'll skate ten miles and shovel out twenty bucks for a video. I know it's also a way for companies to make extra money and pump up the brand, which is not always easy for the riders to do. I want to watch something fun, neat; silly that has skateboarding in it.
What's your favorite video and favorite video part?
I've been watching Almost Round 3, Skate More, New Blood a lot lately. I have a lot of favorite videos. Can't seem to pick one right now.
Of all the parts you filmed, which are you most proud of?
Ha ha. I don't know. My next one if I can finish it.
What do you have in the works right now that What If is over? Filming for anything?
Filming is a never ending process and something I have to always do and try. Its nice to get a cool trick on film and be able to watch it and save it for later in case your company springs the idea of a video on you.
What do you like about etnies?
Is this a trick question? The shoes are great; the team has such great personality and ability. I think Arto Saari, Bastien Salabanzi, Rune Glifberg, and Ryan Sheckler are amazing skateboarders that truly have skateboarding in their hearts and want to make this a better skate world. Knowing that these guys are behind the brand tells me only good things about the company and shoes they skate it.
What's your favorite etnies model to skate in?
I'm wearing Bastien's shoe right now getting use to it. I have a sample pair of Sheckler's shoe that he gave me in Europe that feel real good, but I have to say that Arto's shoes the one that keeps finding its way on my feet.
What is coming up for the future with etnies?
We are all pushing for the new Creager shoe to come out and be perfect for skateboarding.
Will you be coming to the Goofy vs. Regular contest this October? And how do you feel about that contest itself?
I think I'll go and skate a bit, I'm not sure if I will enter. I don't think I'd be too happy if I messed up the goofy team and made them loose or do bad. It's all in good fun for skateboarding. Go goofy!
What do you enjoy besides skating?
I try to skate as much as possible. I like video games, movies, golfing, skim boarding, but mostly just skateboarding, eating sleeping and skateboarding.
What are your future goals?