There are some skaters who get respect. Period.
What they have done on (and off) a board puts them in a LEGEND category that few can deny.
To quote Kelly Hart “If you’re a skateboarder coming up, please respect who came before you.” [Timestamp: 1h46m39s]
Why is Mark Gonzales so great?
Mark Gonzales run at an NSA Amateur contest, Venice Beach 1986 c/o Alva ‘Rock Monster’
Mark Gonzales a.k.a. The Gonz
Can skate everything, rides all board shapes, established himself as an internationally acclaimed artist.
- Ollied from the top of the wave to the top of the big three at Embarcadero thus creating the Gonz Gap. [Source: Noneco] He later kickflipped it. [Timestamp 1m26s]
- Ollie grabbed Wallenberg. [Timestamp: 1m3s]
- Ollied in the Carwash bank [Timestamp: 2m17s] successfully but slammed riding off the sidewalk.
- Pioneered handrail skating [Timestamp: 1m17s] and threading-the-needle tricks [Timestamp: 5m45s] (i.e. catching the skateboard post-hippy jump before landing).
- Turned pro for Vision but quit to start Blind Skateboards.
- Quit Blind to launch ATM Click later known as 60/40 Skateboards under Deluxe Distribution. Left 60/40 to join Real Skateboards.
- Left Real to start Krooked Skateboards.
- Began collaboration with Adidas in 1994 to then endorse full sponsorship 1998 with a pro-model shoe.
Why is he important:
Mark Gonzales is referenced as most skateboarders’ favourite skateboarder because he embodies the skateboarder as an artist, creator and disruptor. Mark Gonzales skates everything and more often than not on uncommon boards which highlights his natural ability and creativity. Although he is not the most technical skateboarder, he is known for pushing his skating further than your average professional or amateur of the time. Even in his Fifties, Mark Gonzales continues to skate and innovate.