Just had a bit of a chat with Troy from Skateventure: Southeast Asia. Looks like they have had a couple of days off earning some food and keep playing drums and guitar. They get back on the road tomorrow. Troy and Huw have skated over 200km in 23 days, got food poisoning, been put up in a 5* hotel and camped under mango trees!
Before They left Skatefurther had a bit of a chat with Troy and asked him a few questions.
SF: When did you start skating? Have you done any special training for this trip?
TB: As a youngster I lived out in Waikuku beach, North Canterbury, and we didnt have any footpaths to skate on. For that reason, my parents probably never bought me a board. I was involved in rugby and swimming for the rest of my childhood so I didnt have the time to play around and skate, I was either training, eating or sleeping. I’d always been interested by longboards and I love the feeling of going fast, whatever the method; car, bike, running . My girlfriend bought me a board for xmas in 2008 and I was loving life. A few days later I walked back into the flat with a smashed arm and a smile on my face to tell my flatmates what had happened. Nobody believed me that my arm was broken as I was just too happy from skating. As soon as my arm was healed and I was back on the board. Videos like “Whirling Dervish” and “Let Go” provided me with further motivation and reason to get on my board and go for a skate. For the last 2 years I’ve parked up my car and began to skate absolutely everywhere; University, work, the mall, supermarket, the pool. As my car began to collect dust, I became a more confident skater. In the peak of my training I was doing up to 300km a week, working on switch and mongo.
SF: what made you decide to skate 3000 odd km? In 2009 I discovered long distance skating.
TB: I was amazed at the endless possibilities and from that moment onward I began planning my first trip. A long distance skate is the perfect holiday for me as I love skating, traveling, meeting interesting people and opening my eyes to diverse cultures. I couldnt think of a better way to spend 2 months. When I first launched the website, the response was huge, everybody wanted to come along to the party. I offered my friend Huw a place on the trip and he accepted right at the last moment.
SF: Why Southeast Asia, what made you choose there?
TB: Over the past 3 summers of my University life I have traveled and worked in overseas countries: Australia, Dubai, Brunei. I’ve always been facinated by Thailand and planned to travel around exploring for a few months. Enlightened by the possibilities of long distance skating I commited myself to the adventure. I started emailing Rob Thompson and halfway through planning my journey I realised that Jim Pettersen had nearly completed a similar journey. Jim then helped greatly with the planning of Skateventure.
SF: Describe you boards and any specialist equipment you have taken with you.
I like the feel of top mount decks so I designed a 38″ downhill / pushing crossover board. The deck has a 2 inch drop to make it easier to push and a deep tub concave to lock the feet in. I talked to Pulse Boards and my dream board became a reality.
My Macpac bag is amazing, lightweight, strong and has many pockets on the outside for gloves and food. Perfect for any long distance skate.
Our Sporting Sail is also a vital piece of equiptment along with helmet and gloves. Without it we wouldnt have been able to conquer the 2578 twists and turns of road 1095. With the sail deployed we can confidently take on any hill with stability and style. Skating downhill is a lot harder with 20kgs of food, water and gear on you back.
Lightweight merino clothing is also irreplacable, its cool on the skin, breathable and doesnt smell, even after a 110km skate in 35 degree heat.
SF: How have you sponsors helped out?
Our sponsors made the planning of Skateventure a lot easier. Pulse Boards, Ultimate Boards, Stoked Skateboards, Steinlager Pure, Skategear, Sporting Sails; All donated us with some gear that was invaluable to our journey. Medlab sponsored us our vaccinations and Horleys sponsored us Replace hydration powder so we can keep hydrated in the tropical heat.
MacPac gave us a great discount on our packs and Seismic gave us a good discount on wheels, trucks and bearings.
SF: anyone you’d like to thank?
I’d like to thank Rob Thompson for paving the way with his 12000km skate opening up endless opportunities and also Mr Jim for the advice. Long Treks on Skate Decks are also very inspiring and have reinvented long distance skating.
I’d also like to thank Lynn John and David Hammer for helping organise our Vaccines and water purifier.
Let the Skateventure begin!