In 1989, a 12-year-old Bob Burnquist stood at the top of the newly built vert ramp at the Ultra Skatepark in Sao Paulo, Brazil, about to drop in for his very first time. All he needed to do was stay calm, lean forward and ride it out. What followed instead was a slam of epic proportions, straight to his face. And in a nod to the resilience and determination that allowed him to turn pro only two short years later, he dusted himself off, climbed back up to the top, and did the exact same thing again.
In 1995, still unknown outside Brazil, Burnquist exploded onto the scene at Vancouver’s venerated Slam City Jam. Due to his pioneering mastery of all things opposite of stance, Bob stunned the vertical wolf pack by claiming his first ever victory at an international event. Beginners luck? Not so much.
Slam City was just a preview. In the years since, Bob went on to roll over every conceivable obstacle in his path and in doing so changed skateboarding. He’s been likened to a magician and a Zen master, but it might just be that he’s crazy. His list of accomplishments include becoming the first and only human to do a natural full pipe loop, the switch loop, and the switch air loop. In addition to skating in the Dew Tour since it’s inception, he also 50-50’d into the Grand Canyon, won X Games gold in vert and Mega, was crowned Thrasher’s Skater of the Year in 1997, carried the Olympic torch for Brazil, and filmed more than a few of the most progressive video parts of all time. If Bob hasn’t already done it, it probably either can’t be done or he just hasn’t gotten around to it yet.