Guiri Reyes, a Brazilian transplant who has been shredding the curbs, stairway railings, and streets of Miami for the past few years, recently won first place in the Air Attack Street Best Trick competition during the World Cup Skateboarding (WCS) in Belgium.
How old is this guy? A mere two decades old. When you see him skate, you'll feel like you're watching the Discovery Channel because he moves with the ease and precision of a lion. We had the opportunity to chat with Reyes and Jak Soria from Out of Hand Productions - his official sponsor.
When the guys from Out of Hand first saw Reyes skate, they knew they wanted him to be part of their team. Explains Soria, "Guiri caught our eye when we first saw him skate. He was an awesome skater and had the presence that our vision required, not just for the skate film we were putting together at the time, but the movement as a whole. He had culture, talent, and above all respect for others. It's hard not to love the guy."
If Out of Hand decides to sponsor you, it's because you got "it." These twenty-something locals have a popular band (Pages and the Out of Hand Band) with a video on MTVu and another one soon to be released, they've got a skate team (hence, the Reyes sponsorship), and a skateboard and clothing line that sells in thirty-four stores worldwide.
So, when Out of Hand signed him, Reyes thanked the skate gods. "OOH (Out of Hand) is not really a company in my eyes. I tend to see them more as a family. I originally became a personal fan of the ideology behind the 'Hip Hop N Roll' movement that mainly portrays unity amongst all races, ages and cultures. As a skater and artist I've always felt like I identified with the crew," he says.
Reyes says that feeling of unity translates to the skater community. "You get used to meeting different people when you've been skating around for years. Linking with other skaters is part of the beauty of the sport itself. There is no team when you are on your board, just friends that ride with you. These people come in all genders, races, and ages. You meet them in contests, skating on the streets, through friends etc. Traveling is a good thing; everyone should travel and get a chance to step away from what they usually have in front of them. It really is eye-opening, a culture shock. The streets are life's biggest mentor. Respect, humanity, and so on - it's a mind-opening experience."
That idealistic nobility is sweet and all, but what about the win? Reyes describes the trick that earned him first place, "At the time I hadn't really attempted anything heavy-duty during the competition jam session. I had a trick in mind and then once I felt I had the necessary space, I landed a kickflip backside 50-50 off the car roof with only ten seconds left on the time clock. It's wild to think that the game can change in one second -- for me that was a very crazy moment."
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A world champion skater at 20, we had to ask Soria what he sees in Reyes' future. "The future is a hard thing to predict for a versatile individual like Guiri Reyes. He has so many talents and passions that it's hard to keep up with him even now. I would like to say skateboarding, but his ambition for the camera definitely creates some doubts. Regardless his source of income, skating will always be a part of who he is and success will always be the outcome."
Of course, a young, talented guy doesn't look that far ahead. Says Reyes about his future, "In a general sense I'll keep doing what I do. Skating, traveling, meeting people, and constantly evolving."