Yuri Botelho grew up in Brazil and spent more than a decade in Bilbao, Spain. He recently made the move to Barcelona and couldn't be happier in his new hometown: 'There's just too many spots!'
Photography by Miguel Triano and David Montes Aldea
Interview by Joram Nijs
Where were you born, where did you grow up and where do you live now?
I was born in Brazil. I lived in Belo Horizonte with my family and started to blade there as a kid. When I was 10 years old I went to live with my mother in Bilbao. It's a beautiful little city in the north of Spain with a chill life. It's a good place for blading but the weather is bad sometimes. I lived in Bilbao for 12 years.
Six months ago I moved to Barcelona to study and blade. It's a perfect city for me. It's so big and there's so much people from different countries with different cultures. The weather's good, there's a beach, big parties and just too many spots! It's definitely where I want to live!
What should people definitely do when they visit Barcelona?
Try to find some spots to blade! It's almost too easy! If it's summer you can hit the beach afterwards or you can go have a cheap party at the Ramblas. You can always buy cold beers for a euro there from the Pakistanis in the street.
The city is well known for those beercan-guys, but also for it's thieves and pickpockets. Do you have any experience with that?
You can see stuff like that all the time at the Ramblas. The thieves are usually only interested in the wallets, bags and phones from tourists though. I've never had problems myself.
What's your favorite spot when you go out blading in Barcelona? What makes it special?
Its hard to choose because every month we find new spots here, but I really like the Rambla Brasil. It's a big place with different spots, a lot of big metal ledges that rise up, ramps, gaps and a lot of hidden stuff. You can really get creative there. I like it so much because I live there. I can always go out the door and just blade there a little.
Some people stretch, others watch a blading-dvd. Tell us about your pre-blading routine.
Sometimes I go to school with my skates in my bag, ready to go. On other days I just play some songs that get me motivated at full volume at home before going out to blade. I stretch sometimes. I also exercise a bit so my body gets stronger to blade.
Do you ever go out blading alone?
I don't like to blade alone. In Bilbao I was blading alone with a filmer sometimes, but here in Barcelona I always blade with my friends from the Dyamond/Guerreros crew.
Who's in that crew?
Joni Prados, Michel Prado, Carlos Campillo, David Montes Aldea, Carlos Bernal, Marvin,Sancy and Oscar Prats.The blading-scene is really strong here. We're always pushing each other and we're motivated do more for rollerblading here in Spain. I love my crew. We're really motivated do new tricks and take it to the next level. Every day we're planning to go to a new spot or to go to searching for spots in new areas.
What's the one trick you absolutely have to do every session?
True mistral because the feeling of the trick is just too good!
What's the one trick you wipe-out on the most?
True savanna because I need to do it with a switch savanna. I don't know why, but I just can't get this trick right.
What gets you juiced or makes you smile while on blades?
When I go blading with my homies and we do big tricks it's just an amazing feeling after the session. When I have a good and productive day I come back home with a big smile!
Do you go out blading with specific tricks in mind?
When I know what spot I'll be going to I'll think of some tricks in advance, but sometimes I can't do them and then I just pick another trick. I like to have chill sessions in the city sometimes without knowing exactly where I will end up and what tricks I'll be doing, just having fun. I never really train on tricks.
Staying hydrated is important while throwing down hammers. What's your preferred blading-drink? H20? Coffee? Beer?
H20 of course!
We all know weird stuff tends to happen during blading sessions. Tell us about at least one random thing that happened while you were out blading in Barcelona.
In Barcelona you can see weird things every day. Two weeks ago I saw a girl give two guys a blowjob at the same time in the middle of the street… I really wish I didn't see that! Haha!
What's your ideal after-session routine?
Chill with the homies for a couple of hours and then go and have a big dinner!
What's the one spot or trick you've been thinking of doing in Barcelona, but haven't got around to yet?
The rails at the forum: 360 topsoul to transfer topsoul. I will try it soon.
What would you like to say to someone who's reading this thing just before going out to blade?
Never doubt, just do it!
Thanks Be-mag for this article! Thanks to my sponsors: Razors, MadPowder Clothing, Circolo wheels, Ground Control and Jug!
Check out some more of Yuri's blading here:
Yuri-Fishbrain-David Montes Aldea.jpg
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