Portrait by Jonathan Labez for Be-Mag
Introduction and Interview by John Sakkis
Do you smell it? Breath deep, right now in the Bay Area it smells like rain (18 trillion gallons in February alone), scorched redwoods, hypodermic needles, homeless encampments, sea salt wafting off the bay, and COMPS! That’s right, it’s in the air, blade competition season is upon us, I’m typing this on the eve of the second annual Filthy Fiesta taking place in SF (urine smells on point) at legendary skate spot 3rd & Army (don’t say “Cesar Chavez”). By the time you’ll be reading this FF 2 will be a foregone conclusion, what were here to talk about today is the Gold Comp.
After months of teasers you finally dropped the official Gold Comp announcement on Instagram today (2-12-19), for those not in the know, can you tell us a little about the competition?
Gold Comp is a park competition being held in San Jose, CA on April 27th at Stonegate Skatepark and was an idea I thought of this past summer as a way to help support the blading community.
I hope people have fun and feel the good vibes while watching some amazing blading.
The Bay Area has a super deep, rich culture of DIY comps, from legendary IMYTA battles to lower key (local) jam sesh comps like Filthy Fiesta, where does Gold Comp fit into that spectrum, from what I understand you tried to go the permitted route? how did you find that process?
With this being its first year it’s hard to compare Gold Comp to other Bay Area competitions. There is such a rich history of blading comps going down in this area it’s hard to say where it will fall, but I believe it will find its place. I hope this competition helps bring bladers from around the country together to showcase their talents and have a good time here in the Bay Area.
Haha… about that permit process… I did try to go that route, and would have liked to, but I quickly found the costs and red tape were not worth it this first time around. Maybe down the road, if it makes sense I will try again. I think having a permit could open the doors even more to the general public, so it’s definitely worth looking into.
Can you give me a brief rundown of the event schedule? I noticed on the announcement that there will be a kids division?
No problem! Blader registration is from 9-11 am PT the day of the competition. Kids compete at 11 am followed by the open adult competition at 12 pm. Kids compete for free and adults can for $25. One Luxury Brand will be sponsoring the kids competition.
Why Gold Comp, what does that name mean to you?
JG: Gold has a few meanings to me. It stands for empowerment, being bold and also helps set a “gold” standard for how I think bladers should get rewarded. The way I see it, gold sets the tone for what this comp is all about… It’s also part of my last name.