Marcos Costa, inhabitant of the magical Island, home of one of the world’s favourite skatehouses, a favourite face on the European race circuit, owner of cats and stoker of Greener Pastures. Learn more about this stoked man.
Hola Marcos, how are you?
Hello my friend, fine thanks and you?
Great. Having a fun week?
Yes man, very good days skating DH and surfing with my friends.
Where are you from?
I’m from Uruguay but I have double nationality: Uruguay and Spain.
How did you get into skateboarding?
I started skating because there was basically there weren’t always waves but the roads were always there. My nephew, Andres Varietti (10 years younger) introduced me to it and started this great adventure. I remember my first s9 pintail, 20 years ago in Uruguay. Not many people skated at the time,
What city in Uruguay?
I’m from Las Piedras, a small city of 100,000 people..
What did you enjoy about skating in those days?
I remember rad times with my brothers skating; skating the highway without cars at 2am! Weekends spent downhilling and surfing in Punta Ballena. Good times with no intention but having fun!
“My favourite part (of DH) is when I start to loosen up and leave everything behind and there is only the present moment on my board. In that moment, I am alive. ”
What’s your favourite thing about riding down hills?
My favourite part is when I start to loosen up and leave everything behind and there is only the present moment on my board. In that moment, I am alive. I will not give up that feeling for anything in this world.
Is surfing your bigger passion?
It’s 50% – 50%. Downhill longboard is like a big wave, so it takes mental control. Different passion, different vibe.
When did the community start to grow?
I think in 2009 with Andres Varietti, Nicolas Gastelumendy and Matias Machado. But by then, I was living here in Tenerife and they got in contact using by yahoo cam messenger to see my tuck and other things and after they really begun with DH, using gloves and helmets, sliding and faster tuck.
Why did you move to Spain?
To see another life. Here I can practice DH longboards every day. Many hills, waves and 20 degrees every day in the euro zone!
Was Tenerife as nice as you dreamt?
Yes, with a lot of long ways and beautiful places and forests. I saw Tenerife on the internet, very beautiful place. My first impression when I left the plane is that ”everywhere is a dessert”, but that’s because it was the south. When I visited all the islands, I knew I wanted this island to become my base point.
What is your favourite thing about Tenerife?
I really don’t have a favourite part, there is so much to choose from that I could not decide, the island on all sides is fantastic.
Who was skating on the island when you got there?
When I arrived on the island in 2003, I was skating alone in a road called La Martela. A good road of 12 km with very nice curves and beautiful scenery. After that, in December, 2008, some guy Martin from Uruguay and Raul from Venesuela contacted me and told me that they were creating a new crew to skate on the island.
What did you name your crew?
Team Sliders Canarias.
Who are the other Sliders?
The first is Raul Torres then Daniel Abreu, Mark Lopez, Martin Diaz, Oscar Albarez, Julio Minaya and me!
Did skating in Uruguay prepare you for skating roads like La Martela?
No! I’ve never been in a place like this. La martela is like a DH paradise, 12 km and 250 corners! In my first run, I remember I crashed 3 times in different corners but continued skating in this magical place,
Haha WOW! How did you learn to have fun safely?
I remember learning in Uruguay to footbrake and had good experience slowing down. Back then, I did not skate with gloves and helmet, only winter cap and winter gloves.
Have you had any serious injuries?
Yes, with a car in 2010 after Almabtrieb. One week here with Kevin Reimer and James Kelly skating in La Martela and in the big right corner, a car was coming up and I hit the car’s tyre, bad moments! I broke my left foot.
La martela is your favourite road in the world?
No, but it’s one of the best routes for DH chilling and pack riding with friends. It’s good for different levels, that’s what makes it special.
How did Team Sliders Canarias change skating for you?
It was a great experience to start skating in groups with more guys since I was used to doing it alone. They immediately started motivating the group and with new initiatives to travel to some races and more events in Europe.
What’s the difference between skating alone or in a group?
More motivation. Always having good friends around is very good for skating, I also enjoy myself skating, following my friends’ lines.
When did you first skate outside your island?
The first time was at the 2009 Peyragudes world championship, the ancient version of the legendary race. It was a great experience.
What was the track like?
intense, jaja I remember witnessing some crashes that I would not like to experience lol.
How many rounds did you get through?
I did not qualify I remained at 71 or something, I did not have much experience.
Is the Island enough preparation for a big race?
Possibly. I had good friends to go faster, train a lot on the island and at races, it keeps me in the group of top 50 riders, it is a great place to skate.
What other events did you attend in 2009?
Peyragudes and local events on the island.
Are there many events on the island?
Every so often, we organize some local freerides but nothing serious.
How was 2010?
I started with a race in Malaga. Very fast descent (95 km/h), then I went to Almabtrieb which was my first race where I qualified with great racers like Scoot Scoot and other big riders. In October, Malaga again in Mijas Carrera the Campeones, highly technical local race where I learnt a lot.
Did you have fun in Germany?
I had a great experience. I loved Almabtrieb and the whole atmosphere of Germany – fun, lots of beer with good friends.
Do you enjoy racing?
I enjoy the atmosphere of the races but it’s really clear to me that the race is against myself. Races are where I can test my limits and I really like that.
What was the highlight of 2010?
Qualifying at Almatrieb. Also, winning some national races in Spain. After Almabtrieb I was fortunate to meet my friends Kevin Reimer and James Kelly who spent 10 days in Tenerife and explored the island, It was a great year.
Was that the first time you invited people to the island?
Nope. We already had some friends from Norway and other cold countries haha.
Haha winter! Who was the first?
The first I think my fast friend Jarle Jalla from Norway.
What did you get up to in 2011?
2011, I was stoked with my new sponsor FIBRETEC! I started to skate their boards and that changed everything. I also had a good year, winning two national races after that skating Italy Teolo world cup and Verdichio, two races that were not so fast but so technical, they taught me a lot.
How did it feel to get a big sponsor?
Very happy to have a board sponsor and be part of this big FIBRETEC family. Skating your boards is incredible and getting support till this day is a great encouragement for me to keep improving.
YOU NEVER CHANGED SPONSORS?
In these six years, no. Always FIBRETEC. Last year I also had the help of Carver brand, they have also contributed to a good year. They make skate, surf and some other products. I have been adding sponsors every year.
My sponsors now are; Fibretec, Crash Test Dummies Gloves, Rasclat Tenerife Specialized clothes, Mr Wilson sk8 shop and BarracudaBar, they help with all my new longboard projects.
I never had a wheel sponsor. My shop sponsor – shopsk8 gives me wheels. And many friends helped me with so much equipment to keep running. I ride with orangatang, venom, these, RAD and more materials. A wheels sponsor is my next dream.
How does sponsorship change skating?
Always good to have people help you to skate more without worrying about money for boards, wheels, clothes or material in general! Also having cash to have to travel and pay the bills every month.
Did you do much skating in 2012?
2012 was a great year and I had a little more experience. I went to skate 5 races in Czech republic, Switzerland, France, Italy and Portugal. Three world cups and two qualifyers, ended in the top 42 in the world this year and top 10 in Europe!
It was a good year and at the end we began a month’s shooting for GP:2 one more opportunity to skate more and more.
How was the 2013 season?
2013 began with working on the production of GP2 with Patrick for nearly two months on the island. It was intense an January and February in which we moved around the island looking for the best descents and natural spaces to film.
After completing the film, I took a few months to train in the island and travelling to other islands to rest and skate new roads. I also participated in the championship of Spain in the city of Obiedo, where I met new riders. For personal reasons that year, I wanted a break from international competition to devote a little more to the island.
How did you benefit from taking a break?
I needed to recover from old injuries of the body and my emotions. I really missed not seeing old friends this year, friends who normally I see year after year when I travel.
What is GP?
Greener pastures: Offshore. The film goes into 5 chapters in which different parts of the island where 10 international freeride riders skated different spots showing their different qualities. Every morning we hung out with two different groups of guys to shoot in different parts, it was a fun experience.
Has anything like this been done in Tenerife?
Never a project like this. In 2011, I worked with Arbor in La Gomera, but not like this! Greener patures is a big project
How did you get involved with the project?
Patrick knew what he was doing with Greener Pastures 1, also I knew he wanted to do the second part the following year and this was when I proposed in 2011 in Teolo to GP2 do on the island and so we started talking. We met again in Teolo in 2012 and one thing led to another.
What made the island perfect for Offshore?
The island is perfect for those who like to skate the best roads with buttery smooth pavement. Also the conditions that this was a great spot for filming were given.
Why was the location of ‘’the island’’ a secret?
One of the conditions for filming here at the beginning was to preserve the island’s location. There was never malice, just wanted the best for everyone.
How did the locals contribute to Offshore?
In my case, worked on the part of logistics as a driver and security, also in Chapter 1 – as a rider. For me I learnt how to work on a major project and gained more experience. For the other riders, it was also good because it was the way to get to see the world, as most do not have the opportunity to leave the island to skate.
Who else helped with taking care of the guys?
Security officers were two people, Martin Diaz and me. Patrick also acted as project manager was also attentive to our security needs.
What did it feel like to appear in a film like this?
The experience was very good. To be in a group of international skaters, and get out in a film that would be seen around the world showing serious positive vibes. Above all it was great to collaborate to the growth of the longboard scene.
What was your favourite thing about hosting these people on the island?
My favourite part was being able to continue to acquire knowledge and share new experiences skating with other skaters. All of GP 2 was exciting. In my case, it started from the 7 or 8 January when I got Patrick to the skate house from until nearly the end of February – full time of the project.
Is Tenerife good for partying?
Haha I do not really go out much, but it is a good place to enjoy day and night.
Since the release of GP, has anything changed for the skaters on the island?
I think many of them have spoken with some brands to have a new sponsor, and all continue to evolve.
Do you enjoy hosting people on the island?
Jaja I think this is a truly magical place in every way.
“…respect the natural environment and respect the locals skating there all year round and try not to get noticed when skating!”
Are there any rules for skaters visiting Tenerife?
The rules are like everywhere: respect the natural environment and respect the locals skating all year round here, try not to get noticed when skating at the meeting points, here as elsewhere is forbidden so we try maintain order, also we tried to help and care for visitors coming, for my part I am very happy to receive new riders to skate.
What did you get up to after GP?
Continued skating fast. For me, the basic thing is to give meaning to my life every day. What I hoped is that, through this project, perhaps the scene can knock on doors in different parts of the world and riders will be able to skate in any country. Members of the family of longboard are great. I opened the doors to the world and hope others will too.
How was 2014?
Began this year with training some international guys who came to the island to skate with me. After that, in April, raced in Belgium Eat Concrete 2014 then started to prepare for the euro-tour. This year, I travelled with a young Italian Matthew Corteletti and his father for a month, crossing one more time the mythical races Kozakov, Teolo then Peyragudes. It was a good year with good feelings and much skate. Came back to the island finally in August and began to organize the calendar of new guys who would come here to skate with me.
When are you going to skate in America/Canada?
Surely the next year is my year of Canadian and US races! I’ve always wanted to go and it will be fantastic to skate there. I’ll do the best I can with what my sponsor gave me.
Will your island ever host an IDF race?
Possibly, it will be a surprise, this in my plans.
What are your plans for the future?
Keep travelling and skating a lot, getting new and old friends to come and skate on the island. Working for my sponsor and recording in different places. I do not usually plan things a lot, I like my life to flow freely.
What do you do when you’re not skating?
When not skating… lately, I surf a lot. I usually live as a nomad, staying in different parts of the island to surf and skate. I like my quiet time with my truck, my guitar, my girl, my friends and staying on a beach to sleep. Basically, my life is simple, no frills needed to be happy.
Pick 3 numbers between 1-30.
9, 13, 26
9 – What song would you like played at your funeral?
Smells like teen spirit jaja yes.
13 – Do you have a pet ?
Yes! 2 cats, Blanquito Dormilon on Facebok haha y Negrita, his new girlfriend.
Leo! It’s been fun talking to you. This was a great conversation. See you somewhere!
It has been fun. I think I’ll miss not talking to you every afternoon. Hope to meet again one day on the hill.
Any last words?
Thanks to all who help me to continue skating and living my trip; my wife, my family, my friends, my sponsors, my fans. Really, thanks.
Instagram – @Marcosdhcosta
Fibretec dh boards
Hot Mountain skate house,
Crash test and dummies
Mr wilson sk8 shop
Barracuda bar El Medano