Featured young riders of the month: Taco van Winkoop & Deen Mondt

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Our featured young riders are two young dutch downhill enthusiasts: Deen and Taco. They tell us about the local scene, working in Europe’s favourite skateshop and speed wobbles! Enjoy

Hey guys, where are you from?
Deen: I’m from Heiloo, it is a little village near Alkmaar
Taco: I’m from Amsterdam a bigger city than Heiloo

Where do you skate?
Taco: All over Amsterdam, if I’m going out sliding I go to Nieuw Sloten, a little steep hill where you can do big standies. When I go dancing (I kinda suck at it), I go to the Vondel Park.

Deen: You fail at dancing, just stick to sliding dude.

Deen: All over really, I’ve got one spot in particular, a wide smooth asphalt parking spot. Super nice for dancing and tricks, with almost no cars. For sliding we’ve got a little viaduct over the highway. It’s way too slow but it is all we’ve got, and with friends it is always good because the KFC is not far away.

When did you start skating?
Taco: March three years ago on a crappy Santa Cruz, a month later I bought an Original, and two months later they both got stolen in the Albert Cuyp Market. After then it went all uphill (downhill actually), got downhill boards and stuff so I started feeling like a badass.

Deen: When I was 9 years old I started skateboarding, still skateboard regularly. When a friend bought an Original 2 years ago I got my first Tan Tien, I love that board! From there on out I started rolling.  I started downhill, went to Austria, got more stoke for downhill and sliding, met Taco in Scheveningen and my first real freerides were Wallonhill and KNK.

How old are you?
Deen: 16, 16.5 I think actually

Taco: 15 but I feel 20 and people see me as 9

Haha how do you know what it feels like to be 20?
Deen: Almost a year ago Taco and I were just as tall, now Taco is way bigger.

Taco: This is actually my second life, I used to be Alexander the Great.

Now you’re Taco the Terrible!
Deen: Haha, yeah Taco is indeed terrible, terrible at eating.

Taco: Thanks man.

You guys skate together?
Deen: If I’m in Amsterdam, yes. Mostly Sloten or at the bridge in front of his house. If we have nothing to do at Sick we sometimes go skating.

Taco: Yeah our skate session are really weird, and we like to keep our helmets on when we are on train going to Sick because SAFETY’S FIRST.

Deen: Dude… lol, Taco is a little bit gay most of the times.

That’s why you love him Deen?
Hey wow, slow down. I’m not gay! Lets get that one clear ok?

What did you mean if you’ve got nothing to do at Sick?
Deen: Well… ehm, most of the times it’s really busy. But there is always time to skate, always.

Taco: I do all the work when we work on saturday, he’s mostly chilling with Lisa.

Deen: It happened before that I got a little hungover, and hangovers need to be skated away, otherwise they will annoy you all day long. Yeah that what Taco says.

You guys work in the same shop?
Deen: Yeah Sickboards, the coolest shop in the world.

Taco: Spam

What do you do there?
Deen: Skate and chill, oh and yeah we do some orders from the shop.

Taco: We help customers with their choice and put their boards together.

How long have you worked there?
Deen: Lately not much, got a lot to do for school. but I think for a little year now. Got in there via Taco.

Taco: I did an internship in February last year, and went working in vacations after that. I work there every saturday now. So if people want to see me in real life they can.

Aww that’s nice. You guys are like best buddies
Deen: Yeah man, we share our undies with each other

Taco: Yeah man you still got my bjorn borg.

What do you ride?
Deen: I just got the new prototype from Xtensionboards. The builder next to Sickboards. It’s awesome, that is my trick, dance board. I ride Rusty Bears and bearing under it with O’tangs Stims 80a. For downhill I use the Rayne Isis. I can’t ride a downhill board without a little drop I think, I really love that. I got some Surf Rodz and Nersh under there. Oh and don’t forget the Getto fristie grip tape Taco!!

Taco: I ride my Comet Grease Shark with Calibers all classic thane Abecs and some Vicious 3d concave, the board is kinda fucked up but I love it t0o much. I also got a John Barnett with Calibers and yellow stims, I’m the only dutch downhiller without Precision trucks, I’ve got 1 Aera Hanger but that doesn’t count. I just love pink grip and then rip it off instead of using a Stanley knife.

You ride for Xtension boards?
Deen: No not really, we’ve got their boards at sick, I’m just testing their board now really. Xtension Boards is one of the bigger board builders in the Netherlands. It has got a shop right next to Sickboards and were making our own sick-xtension board now, its going to be “A to the WESOME”

Why do you have 1 aera hanger?
Taco : Just to show off, and because I didn’t have enough money for 2 hangers a 2 base plates so I just have 1.

I thought Holland was flat! What use do you have for them?
Deen: We’ve got those things called “legs” and actually use them.

Taco: I don’t use my legs I just stand on my board waiting for the wind. Or we go to Arnhem or do trips to Germany, France and Belgium.

Deen: Most of the time Taco is like: “dude, I don’t have to skate, I can just stand here and look sexy”

ALL dutch downhillers ride Precisions?  
Deen: True story, but I also ride Bear and Randall, just for downhill I think it is nice and responsive, I got super slop in my Bears nowadays.

Taco: I’m not that good at math but by my calculations there are about a thousand minus 950 dutch downhillers.

You guys go on many hill hunting trips outside Holland?
Deen: Yes, we have a facebook group called “Hardcore Dutch Downhillers”. It’s funny because for such a flat country we’ve got a pretty big downhill scene. Most of the time we go to Belgium, we skated with the guys from Blutcher in Liege one time, that was awesome.

Taco: You said it all Deen.

So you’ll be at Houyet?
Taco: Oh hell yeah we will be there and we will skate hard and I’m SUPER EXCITED!

Deen: Can’t motherf*cking wait, stoked to the max.

First time?
Deen: Second for me, first time was awesome. I met a lot of people there who I’m going to skate with this year.

Taco: Also my second time, maybe this year Deen will be as fast as me because he finally improved his crappy tuck.

Deen: Dude I improved that way back at Liege I was faster than you, and I didn’t wobble like a pussy, unlike you.

Taco: I wobbled on purpose and the only time you were in front of me was when I let you in front.

Do you guys compete in the dutch downhill championship?
Deen: Do we have a downhill championship in Holland? Awesome. We’ve probably got to build a hill in order to do that, one with a lot of fast LEFT turns, that is toeside for Taco so that I’m faster.

Taco: Does that even exists? ‘’nou breekt mijn klomp!” I got my toeside standies nailed so I’m not worrying.

I was assuming you guys did. Otherwise how do you 50 hardcore dutch downhillers amuse yourselves?
Deen: With crappy hills and slow speeds At least the pavement is good in holland. we’ve got one hill near utrecht where we can hit 70 if  Taco and I try really hard but there is a chance that the police are shutting that down. So we only have a long straight and no turns.

Taco: In the bathroom and on on the hill.

Deen: Yeah sometimes I just go stand in front of the mirror on my board and imagine I’m racing downhill, than I awake and remember that I’m in my room. Otherwise I cry myself into sleep.

How have your parents reacted to your decision to longboard?
Deen: They helped me a lot, with supporting and stuff. They rode me to Slovenia last season for KNK. That was really awesome. After that we went to Switzerland and I attended a freeride called “Giosteka” that was cool but it was wet for the first 2 days and on the 3rd day it was snowing so we didn’t skate.
Oh yeah, my dad drove me to Wallon Hill, he partied like a badass (nah that was a joke) he hated those French idiots that were partying until 4am and shooting fireworks. I slept right true that luckily, he didn’t.

Taco: Pretty cool actually, my mom wants my safety first, and my dad knows shit about bushings and stuff. They are passionate bikers and went to the French Alps, the Col de Madeleine to be exact, they biked up in the morning and I skated down in the afternoon, damn that hill is dreamy. My mom also drove me to Wallonhill, that was pretty cool of her.

Do you guys skate competitively?
Deen: Yeah, against each other. This season I am planning on doing a lot of races, maybe even the whole IGSA Euro tour. This year is my exam year, so I’m nearly done with school. Hopefully that allows me to skate a whole lot more.

Taco: I really love skating competitively I cheat a lot by pulling, but I don’t really care and I’m also planning on doing the whole IGSA Euro tour.

See you guys at Bo Peep? 
Deen: Yeah maybe, going to UK looks awesome to me. Who knows I can work something out, nothing is impossible.

Taco: I really hope so!

How was last season for you?  
Deen: I learned a whole lot of new stuff, it was awesome. I’ve never been skating so hard but I think this season will top last year anyway, I hope so. Oh yeah, we made some nice fat thane lines together.

Taco: It was awesome but I couldn’t go to awesome events like Deen, but let’s just say the thane was flowing. I learned to slide really fast without falling, switch checks, backside speed checks and stuff like that. I just went to Wallonhill.

What were the highlights of your season?
Deen: The race at KNK, I raced with Samy and Yvon, got through 3 heats, flew off my board, flew away from the adrenaline. It was awesome.

Taco: Col de Madeleine or Wallonhill, I’m not sure.

What are your plans for this season?
Deen: Race as much as I can, skate as much as I can. Hopefully a big part of the IGSA Euro Tour. Other small freeride races and travel to the most awesome roads Europe has to offer.

Taco: The whole IGSA Euro Tour and some freerides in between the races and just to do a lot of skating go to different countries meet people and skate with them, and meet some of those open minded girls at Kozakov Yvon was talking about in Greener Pastures.

Haha Taco you’re only 15, those girls will go to jail if they look at you!
Yvon meant good at skating when he said open minded right, not anything else?

Do you have a local crew?
Deen: Yeah, but Taco is trying to get in but we don’t want to (Secretly he’s way too good, if we let him in, he’s only going to get better.) He’s really annoying you know. It mostly consists of the hardcore downhillers and the Sick crew if we’re talking about the downhillers. For the dancers it’s like one big family. In Hague there is a really big dance scene, every thursday night.

Taco: I’m speechless

You’re into dancing?
Deen: A little bit, you have to if you live in the Netherlands. We can’t downhill all the time, no matter how much we would love to. Although I’m more  into flip tricks and grabs. I think that is because of my skating background.

Taco: True story bro, I can do one foot manuals in to normal manuals no complys and g-turns, and if I repeat that, a lot people may think I can dance but I actually suck at it.

Video or it didn’t happen!
Taco: We are making a video and it is going to be awesome, I hope.

Deen: Videos are coming.

Anything else?
Taco: My hair is brown and I wear socks while sleeping.

Deen: I like to wear yellow socks, I really love pizza and I don’t have a girlfriend at the moment….

Taco: Me neither, my dog is way out of my league hahaha.

You don’t need girlfriends… you have each other and your boards (and Lisa)
Deen: Haha yeah Lisa Karina is our second mother

Taco: And Martijn Schrama our second father.

What do you guys do when you’re not skating
Taco: Sleeping eating and wearing a helmet.

Deen: Sleeping or eating, but when are we not skating??

Choose 3 numbers between 1-24
Taco: 5,78(make it 6)-16-20.

Deen: Dammit, 28 is my lucky number. 4, 18, 11

Taco: What 5,78 is my lucky number…

4 – Whos is the best person you’ve seen skating ?
Deen: Kyle Chin I think, he’s got style.

18- What is/was your favourite Cartoon?
Deen: Lucky Luke

11 – What’s your favourite sandwich filling ?
Deen: Way too much to enumerate, let’s just say everything you find in a good filled fridge.

16 – Do you have a blog/twitter?
Taco:I have Twitter but I only used it once, my name was @Tacolicious, pretty crappy name.

Deen: Haha that’s the worst name for a Twitter account ever.

6 – Do you like lemons ?
Taco: Yeah I actually love lemons especially the part when you bite in them and your teeth hurt.

20- If every job paid the same amount, what would you do?
Taco: Work at Mcdonalds

Deen: Yepp you’re retarded.

Haha!! You guys are crazy, I had fun talking to you guys! Come say hi when you come to Bo Peep, I’ll give you some non-alcoholic beers 
Taco: Sounds good and it was nice to do the interview!

Deen: Great, it was fun talking with you.

Do you have any thankyous?
Deen: I would like to thank you for this interview, it was very pleasant. I hope we meet again sometime. My dog was very helpful and I would like to thank her for that. My mom and dad for spending so much time on me and supporting me. Not to forget www.sickboards.nl for all the stoke and great times. I would also like to thank Taco for the great times we had. Dude, thanks, but you’re still gay.

Taco: I want to thank to Sickboards for all their support so far and I want to thank you for letting me be myself. And a big shout out to my mom and dad HEEEEEEEEY
Thanks Deen, we have a saying in Holland: what you say, you are, enough said.