This week team manager Jason Wilson had the opportunity to interview team rider Gerardo Valencia after winning the 2021 United Skim Tour. He is our first World Champion at Zap Skimboards and the first skimboarder from Mexico to win the United Skim Tour and Skim USA tour! At the age of 26 Gerardo is achieving his goals and ready for more!
JW: How does it feel to win the 2021 United Skim Tour and the Skim USA Tour? What an achievement!
GV: I never thought of winning both at the same time but it was more than I expected. My dream came true and I am shocked! I made it !!!! I am finally a world champion! I always had a phrase in my mind from Muhammad Ali "suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion".
JW: Was this a long time goal of yours?
GV: For 5 years I set out to be world champion. This was the second time that I participated in the entire tour.
JW: To what do you attribute your success this year?
GV: Hard work and a lot of discipline. Exercise, eating healthy, less internet and more action. That worked a lot for me.
JW: Do you have a contest routine before and/or during?
GV: Warm up, stretch muscles, and deep breaths. Before and after.
JW: What was the hardest part of becoming champion?
GV: Not seeing my friends and family during the process! But they always supported me from afar.
JW: Who is your biggest competition?
GV: I think this season it was Blair. He eliminated me in two semifinals in California. Much respect to him. Blair is very good and talented. He motivates me to work triple hard for next year.
JW: What do you think of the priority rules that have been implemented in the competition in recent years?
GV: Sounds good to me for those who wait for their turn and their wave and take their time.
JW: What is the best part of skimming in competition?
GV: I love competing because it makes you feel alive when you're there ready to put on the show. Many nerves and emotions in a weekend! Ready to do your best.
JW: Is there anything you don't like about competing?
GV: I like everything! Bad things, good things. I learned not to make excuses and give my best no matter what.
JW: What was your most memorable moment on the tour this year?
GV: Each and every tournament is tattooed in my memory. But when I went to California and they gave me the news that I was a world champion, it was the moment I had waited for years! The most precious weekend of my life!
JW: What is your favorite contest to attend?
GV: Honestly, my favorites are Oktoberfest in California and the Zap Pro/Am in Delaware.
JW: Which amateur riders impress you the most?
GV: Eoin Lally from Delaware is one of the ones I looked at at the beginning of the tour and he is a very personable and talented person.
JW: What is your next goal?
GV: I want to go to compete in Europe and other parts of the world that I do not know. Also train like Brad Domke and Lucas Fink on those big waves! And a few more in mind.
JW: Is there someone you would like to thank? Shout Outs?
GV: Honestly, my friends, family and sponsors were instrumental in making this possible. Especially my Zap family because I could not do the whole tour without them. I am very grateful to them! Now I am the first in the Zap family to be a World Champion. Thanks for trusting me guys.