Before anything: Manolo’s Tapes went live with an incredible retrospective of all the Girl and Chocolate videos yesterday. We can talk about Keenan’s switch flip, or how ahead of its time each Koston part was, or all the crazy stuff Marc Johnson has done, but let’s talk about some real shit…Ben Sanchez.
A longtime personal favorite Chrome Ball post is the dual tribute to Ben “Burger Boy” Sanchez and Shamil Randle. For a pair of twenty-year-old companies, very few of their riders have been afforded the ability to fade into obscurity like those two, and nostalgic reminders of less prominent names are among the greatest joys of The Chrome Ball Incident.
If Richard Mulder, Mike York, Chico Brenes were the seventh, eighth and ninth guys off the bench, then Ben Sanchez was something like the twelfth. Not to sound like a broken record, but the era when Girl and Chocolate were a batch of the best skaters alive surrounded by dudes who were more style than pushing the envelope is the one we most frequently put on a pedestal. Those guys helped the videos feel more like skate videos, and less like blockbusters. Koston and Guy were there to show you how good skateboarding could possibly be. Mike York got you hyped to try some pretzel spin noseslide combo that inevitably ends with a tic-tac. Ben Sanchez, on the other hand, was the guy who made you remember, “Damn, I haven’t done a half cab noseslide in a while.”