INTERVIEW BY CHRISTIAN HOSOI
Fearless he rides; that’s Evan Doherty. He’s a 9-year-old ripper with a heart of gold and an appetite for fun that goes from the street to the top of the Mega Ramp. Here’s Big E.
What’s up, Evan? What have you been up to?
How tall are you?
I’m 4’ 3”.
What did you eat for dinner?
Mac and cheese.
That’s what I’m talking about. [Laughs] What tricks are you working on?
I’m working on getting better at my Christ airs.
That’s killer. Are you getting them down?
I started landing them last night.
That’s awesome. So what got you into skateboarding?
I got into skateboarding just watching other skaters skating by. It looked cool.
Wow. You just saw a skateboarder skating by, and you said, “You know what, I want to do that?”
Yeah, it looked really cool.
Do you have any brothers and sisters?
I have one big sister, Emma. She’s 11.
Did she get into skateboarding at all?
She has skated, but she’s not really doing it anymore.
When did you first step on a skateboard?
I was four and a half when I first got on a skateboard. That’s when I got a board.
What did you start skating?
Did you have a skatepark or did you just skate in front of your house?
I went to a skatepark after school.
What was the name of the skatepark?
What was the first trick you ever learned?
Going down a ramp.
When did you actually start doing more tricks?
I started getting more tricks when I was five and a half.
What tricks were you doing at five and a half?
Dropping in and going over humps switch.
[Laughs] You were already skating switch?
Yeah. When I was six, I started doing acid drops off ledges.
Were you doing acid drops into the ramp, too?
When did you start really skating bigger ramps?
I was seven and a half.
How big was that ramp that you started skating?
What tricks were you doing?
I was doing early grab backside airs at coping level.
Wow. When’s your birthday?
My birthday is February 5th, 2003.
So you’re nine now.
At seven and a half, you started skating vert and you were doing early grab backside airs coping high. When did you start skating vert ramps?
I started skating a vert ramp last April. That’s when dad built a ramp at our house.
So you’ve been skating vert for about a year?
Wow. That’s amazing. I’ve watched your evolution and how you’ve progressed in skateboarding. I remember seeing a YouTube clip of you doing 540s and then we heard about the huge 720. Did you think you were going to do 540s right away?
I didn’t think I was going to land it, but I was going to try it.
When you started doing backside airs above the coping, were you thinking, “Oh, I’m going to try a 540 next.” Or were you thinking, “Oh, I’ll learn a rock n’ roll and some other tricks first?”
I wanted to learn other tricks before the 540.
How did your tricks go in a row that you learned on the vert ramp? Take me through the tricks that you learned in a row from first to last.
First one was the backside air and then it was rock to fakie, rock ‘n roll, gay twist.
Wow. Blunt. You’re advancing very quickly, huh? Rock to fakie to gay twist on vert. [Laughs] Keep going.
Then it was 50-50s, 5-0s, blunt to fakies and then 540s.
[Laughs] Let’s add that up. You learned the backside air, rock to fakie, 50-50, 5-0, rock to fakie, gay twist, and blunt to fakie. That’s seven. What did you learn after the blunt to fakie?
Then it was air to fakie.
And then you landed the 540.
[Laughs] That’s pretty amazing, Evan. How many months did it take to land the 540 from when you started in April?
[Laughs] It took me a long time to learn a lot of those tricks and for you to learn them all in three months, wow. Some of those I can’t even do, like the blunt to fakie. I’ve never even done a blunt to fakie. That’s incredible. After you landed the 540, how long did it take you to get it to where you could do two in a row and, eventually, nine in a row? Did it take a lot of practice to be able to do that or was it just naturally easy for you to do?
It took a lot of practice for me to do it.
After you started getting the 540s wired, did you automatically think, “I’m going for the 720?”
Yeah, I just went step by step.
How long did it take you to learn that one?
It took a month and a half.
One trick took you a month and a half. That took a long time, huh?
[Laughs] Now that you got that one wired, have you thought of the 900?
I’ve been up to the Mega Ramp for a third time, and I learned 540’s there and then when time was almost up – I went for the 900 a few times. On my last try, I got the full rotation with my feet mostly on the board. I’m close. I just ran out of time.
I know you’re going to be making it. What was the MegaRamp like when you first got there and saw it? Were you kind of scared?
I felt a little scared at first and then I got used to it.
How did you get over that feeling of being scared and then finally just go for it?
I just kept skating it more and more.
How long did it take you to go for it from the top?
It took me a day and a half.
Did you skate it for hours, just the quarter pipe at first?
Yeah, I went from the quarterpipe to the drop in.
What was the jump like because I’ve looked at it and it scares the lights out of me. I can’t even go down that ramp to hit the jump because you’re going so fast. I’m intimidated by the speed. Did it feel like it was going fast or were you feeling comfortable after you started launching the jump?
It felt really fast. That first try I was scared, but after that I kept getting better. I was just getting more and more excited to do it.
How many days did it take until you finally made one?
After you made it one time, did you do it again?
I did it two more times.
So you did three full pulls. How high of an air did you do on the quarter pipe?
It was close to ten feet.
Wow. So you’re nine years old doing the MegaRamp, clearing the 50-foot gap and then doing a nine-foot air on a quarter pipe that’s 27 ½-feet tall. How did you feel after you landed it?
It felt amazingly good. I was excited. It felt amazing. [Laughs]