Category Archives: News

Bowl A Rama, Bondi Beach, Australia

Super proud of these four blokes! Aussie Pride, Until next year Bondi

Bowl-A-Rama 2018 was epic.  This year’s Bowl A Rama would be Embassy’s first gathering of the year, with a crew of 8 strong to invade the Aussie coast. We had a full week to prepare for the mayhem.  Collin Graham, Ronan Livingston, Ivan Federico, Pat Black & Jed Fuller all reported for duty, along with Embassy artist Shane Munce.  It’s a tough gig to go to Australia, and have to skate in a bowl on a beautiful historic beach.  The qualifier on Saturday was intense. To tap into the mind set of these godly talented people to unleash the greatness is fun to witness.  Jed Fuller studies the bowl, playing out his run, and lines in his head.  Pat Black on the other hand, doesn’t even know what the next wall has in store. I’ve always said Pat Black has “Nine Lives”.  In Bondi he used up all of them everyday.  There was a couple of runs were he should have literally died.  Hang up after hang up, he skated with gnarly reckless abandon we haven’t seen since the Zorlac/Alva, Craig Johnson day’s. The grom’s were stoked to see Pat’s style.   A beautiful Aussie model added to some Friday afternoon delight.  Collin, Ivan, Pat, and Jed all made it through the semi-finals on Saturday. It was a tuff cut.  Collin sneaked in by the thinnest of margins.  On Sunday Ivan Federico got broken off, and messed up his knee.  He’s off to Italy to get evaluated.  He’ll be ready for the Van’s Park Series in June, in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Collin on the other hand is off to New Castle to skate the ABC “Australian Bowlrider’s Championships”. All in all it was a rad trip.  We’re working on Australian distribution.  Look forward to having the Embassy brand  Down Under. Until next time Bondi, Cheers!

Collin Graham, Boneless, fresh off the plane
Jed Fuller, no jet lag required. photo: Lee Leal
Pat Black & Sasha Steinhorst
Ronan Livingston, made the trip to Bondi. photo: Lee Leal

This year Embassy artist Shane Munce was invited to join in the fun

Shane Munce got a dose of Bondi

The weather held up all week. Blazing down some rays that could fry an egg on the concrete.  Tuesday we had a home cooked feast.  Our airbnb came equipped with all the modern day gadgets.

Shane Munce played Embassy chef

The next few days would be full court press.  The guys were usually the first guys to the bowl every morning.  it was an Embassy/ Grom session.  I was really stoked on Marley Rae.

Marley Rae, brought the style from Newy. photo Lee Leal
Collin Graham, Dawn Patrol.  photo Lee Leal
The life expectancy of this occupation has to be limitless for Pat Black
Somebody give this guy some water!
Ronan Livingston
Ivan Federico got to Bondi with a huge smile, and ready to kill it.
Ivan Federico. Italian assault on an Australian Beach
I had booked an Embassy Sweets shoot with Dolly Diamond. Just some good Aussie Fun!
The guys and Dolly
Fun shoot with Dolly Diamond
Pat Black with a Texas Plant on the beach!
Jed Fuller with his Gladiator gear on!
Pat Black, Frontside tucknee air on the face wall.
Good to see some friendly faces in the crowd!
Ivan Federico messed up his knee, during his heat. His headed back to Italy to see his doctors
Pat Black & Shane Munce
Jed Fuller on contest day. All he could say in his sleep was ” Just stay on, just stay on” and he did!
Ivan Federico, Boneless in the corner!
The Embassy Pride, Jed Fuller, Ivan Federico, Collin Graham, Pat Black, Shane Munce, and myself (Lee Leal). Until next time Bondi!



Vans Park Series, Huntington Beach, CA

Ivan adding some style to a cloudy day.
Collin, killed it 1 hour off the plane.
It was that time again for the US Open, Vans Park Series in Huntington Beach. Embassy just needed an excuse to make this outing a family affair.

Ivan Federico spins a 540 during his run.

Collin Graham and Ivan Federico would be on the front line for this gig. Both of them would be displaying new graphics by Shane Munce. Ivan was on a natural high and stoked to have his personal “Signature Pro” model. He charged it hard every session. Same for the “Beast from the East” Collin Graham. Collin skated hard, rode the whole park the way it was built to be skated.

Nose grind on the extension

A lot of fun happenings went down. It was a week of skating everyday, getting in some time in the water, finding that DIY spot in HB (Thanks Jim Gray, Fish).
Tuck Knee FS air to the highest degree! Bamboo bowl

Pat Black, Bamboo Bowl,

Shane Munce was able to make the trip to the west coast. Luckily for him he didn’t bring his tattoo gear, cause he he would have stayed busy.
Shane Munce & Ivan Federico, chilling at the pad.

Over all it was a fun time for all. Dave Reul payed a visit to the place everyday. It was rad being the house behind “Sancho’s Taco’s”. We’ve always been a fan of the “Van’s”!!
View form the Airbnb!! So close to the pier!

Layback Beer is Officially on the West Coast.

Dave Reul always holding it down!! HB Pride!

Ivan Federico & Dave Duncan

Sand Sculpture was SICK

Ivan Federico, Pat Black & Collin Graham

Ivan Federico, tucks’s that sucker!

Collin Graham, fs tail grab over the hip

Collin & Ivan have some fancy new graphics.

Federico, with some Asian presuasion

We’d like to thank everybody who contributed to the stoke. Huge props to Van’s for putting on a rad party, especially Kristi. Thanks to Joaquin, The Federico’s, Jim Gray, Fish, Reuler, GiGi, The Embassy family, Airbnb, EVERYBODY.

Florida Bowl Riders 40th Anniversary of Kona Skatepark

This year marked the 40th anniversary of the infamous Kona Skatepark in Jacksonville FLorida. The Ramos family has upheld the culture of this beautiful skaters playground. From the classic historic downhill snakerun, to the Bowl, vert ramp, the classic vertical tombstone, to just about everything that has to do with Kona. It was a weekend of mayhem, music, art, skate, legends, legends and more legends. Steve Van Doren was on hand to give away a ton of FREE Van’s stuff. The “Pro” Bowl Final was the most intense 15 minutes in skateboarding, I’ve witnessed in a few years. It was a Skate of the Art Weekend. Below are a few pics of the Embassy Posse, adding to the STOKE. Look forward to next year!

Embassy Booth made it to Florida
Zorlac Collection
Collin Graham, boneless off the Tombstone

Ivan Rodriguez makes the trip to Kona. Mr. Hesh killed the Kona bowl, until he screwed up his knee.

Nathan Midgette at Kona Skatepark
Collin Graham, brought his warrior attitude to the bowl.
Dave Duncan in the Master’s division of the Kona Bowl Riders, 40th Anniversary Party
Nathan Midgette, proper fs tuck knee air!

Ronnie O’Neal gets in the mix

Van’s Park Series is a wrap.

It’s taken us to 4 Continents. It’s been a worldwide adventure through the highways and by-ways of Australia, Brazil, United States, and finally Europe. The journey on this inaugural Van’s park series started in Melbourne, Australia, 4 months ago. Embassy’s “Beast from the East” Collin Graham visited Oz for the 2nd time in less than a month, to compete in the 1st round of the Van’s Qualifier. Five challengers made the cut to earn a chance to skate in the Semi-finals alongside the 15 Van’s selected Pro’s. Only 20 skaters would be in the semi’s at each stop. Judging was based on “overall impression” which meant MAKE IT LOOK GOOD! Mix up your runs. Don’t start from the same place every time, don’t keep trying the same ole’ run every time, get creative. That’s exactly what Collin did at every stop, he made it look good; tweaking his airs higher than most, using every inch of the park and obstacles, skating fast, putting an exclamation mark on a speed thrills attitude. He skated with total style that captivated the crowd everywhere he went. He made it to the semi’s at every stop, (Except Hasting, Canada, which he had to cancel last minute). Melbourne was the testing ground for the first qualifier held at St Kilda Skatepark. The park was designed by Ozzie legend Renton Miller. It had the Dragon extension that would serve it’s purpose.
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Collin, Boneless one of the Dragon Extension

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Twilight fun in Melbourne!

The qualifier was intense, filled with “Thrills & Spills’. Alex Sorgente cracked his coconut and had to get some staples but joined the contest on Saturday. The Finals were a battle between Pedro Barros & Chris Russell. Chris won the Finals on his 3rd run. The format there was best run counts. You could blow your wad in the 1st 3 runs and bring it home on the 4th. Melbourne was a great time!
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Pedro Barros is in No Holds Barred, Full Throttle, 100 miles an hour, in your face AGGRO ZONE!

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Chris was on point all day!

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Chris Russell takes the 1st stop of the Van’s Park Series

Next stop was Florianopolis, Brazil, home of the infamous “RTMF” crew. This place is always Paradise Wonderland for the skate culture. We didn’t waste anytime and headed to the park straight from the plane. Todd Prince signed up to be part of the posse, so we were in for some good fun.

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straight off the plane! Floripa, Brazil!

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Our Airbnb was the bomb!

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Not a bad deal, 3 bedroom, 2 bath, outside chill area. And a freezer with lots of room for the ICE COLD BEER!

This part of the tour would be the Pedro Barros show! No Shit, I’m not just saying that because some gnarly hood rat Brazilian behind an ally told me to. PEDRO killed it. The home crowd was louder than any contest I’d been to since the early days of S.U.A.S (Shut up and Skate) during the ’80’s. Pedro claimed the home honors on this leg of the tour.

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Pedro was not to be denied on this day!

The Barros clan rules these lands. You can’t go 2 blocks without seeing a Layback Beer ad, or poster, or a picture of Pedro, Felipe, Vi or Murilo repping the brand. The RTMF vibe was the sickest and most positive vibe towards the brotherhood, but take note the Brazilian’s don’t fuck around. You come here you better respect the land, the culture, the people, or you might end up like… well, that’s another story!! After it was all said and done – Italian, Ivan Federico, and American, Kevin Kowalski, joined Pedro on the podium.

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Andre Barros and Steve Van Doreen

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The Brazilian podium Ivan Federico 2nd, Kevin Kowalski 3rd and Pedro Barros 1st

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The Layback Beer Mobile

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Our friends from the Hi Adventure

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Andre Barros adds to the stoke!

Monday was a day to go checkout Pedro’s bowl at the compound.
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Collin, Boneless on some RTMF crete!!!

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Todd Prince with Pedro after the win!!!

The 3rd stop of the tour was a scratch for us, due to unfriendly Canadian rules. Having missed the Hasting’s contest, we were almost sure that the World Championships in Sweden would be impossible to reach. However, onward through the fog to the annual Van’s US Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach, California we went. This place was a zoo. 104 selected skaters from all over the world competed to qualify for 8 spots in the semi’s. Embassy had a posse from Texas on hand for this gathering. Ben Johnson, Zach Castillo & Jake Kirby, joined Collin on this one. We also had Embassy Artist Shane Munce on hand to enjoy in the fun!

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On the way to the qualifier at Huntington with Shane Munce,

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Ben Johnson made the trip to Cali!

Zach Castillo turned out to be a crowd favorite. Zach killed it with his array of lip tricks taking them to revert and his smooth, buttery Madonna’s. His custom grip tape was classic! He impressed all at hand, and kept the Texas Renegade spirit alive and to true form.
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Zach Castillo

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Jake Kirby has been a Texas transplant to Cali, and was stoked to get in the mix, TEXAS PROUD!

Collin qualified 5th. In the Semi’s, he missed the cut by one, finishing 9th for the 2nd contest in a row.
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Collin was truly a crowd favorite, he went higher, and tweaked his arsenal with an urban assault!

After all was said and done – after 8 hours of world class skateboarding, Chris Russell stood on top of the podium to claim his 2nd win of the tour!

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Chris Muscle from the real HB, Hermosa Beach

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Huntington Podium, Oski, Hatchell & Chris


Collin never made it to the finals, but earned enough points for a trip to Malmo Sweden for the first ever Van’s Park Series World Championships. Sweden was sure to be a trip for the ages, billed as the Park World Championships. The top 20 bowl riders, on the raddest park terrain in the world – Grant Taylor, Ronnie Sandavol, Pedro Barros, Alex Sorgente, Chris Muscle, Kevin Kowalski, Ben Hatchell, Greyson Fletcher, all of them. After all was said and done, a .032 separated Collin and Ivan Federico, 8th & 9th place. Ivan went on to kill it in the finals, earning a spot on the podium behind Brazilian charger, and favorite Pedro Barros. The World Champion was none other than our good friend from Florida via Italy, Alex Sorgente. The skating he displayed during his 45 second run was one for the ages. 20 years from now, they’ll still be talking about it. Congrats to EVERYBODY that contributed. Big Texas shout out to Van’s for doing such an amazing job and The Boardr for keeping it all in check, and KEEPING IT FUN.

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Collin was just STOKED to be in such select company!

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Chris Russell killed, barely missing the cut!

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Todd Prince, Marley & GiGi. Embassy crew in Copenhagen, Denmark!

The first ever Van’s Park Series World Champion is Alex Sorgente. He killed all day, Qualifying 1st, and keeping that momentum into the finals to slay the rest of the field. Couldn’t happen to a better, cooler guy. He’s been skating since he could walk. CONGRATS ALEX!!
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Collin Sunday session at Sibbarp Skatepark, Malmo, Sweden

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Nose grind off some chucky shit!

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Collin, Front Blunt, Malmo!

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Old Guys Club! I had to take a selfie with Todd

Special thanks to Steve Van Doren, the ambassador of FUN!!! Looking forward to next year!!
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SIDE BAR NOTE: Contest scoring is subjective to what the judges are looking for on that day. We here at Embassy Skateboards are very proud of Collin Graham and all the effort he put forward to show the world he belongs on one of its biggest stages. Missing the cut by ONE (9th place), at 3 contest this year only gives him more motivation. And we’re not all about contest either. WE’RE ABOUT HAVING FUN. Whether it’s a backyard pool session with 4-5 friends, having a speed line down a rad 14 story parking garage, or finding and sweeping out a fun skate-able ditch, it’s all about the stoke. The Coastal Edge / Van’s East coast Surfing Championships in Virginia Beach this week will feature a vert demo on the beach. Embassy fork crew shredders will be entertaining the crowd. Henry Gutierrez, Collin, Nathan Midgette, and Ronan Livingston will be on hand along with the Van’s Vert Nobles. After VB, it’s on to San Jose, California for the annual World Cup Skateboarding Tim Brauch Memorial, where “Double D” Dave Duncan will be calling the Thrills & Spills. A slew of the Texas Posse will be making the trip as well. Expect Ben Johnson, Zach Castillo and Gary Morris to join the Nor Cal chapter with the Folsom’s and Pat Black. Fun stuff on the radar keeps the PMA switch activated. Embassy Proud

Lee Leal