Check Out Check In With Kebbek Rider Raphaël Therrien
Kebbek Skateboards team rider Raphaël “Crafty Raf T” Therrien has been in the thick of skate and travel this past year, but has the right sense of how to make the most of his time at home in Quebec. We featured Raphael in print in issue 33 during his time across Canada with Coast Longboarding and then followed up with a raw run from his local hills back home.
Most Recently, Raphael has been over seas for the BMS Arico El-Bueno Freeride presented by Kebbek Skateboards and we managed to get a raw run of him bombing the Kebbek Short Cut down the run like a boss. He’s back home now and we took the opportunity to catch up with him on what’s good and where he’s headed for the warmer months.
Hey Crafty, stoked to interview you. Kick us off with your full name and favourite skate pants?
My full name is Raphaël Therrien, don’t forget the umlaut on the “e”. I love skating in anything stretchy! Volcom Pants have some good lean to them. I would love to try the push culture pants though…
What’s with Crafty Raft T? And something about Craft dinner? What should we call you and why?
Well… my name is insanely hard to say right, and I love craft dinner… so it just fit!
Where were you born and where are you living now?
I am from Montréal, and live in Ville-Émard. As you know it was Kebbek’s hood the past 10 years.
What’s a day in the life of you like? Skate all day? Work? School?
A day in my life? From Monday to Friday I wake up at 6 am, take the metro for an hour and finally I’m at school. I am there from 8 am to 6 pm, I study finance and it’s pretty serious. After school, I usually go back home OR sometimes I skate in Montréal with my homies. NIGHTS AND WEEKEND ARE SKATE TIME.
You took an epic road trip last summer with Coast Longboarding across Canada on the Coast 2 Coast tour. Was that your first time across Canada?
Yes, it was my first time across Canada and it was the best way to do it.
Have you been on many road trips before? Anything in the F Bomb before with Striker?
It was my second road trip. My first one was in North Carolina 2 months before the Coast 2 Coast tour. I had never heard about the F Bomb before my trip, but when I came to Vancouver, I saw it for the first time and woooo I was scared.
Was this the longest trip you have been on?
Yes, it was the longest trip of my life.
What was your favourite place to see in Canada?
Do you have a favorite skate spot from the trip?
One of the best spot was in BC, it wasn’t on the Coast 2 Coast tour. It was on the way back from Sullivan Challenge, we did a smooth run with some nice turns.
Would you do it again?
Not this year, I have other places that I want to skate and visit, but if you ask me this question again in 2 or 3 years I will probably say yes.
What did you do to pass the time when you were just on the road?
Shit Show shadow was there for that! He was an entertaining person, very funny. If he was sleeping I would sit in the front sit and watch the amazing landscape that we have in Canada.
You were on the trip with the support of Kebbek right? What’s your relationship with Kebbek? How long have you been a thing?
Yes, Kebbek supported me on this trip and I can’t say how stoked I am about it. I am now a pro rider for Kebbek since I had my pro model released a week ago. Kebbek started sponsoring me 3 years ago. Ian Comishin saw me at an event in Quebec and one day after it, he asked me if I would be down to skate for the company. They have known me for like 5 years now, because I used to go at the shop 3 times a week to say Hi to Steve Waldorf and help them to do some small things. I’m so thankful for all the support Kebbek have giving me.
You have a new board coming out this year right? Something in that Opalescence Series?
I am so stoked to have my pro model, this is insane. The color is amazing. You need to go at your local skate shop to see it.
Everyone has an animal to go with them right? Whats your spirit animal?
My board has the octopus because it was the animal for the top mount 33 in the past. Since my board is a top mount 36, we felt it was fitting to keep it going! . My Spirit animal is definetly the beaver! #quebecrepresent
What is it like being a part of a historic company like Kebbek?
It is amazing. I met a lot of OG kebbek riders. One of them is Pierre Gravel, he is always there to help me with whatever I need, if I have some questions or if I need something he is there. And you gotta see some of his OG skate photos, he slayed transition! As you know he is also Kebbek’s graphic designer, but has a seriously awesome history in skateboarding.
I saw a recent video talking about the history of the Smooth cut?
Hahaha yesss, this video. Like you know, I went on the Coast 2 Coast tour last summer, but I was there to learn English too. We filmed this video on my first day in Vancouver so my English wasn’t great. When I saw the video on Facebook I laughed pretty hard. The Smooth cut is a great board to run every day.
We just featured you in a new Check out Raw Run. You also had a fun video on Why Canadians Are Friendly Skaters. Were these both in Quebec?
Those runs were in Québec. So everyone can say that we have some pretty nice hills in Québec, come see us we are nice and respectful.
What are Quebec hills like?
Well we have about 6 months of winter, so the pavement is rough as hell, but that makes you a stronger skater because of it. Our brand manager Joey Bidner did a pretty sweet article that sums this topic up pretty good, Crusty!
Where are your favourite places to travel to when not in Quebec?
I didn’t travel a lot but my favourite place is North Carolina. I went there once and now I want more. The 18h drive worth it a lot.
How does your board fit your riding style?
First, the concave is amazing. My feet are locked in it. As you can see we have there is a kick tail so when I cruise around in the city it is always nice to do some ollie and whatever I want with it.
Wheel base: 24-25.75
Features: Micro drop, Flush mount, Wheel wells, Kicktail
You’re also riding Harfang Wheels right?
Yes I am. they are amazing. We now have the Harfang Absolute 78a, perfect for the race, they grip a lot. And watch out some freeride wheels are coming soon ;)
Do you have a preference for the grooves in the wet?
I’ll tell you something funny, I never had the chance to try them ha ha. I am in love with the urethane and have just been ripping the groveless wheels. But I heard from a lot of people that the grooves are incredible in the rain. I will try them as soon as possible.
What’s good for 2017? Future plans for the season?
I am so stoked to say that Kebbek sent me to the Canary Islands for EL Bueno Freeride and I have a full update for you to go with the raw run we posted.
For the summer, I know that I want to go in North Carolina at least once. Giants Head is an event that I would love to go. We will see later, I didn’t do my plans for the summer. I know one thing; this summer is going to be LIT
Thanks for chatting with me! Shout outs? Last words? Hi Moms?
Big thanks to my twin who was always being there to encourage me. As well as all my family and my girlfriend, they are always stoked for me. Finally, thanks to Steve Waldorf and Ian Comishin, they give me the passion that they have for the sport that we do and the support, without them, I would not be here. I also want to tank all my sponsors Kebbek Skateboards, Harfang wheels and Taboo restaurant. See you on the hill.