Santa Cruz, the eponymously titled brand from the town of the same name, has skate and surf culture running through every fibre of its being.
The oldest continuous skateboard company in existence, founded by three friends back in 1973 it has served as the professional home to many of the greatest skateboard talents the world has ever known. From Natas to Hosoi and Grosso to Moul, it's impossible to immerse yourself in skate folklore without coming into contact with Santa Cruz' rich history and its ubiquitous Screaming Hand logo is as iconic as they come.
The current team is as diverse as it is compelling, mixing approaches as wide ranging as the perma-inverted Erik Winkowski with the technical precision of Tom Asta. Throw in Fabiana Delfino, perhaps the most exciting female skater in the world today, and you have a brand that you simply cannot ignore.
Coming straight outta Venice (that's LA, not Italy) Blake channels the force of Sheffey and the grace Gino, mixing it all up into a 215lb pure skateboarding package! First coming to worldwide attention through the Illegal Civilization crew and earning his pro status from the legendary Eric Dressen, few are putting it down like the big man.
Breaking the stereotype of his East Coast roots, Bucks County Pennsylvania native Tom is as smooth as they come. As a purveyor of peak technical ledge skating, every flick is perfect and every landing impeccable. Discovered by Jamie Thomas and now part of the illustrious éS crew, at age 30 Tom's back catalogue of footage is the envy of skaters the world over - look up "textbook" in the skateboard dictionary and you'll find his mugshot staring right back at you.
What can be said about this man that hasn't already? With a glazed grin that has kept a thousand Californian dispensaries in business and the ability to destroy any transition before him, Erick Winkowski is the epitome of of that Nor Cal 'Skate and Destroy' ethos. Except he's So Cal born and bred, San Diego to be exact, and never really touched a ramp before a knee injury sent him into a psychedelic fulled bowl frenzy. But that was then and this is now and now he's upside down, stalling those inverts in the most proper way.
Whilst Fabi may well have first come to your attention as the sister of Pedro, it wasn't long before she'd forged a path very much her own. With the ability to rip any terrain in front of her and the stand out role in the stand out vid of 2020 (that's Vans Credits if you're still asleep under that rock) few skaters offer the levels of excitement a Fabiana Delfino session promises. That's if you can track her down of course; though she may be Boca Ranton, Florida by birth she spends most of her time on the roads these days and who can blame her? When you've got it like Fabi you make the most of it by getting out there and getting some.
Every team needs a talisman; that hometown hero that bleeds brand colours and serves as the face for the ages.
For Santa Cruz that's the one and only Emmanuel Guzman; from enders in 2005's Guarte through golden era Transworld and Thrasher parts, nobody has repped Santa Cruz through the modern epoch like Emmanuel. Early 2020 saw his loyalty rewarded with the celebration of his 15th year as pro and though he approaches the masters division in terms of age his hunger and thirst remains as resolute as ever.
No, not that one, the original one. The trailblazing Visalia street skater popularised slappies three decades before they became de rigueur for the youth of today and appeared in Speed Freaks alongside Natas; you simply don't get more OG than that!
Though now renowned for his highly skilled work in the world of tattooing, there was an age when Eric Dressen was the best street skater on the planet. Famed for his down hill lines and often labeled as the fastest skater ever, the diminutive Los Angeles local paved the way for millions by taking skateboarding out of the pools and into the streets. Inducted into the skateboarding Hall of Fame back in 2017, Eric still rips to this day - when you can get him away from the tattoo gun that is!
The OG. Skating since the early 70s, pro for over 40 years and a bona fide pioneer in a world where many lay claim, Steve Alba really is a true original. Though the Upland local rapidly approaches his 60th birthday he still skates harder and faster than many a third his age, thanks in no small part to his legendary stretch routine and a hook up to the fountain of youth. Never just a throw back to the days of punk rock and back yard pools, Salba is every bit as vital and relevant in 2020 as he was back in 1980.