by Shad Lambert

Welcome to the next level. At this stage, Rick McCrank can do airs like professional fighter pilots, come up with more skate-combo meals than McDonald’s, bust nollie kickflip lipslides on handrails, and stomp his tricks smoother than a tub of butta on a hot summer day. All this while simultaneously raising a family, starting a wheel company, designing a shoe, filming nonstop, golfing, snowboarding, and don’t forget being voted best street skater. Ahhhhh! This sounds like a crazy video game. By the way, Rick is going to be in a video game. So we can safely say Rick McCrank didn’t “chill” his way into the Best Street Skater award¿he paid his dues and worked for it. But how do you get an interview with someone this busy? Well, we shot McKrills a bunch of e-mail questions, and he bounced ‘em back to us. Welcome to the Ricky Digital interview.

Do you have any nicknames?

Cranker, Cranky, McKrills, McDank, Lick MaDank, et cetera. I don’t know many people who call me Rick.

Okay, if the Girl team was forced to wrestle in a steel-cage match, and Sheffey had to be the referee, who would win?

Sean would win, regardless.

Are you going to be in the TransWorld SKATEboarding video game?

Yup. I’m pretty psyched. The people who are making the game are doing it here in Vancouver, so I can go over there and check the progress whenever I want.

That’s cool. Do you have any other crazy tricks up your sleeve, like that no-handed airwalk? Maybe that could be your secret trick in the game?

Not really. I did this one trick on a kinked rail in a park, where I do a couple tricks in one, but that isn’t anything new. As far as my secret trick, I don’t know yet.

What’s it like hanging out with Rick Howard and Eric Koston? Are those guys always making jokes and just doing funny shit, or what?

It’s so rad. Howard likes to throw things at people, and he always seems to hit them in the head. Once in Tampa he threw a size-twelve shoe from the third floor at me while I was in the pool, when I wasn’t watching. He just missed my head by a hair; I would’ve been knocked out and drowning. I saw Rick throw a full soda can at Eric and split his head open. Eric got it on film, because he had a camera in his hand at the time.

Was that Whiskey snowboard video your video debut? Did those guys ever ask you to break bottles over your head or anything?

No, they never asked me to do anything like that, they knew what I was about. The first video I was in was this one out of Whistler called The Burning. My friends Murray Siple and Brad MacGregor made it. One day I was sitting in my house in Whistler, when this guy called and said, “Hey, I’m Brad. I hear you’re good, do you wanna go to the city and film?” I said sure. I went and met a photographer named Scott Serfas and Moses Itkonen. My board was so beat that when Moses set up a new one, he gave me his old one. I switch ollied over the rail at the new spot. Scott shot it, and it ended up on the cover of this Canadian mag called Concrete Powder. So I guess I owe my whole career to Brad for the call. I don’t think I would have pursued it otherwise.

So, why are you number 31 in the éS ads?

I wanted a number that was special to me, and Kalea’s Rick’s daughter birthday is on the 31st of May, so I figured it doesn’t get any more special than that.

Who do you think has the best kickflip? Best 360 flip?

I like Josh Kalis’ 360 flips and Daewon’s fakie 360 flips, and I like Mike Carroll’s kickflips because he catches them so high.

Do you live by a motto?

Not really. I guess if I did it would be to just go with it. I never in a million years thought I’d have what I have today. I don’t think I could have planned for it. I always thought I wouldn’t amount to anything¿maybe I won’t.

Ever watch MTV?

Nope, we don’t have MTV in Canada, we have Much Music, but I don’t watch that. I almost never watch TV. If I do, I watch the Food Network, the Golf Channel, or vios. I watch a lot of Kalea’s French cartoons on video.

So what kind of music do you listen to?

I listen to everything. A lot of hip-hop, but I prefer the beats over the lyrics ’cause a lot of lyrics are dumb. I truly like everything, though. I was heavy into Stan Getz for a while¿once I was in Milwaukee at a competition and I went into a record shop and bought ten Stan Getz records. I guess it depends on my moods. There’s nothin’ like some straight-edge hardcore to get you angry.

Who did you vote for? Best Street Skater?

Koston¿always killing it.

Best Vert Skater?

McKay¿so fresh.

Best All-Around?

McKay.

Best Style?

Justin Strubbing¿underrated killer.

Best Video Part?

Scott Johnston.

Best Video?

Chocolate Tour¿minus me.

What’s the deal with Momentum wheels?

I mentioned to Jody Morris I wanted to start a wheel company, so I’d have something to fall back on after skating. He said he’d be into it. He’s the main reason we did it, though¿he had the motivation to start things up. We’ve got a good team, and most importantly we’ve got good products. I’m pretty proud of what we’ve made.

Hey, can I get a Momentum sweatshirt?

It’s in the mail, you can check out the styles at momentumskate.com¿our site is sick. We have three music tracks to choose from in the background, plus we’re going to put in a game and a chat room.

Whenever I see footage of you falling, it’s like you’re joking or doing it on purpose. Do you have any tips on how to fall gracefully?

I guess I’m lucky ’cause I’m light. I try to slide when I fall, and it spreads my weight out. I slide on my butt a lot, though, and I get wedgies every time.

Are there any tricks you would like to see people start doing again?

Anything on vert. I think vert is the funnest thing in skating¿once you get over the fear, that is.

Are there any tricks that bug you? Like most people hate benihanas or pressure flips.

Not really. I used to dislike all those shove-in, shove-out ledge tricks, and I realized I didn’t like ‘em cause I couldn’t do ‘em.

What questions do you get asked the most by people when you go on tour? Like, “When is the next Girl video coming out?” or what?

It’s usually, “Can I have your board?” or “Were you in The End?”

Ummm, if you were an albino spider monkey and you did a roast-beef grab with your prehensile tail, what would the grab be called?

Faux dink.

From what I hear, you skate every day for at least a couple hours. Is that true?

Yeah, I skate when it’s dry. We don’t have an indoor park here, which is pretty strange considering all the outdoor parks we have. But, yeah, at least a couple of hours. If Kalea’s being baby-sat, we’ll go all day.

What other stuff do you do besides skate?

In the winter I really like to snowboard. I used to live in Whistler¿that was sick. I like to ride big mountains. Lately I’ve been riding park and pipe a lot. I also love to golf. I think most skaters golf; if they don’t, I bet they will some time. Other than that, I just hang with my family.

What was up with the egg incident in South Africa? Didn’t you, Rick Howard, Eric Koston, and Atiba go crazy egging cars or something?

We had this demo at a rave. It was kind of a surprise demo ’cause we didn’t know about it until that day¿there was a few of those in S.A. Anyway, when we were driving to the demo, and I was in this local guy John’s truck, and everyone else was in the van. So for some reason I started throwing stuff that was laying around in the truck at the van. First it was little things, then it was wheels, bearings, and stuff. We pulled over ’cause we were lost. Then Eric ran out of the van and threw an unopened cup of yogurt at the truck. The window was open and it filled the truck with yogurt. After that we went to the rave, me and John were covered in yogurt. On the way home we went to a store to get water and snacks. We grabbed tons of yogurt and eggs, that’s when the war started. That went on for the rest of the trip.

What’s up with your shoe? Is it going to have any stash pockets or cell-phone holders?

No, none of that business. The shoe is gonna be a good-lookin’ skate shoe, period.

Why do Canadian kids have a reputation for breaking stuff?

The only thing I can think of that would make you say that would be those Whiskey videos. Those guys are an exception. Other than those guys everyone’s pretty chill.

Did you really film all that footage in the Birdhouse video in two days?

No. It was a week in Cali and a couple days in Vancouver, so nine days, I guess.

You said you like to snowboard, can you do rodeo flips, 360s, 720s?

I just learned frontside rodeos in the pipe¿that was pretty fun. I like to snowboard a lot. I think there’s a lot of stupid stuff in the sport, but it’s still super fun to be up in the mountains with your friends, jumpin’ off stuff.

Have you ever been snowboarding and thought to yourself, “This is soooo easy!”?

Sometimes I think it’s easy, other times I don’t like sticking really big stuff.

Any shout-outs or advice you’d like to give?

I think people should learn more about the food they’re eating, like all the chemicals and crap they put in it. There’s gotta be a reason for all the cancer and diseases humans get, so eat organic food and discover taste again. You can learn about GMOs (genetically altered foods), if you just do a seach on the Internet. That’s it.

These are Rick’s many thank-yous:

Kalea, Iza and her family, Mom and Family, Brad MacGregor, Michele McBurney, Don Brown, Pierre Andre, Colin McKay and the McKay family, Danny Way, Mary Ternasky and everyone who was ever on Plan B, Scott Serfas, Jody Morris, Judah, Will Newland, Aaron Regan, Steve Black, Rick Howard and everyone on Girl and Chocolate, Teebs, Ty, Swift, Skin, Grant, and everyone at T-World,Tony Hawk and everyone at B-house, Moses, Red Dragons, Tracy and Dylan, Craig Engman, Sasha, the Momentum team, Stouty, Pat Channita and the Channita family, Arto, Rowley, Sole Tech, everyone on éS, Lance Dawes, Doug Proodian, Chad Dinenna, Syd, Jim Thiebaud, Lance Mountain, Greg Carroll, and Bill Keller. If I forgot you, I’m sorry. Oh, and my sponsors Girl, éS, Droors, yride.com, Royal, Momentum, Nixon, Bones Bearings, Mounting Machines, and RDS.

rt and eggs, that’s when the war started. That went on for the rest of the trip.

What’s up with your shoe? Is it going to have any stash pockets or cell-phone holders?

No, none of that business. The shoe is gonna be a good-lookin’ skate shoe, period.

Why do Canadian kids have a reputation for breaking stuff?

The only thing I can think of that would make you say that would be those Whiskey videos. Those guys are an exception. Other than those guys everyone’s pretty chill.

Did you really film all that footage in the Birdhouse video in two days?

No. It was a week in Cali and a couple days in Vancouver, so nine days, I guess.

You said you like to snowboard, can you do rodeo flips, 360s, 720s?

I just learned frontside rodeos in the pipe¿that was pretty fun. I like to snowboard a lot. I think there’s a lot of stupid stuff in the sport, but it’s still super fun to be up in the mountains with your friends, jumpin’ off stuff.

Have you ever been snowboarding and thought to yourself, “This is soooo easy!”?

Sometimes I think it’s easy, other times I don’t like sticking really big stuff.

Any shout-outs or advice you’d like to give?

I think people should learn more about the food they’re eating, like all the chemicals and crap they put in it. There’s gotta be a reason for all the cancer and diseases humans get, so eat organic food and discover taste again. You can learn about GMOs (genetically altered foods), if you just do a seach on the Internet. That’s it.

These are Rick’s many thank-yous:

Kalea, Iza and her family, Mom and Family, Brad MacGregor, Michele McBurney, Don Brown, Pierre Andre, Colin McKay and the McKay family, Danny Way, Mary Ternasky and everyone who was ever on Plan B, Scott Serfas, Jody Morris, Judah, Will Newland, Aaron Regan, Steve Black, Rick Howard and everyone on Girl and Chocolate, Teebs, Ty, Swift, Skin, Grant, and everyone at T-World,Tony Hawk and everyone at B-house, Moses, Red Dragons, Tracy and Dylan, Craig Engman, Sasha, the Momentum team, Stouty, Pat Channita and the Channita family, Arto, Rowley, Sole Tech, everyone on éS, Lance Dawes, Doug Proodian, Chad Dinenna, Syd, Jim Thiebaud, Lance Mountain, Greg Carroll, and Bill Keller. If I forgot you, I’m sorry. Oh, and my sponsors Girl, éS, Droors, yride.com, Royal, Momentum, Nixon, Bones Bearings, Mounting Machines, and RDS.