As you probably know by now, Chela Giraldo is a boss and we’re incredibly stoked to have her on the Paris Truck Co. Team. Seriously, can’t believe it didn’t happen sooner. Could anyone be a better fit? I think not. Her ‘Welcome to the Team’ video dropped a while back, and I finally got around to asking her about it.
Ryan Ricker:Chela, since this is all official, I gotta say, Welcome to the Team! Are you stoked or what?
Chela Giraldo:Of course! I'm incredibly stoked to be a part of this amazing team full of very talented and lovely skaters. It’s a dream come true, I have always admired Paris since I started skating, and you know, Ryan is the best team manager ever!
RR:Awe thanks, I made you say that! Anyway, let’s take it back a notch. How did you get into downhill skating? When and where did you start?
CG:I've been skating for 10 years! Woah! That's crazy to think about. I started skating in Bogotá, Colombia. I was working in a skate shop back then, but I had NO IDEA about skateboards or longboards. Then I got a cruiser because I obviously had to take advantage of the discount, duh! I started using it as my transportation but later on I discovered that several of my friends were skating downhill at night. I started going to watch thspan skate and immediately knew I wanted to be that badass.
I started skating on Tuesday and Thursday nights after work, but I quickly got addicted, so at one point I was skating almost every night during the week and all day during the weekends.
RR:No way! That's so rad. What’s your favorite place to skate?
CG:If I had to mention only one place, I would say Medellin, Colombia. San Felix is the best long run; about 30-40 min skating down. The pavspanent is extrspanely smooth, the corners are very spicy and the speed is constant, so you can either go super fast or just chill if you slide constantly. Medellin has the craziest spots, there are millions of places to skate and get good. I have multiple spots in mind that I love to skate like Palmas, Angelopolis, El Yolombo, Santa Helena, La Teta...ooooft, the list can just go on and on!
RR:Blowing up all your spots! Who do you skate with?
CG:Sadly, I've been skating solo a lot because there are not a lot of people to skate with where I live (Austin, TX). But every once in a while, the homies from Houston, San Antonio and Dallas come through and we skate together all weekend. I especially love to skate with girls. Wish I could skate with girls all the time!
RR: Definitely good to get the crew together. I know you travel to skate, right?
CG:Yes! I used to travel a lot. I used to race in IDF races. Then I met Alex (Bad desicions Alex) and we started traveling together to skate, film, and chill. I realized I liked that lifestyle more than racing, because even though I was racing for fun, it was very stressful.Then Alex and I fell in love and got married!
RR:I mean, I don't blame you, Alex is a hunk! What’s your favorite skate event?
CG: Gosh, that’s a hard one because what I like the most about any event is not only the skating, but hanging out with all the other cool people and having a freaking good time. In terms of skating and having a good time, I think I have to say the Festival de la Bajada foooor suuuuure!
RR: Cool cool, I bet that one's a blast. Alright, down to business…let’s talk about your Welcome video. How did that come about?
CG: Oh heck yeah! Well, when I joined the team, you were all excited and wanted to let the world know, obviously! You asked if I wanted to film a “Welcome to the Team” video and I immediately said YES! I know Paris has some of the best quality content out there, so I felt that this video had to be special. Because of that I thought about contacting Mike Alfuso. I have always loved his videos and I wanted him to be the one making this one.
RR: Alfuso is the man! What was it like filming with him?
CG: It was another dream come true. For real! In the 10 years that I have been skating, I have always admired his videos so I felt very honored that we were making a video together. Mike and his film partner, Jonathan "JP" Park from Outpost Cinspana were both professional, quick and extrspanely fun to work with. They made me look like I knew what I was doing, ha!
RR: That's awesome. So I take it you're happy with the result?
CG: Yes! I cried so many times when I watched the final piece, because it’s so beautiful. The quality is impressive. All the different angles, the look and feel, and the music made all came together making it a masterpiece. They also nailed showing who I am and the way I skate. If you are reading this Mike and JP, THANK YOU!
RR: Definitely a masterpiece! So who are your sponsors these days?
CG: Loaded Boards, Orangatang Wheels, Cone Gloves, Ojoom Pucks.
RR: You forgot to say Paris! JK. Any last words?
CG: Anyone want to sponsor me to go to KnK this year? Ha!