Nico Mac Mahon interview

Nico tells us all about the skate scene in his country and the spread of downhill skateboarding in Argentina.
Hola Nico, where are you from?
I’m from La Plata, Argentina. About 50kms from Buenos Aires, the capital.

What does ‘’La Plata’’ mean?
The name of the city. I guess it means something like Silver city.

What is it like for skating?
Really flat, no hills, a lot of street skate or freestyle longboarding. Not a cool place for a downhill skateboarder but a nice city.

Did you start skating in La Plata?
I started longboarding here, I used to street skate when I was living in a different city about 10 years ago.

Do you still street skate?
Not much. I have an old school Alva and usually go to skate some bowls, but not often. I do more DH.

Where did you first skate?
I first skated when I was like 13 in Mar del Plata, a coastal city of Argentina. It was the perfect spot for skate and longboarding. Now it is the main city for the skate scene.

Is there a big longboarding community in Mar del Plata?
Huge! With very good riders and growing every day. They are more focused on freestyle.

Who are the people driving the community in your city?
There are no people driving the community, just different crews sharing the same spots. A bunch of friends.

Do you have a local crew?
Yeah its kind of a crew, we are more like friends. Especially because two of them are also called Nico. We are the 3 Nicos that skated together from the very start haha!

Who are the other Nicos?
Nico Dasso and Nico Aon, the best freestyle riders that I’ve ever seen. They are progressing in dh! I think I’m spreading the disease. We go on trips together.

What is the scene like in Argentina?
The scene here is growing, today we have an IGSA Race which is a World Cup Event and 5 or 6 national races. And that’s just DH. A lot of events of different styles of skating , shops, brands. Growing really fast!

Is this the first year of this race?
Not the first year, in 2011 it was an IGSA Continental race. Snake Skeleton World Cup.

Who organises the race?
The  IGSA World Cup is hosted by Argentina Longboard. Real serious and responsible people.

What is Argentina Longboard?
Argentina Longboard are a couple of riders, Fran y Claudia. Really good friends.They also manage a hostel which is the perfect place for riders when you go to San Luis for a dh session!

How is the track?
Dalua said that it is the South American Maryhill. That is a good description, a lot of sweepers. You can reach about 85 kph. A lot of fun for sure!

What makes it different from other World Cup races?
There are a lot of races in the year, but only a few WC. That means the best riders in the world, a lot of speed and a lot of fun!

Good parties?
For sure!  So you know, you are welcome here!  For the race and the party! haha

When did you get into downhill?
2010. My first race was in Mendoza, another province. It was one of the only championships of the year and the only one of DH and only two years ago! 2 months later a trip with friends and that’s it, I was hooked!

Your first time tasting speed was at a race?
Yeah! I bought my first longboard and 6 months later I was in a race, so almost immediately.

What was your first board?
A national board quite useless for all discipline, just cruising.

What did you enjoy about going fast?
I like the speed on anything. Motorcycles or cars so that’s why I look for the same when I skate.

Are you a motorcylce racer?
No, but I really like motorcycles! I’m about to build a cafe racer.

What’s a cafe racer?
A cafe racer is an old English street – race bike. Like an American chopper or bobber but more focused on speed.

Is DH the most popular discipline in Argentina?
I guess it is the discipline in longboarding that is growing fastest. But in general there are a lot of riders for every style. This year we had 3 races already and yet there are two more to come.

Is there one near your city?
No, all are far away. But it’s a good excuse to travel and meet friends so I really enjoy it!

Which is your favourite?
Pampa the la viuda in La Rioja. That race is awesome!

How did you do in the races last year?
Pretty good for someone coming from flat land hahaha and focused on further progress day by day and logically go ever faster.

When was your first full season of racing?
This is my first year traveling so much and going to different races.

What was the most important thing you learnt in your first races?
Relax, enjoy and stay focused!

Have you skated outside Argentina yet?
Yes, I raced in Chile and Brazil. In Chile the Chacattack Race and in Brazil The Nova Padua Skate velocita.

How did that go?
In Chile all went wrong, the organization was a disaster and I came back with a cast on my right arm. But I can say that the track is perfect fun and fast. In Brazil I really know the speed! All the Brazilian tracks are sick! They reach 100 kmh!

What did you enjoy most about your time abroad?
I really enjoy the connection. I can get away from everyday things and just look forward and think only about going fast.

What are your plans for the rest of the season?
The plans for this season are within a week to go skating at San Luis, just to train, then a local race in Mendoza. After a race in Colombia, Snake Skeleton here, perhaps a race in Brazil and finish again in December here in Esquel, with another national race. A lot of fun, travel and friends ahead!

Do you have any plans to skate outside South America?
Sure! I want to go to some race in Europe or North America. My favourite in Europe is Kozakov and in North America of course Maryhill!

What do you ride?
I’m riding a Comet hammer board, Aera trucks, venom bushings and Abec 11 wheels for racing and volante wheels for freeriding!

Are any of those your sponsors?
Unfortunately not! I have a sponsor who is a distributor of some of these brands.South Riders. Love those guys, they are like family! And really help in everything.

What do you do when you’re not skating?
Working in an office. But just because it pays for my travel and skate!

Pick 3 numbers between 1-39.
13 (my lucky number) 25 and 38

13 – Do you have a pet?
A Black cat! Muchacho

25- Would you rather be a penguin stuck in a lions body, or a lion stuck in a penguin?
Always a lion!

38: Ari C asks: Would you rather have a dorsal fin or gills?
A dorsal fin.

Nico! It has been really really fun talking to you bro, best of luck in the remaining races this season!
Thanks a lot bro!  Was also really fun to talk to you too and hope that life unite us in one sesssion! You ‘re always welcome around here!

Any thank yous?
Thanks to my Girl, Camilla, my friends the Nicos and South Riders: We are family!


Thanks to Carlos Gomez for the photos!