The Crackers are back but instead of Crackers 5 we get a short but very sweet road trip video. We are not going to lie, vibe, and skating wise the path they followed is amongst the best in Europe. From Berlin, Warsaw, Budapest, and finally, to Vienna the spots to skate and camp are plenty and the grilling is good.
If you want more Chima check out his Place Remix part here:
A new one by our good friends from POP Trading Company who teamed up with the record label Safe-Trip to create a whole collection.
Video by Jan Maarten Sneep featuring Bastiaan van Zadelhoff, Jair Gravenberch, Chima Chibueze, Pascal Moelaert, Hugo Snelooper, Logan Da Silva Ortiz, Tomas De Keulenaar, Billy Hoogendijk, Jeff van der Veken, Alex Raeymaekers, Yeelen Moens, Ali Belhadj & Rob Maatman.
The Crackers crew for me is a typical Dutch group of skaters. Yes as a crew they are a diverse group of people but during this interview, I did get flashbacks of my own times traveling in a car with friends sleeping in tents.
It is not a city slicker type of Dutch either it is a group of country boys going on an adventure together. Skating around and doing what they like together. I think the best example of the type of Dutch I mean is this little snippet from the 1974 Oscar-nominated Paul Verhoeven film: Turks Fruit.
Anyway in many ways these are a typical group of young skaters doing their thing and that is something we can all relate to. So make some tea, put on your glasses, press play and afterwards scroll down to meet the CRACKERS.
We are proud to present to you this remix of Chima Chibueze’s best footage from Crackers 3 & 4 and their first Crackers crew interview with us.
First question how old are you?
Chima Chibueze 22, Hidde Tuinte 22, Justin Drenthe 22, Jim Vroling 19 & Lucas Atteveld 25. Harm Sierkstra is not here because he’s a sailor at work, currently somewhere off the coast of Denmark.
How did you guys actually meet?
Hidde: I met Chima at Hollandia, the skatepark in our hometown of Hoorn.
Justin: Chima and I lived close to each other and I used to see him skating around the neighborhood. We go way back!
Chima: This was around 2006.
The crew: If you need dates Chima knows all the dates by heart (laughs).
Chima: I wasn’t aware that I had this reputation (laughs). But getting back to the question we met at Hollandia skatepark.
Only me and Justin had met before in school when we were around 7 years old. We both tried to skate back then.
Justin: We could barely walk (laughs). We wanted to skate but we couldn’t ollie. So we tied elastic bands around our shoes and board so we could jump.
Chima: But he got held back a year in school so we lost touch because playing together is based on being in the same class.
Justin: I actually stopped skating because of it.
Chima: But then at 15, he contacted me because he wanted to get back into skating again. I was already doing it a lot back then so we connected back up again.
Is Chima the one that connected you all?
The crew: It was more the skatepark that brought us all together. The thing is Hoorn (where we live) is small you if you skate you are bound to meet everyone at some point.
So you are the hardcore skaters of Hoorn?
The crew: At least the ones that film their skating.
Let’s talk about that how did that part of it start?
The crew: Well, Lucas first started filming, but we first had a different crew before we turned into Crackers.
Chima: The Second Skate Team! They need their props too. We had a Youtube channel and we would have this JVC cam with a loose fisheye.
Hidde: The fisheye was way too big for the camera, so you couldn’t screw it on, you would have to hold it in front of the camera to film lines. But at some point we gaffa taped the lens on (laughs).
Chima: We were also heavy in our Stay Gold phase.
Lucas: That DVD got passed around!
OK…But how did CRACKERS start?
Chima: Well, it started at the park, Justin brought some really large crackers to eat. We filmed some lines and after every make, we would hold those large crackers in front of the lense.
Hidde: So real start of CRACKERS as a crew. Well, at some point I made an impulse buy, I bought a second-hand VX of off Marktplaat (Dutch eBay). And we started to film, and after we filled up one tape I made an edit. To be honest, I really like edits with weird names so once I finished the edit that is what came to mind. Crackers 1 was born.
After that, we did our first skate trip to Berlin, and the footage of that trip became crackers 2.
Yes, I watched that one!
Hidde: After that, we did some trips to Paris but on the first day, Chima hit his knee and was out for two months.
Jim: Day one in Paris, we did this downhill to the spot and about 50 meters before we arrive he hits his knee and is out.
Chima: I arrived at spot 1 broken.
Hidde: So instead of making it a video of that trip, we decided to do multiple trips, mostly to Belgium and film for a full length. In the end, everybody hat parts and that turned out to be Crackers 3.
It was also the first one we did a premiere for. Harm was the one who said he would take care of that. He is a sailor and likes to take care of things and make shit happen.
But because he is a sailor he can be gone at sea for 6 months at a time. So I had to finish this video at a certain date so he could be at the premiere. I managed to finish it on the day of the event.
Chima: On our trip to Belgium, we got to like the taste of Cara Pils. So Harm had this crazy idea to get Cara for the premiere of CRACKERS 3. He actually took a train before the premiere, bought the beer for everybody there back to Hoorn. And at the event, everyone there got one and was asked to open it at the same time. And it worked!
Jim: It sounded amazing!
Chima: Essay magazine picked it up and did the online release of Crackers 3. Through that Ben-g shared it and Hardcore Supplies saw it so I got hooked up through that. So Crackers 3 really got us noticed.
You started having trouble walking the streets of Hoorn without getting noticed (laughs).
Jim: It happed quite a lot.
Lucas: That ended up being the reason I moved to Amsterdam (laughs).
So the videos evolved every time?
Chima: The first one was filmed in a day, the second on one trip, the third was a full length with parts and 4 was the same as 3 but better.
Hidde: We had a big plan when we started doing 4, we rented a van and wanted to visit as man countries as possible.
Harm probably rented it right?
The crew: (laughs) He did, he takes care of things.
Chima: Even at sea, he would just tell me “yo, could you go here real quick and take care of this”. Crackers 4 was the first time I ever stayed in a tent and I was a bit scared of what was to come. But we got really lucky not even 2 days of rain on a 22-day trip.
The crew: We ended up loading the van up with beers and tents and drove around places.
It was during that long & dry summer, it was so dry that parts of Sweden were burning down. So naturally, we couldn’t barbeque that much. And during the day it was mostly too hot to skate but we did our thing.
The Swedes didn’t like us that much, we got chased on a couple of occasions and police pulled up on our campsite.
Why they always seem so chill over there?
Chima: Well, the owner of the campsite didn’t like us, he wasn’t into skaters. But we did start barbecuing even though it wasn’t allowed. So second to last day we went to pay for our stay all of a sudden we had to pay extra. No problem we did it we didn’t want any trouble.
All of a sudden, in the morning we were about to leave all 4 cop cars pulled up. Routine check they said, but actually, they only checked our shit. Luckily the weed was hidden beneath all of the stuff in the van and luckily they didn’t bring dogs.
Justin: We did break a sweat there for a second.
Maybe next time no family camping grounds.
Chima: I would like to stay in tents again on our next trip. You relax more that way.
How do you guys find spots on trips?
Jim: We go through edits and try to mark spots we could go to on one of our trips. So we make a map and use that and decide on areas on a day to day basis.
Besides Harm, all of you are still in school right? So this had to have taken place during the summer holidays.
The crew: We did last year but in 2020 Lucas has a job, Justin works & Harm is a sailor.
Chima: We went to Brussels in October and Barca in February to escape winter for a bit. Because we are still in school doing trips is a bit easier, we aren’t fully twisted up in life yet (laughs). We don’t have 9 to 5’s so if we have time in February let’s just go.
So what are the prospects for CRACKERS 5?
Hidde: Well, I would be down to do some more short edits first.
Chima: Some intermezzos
Hidde: There is this one idea already floating around. There is a little park in Hoorn called “De Kers” (translation: the cherry) and I would love to make an edit around that park.
Justin: We are going on a trip this summer but we don’t know where so maybe we will be doing a full length. We did all the skate capitals now, Amsterdam, Berlin, Brussels, Barcelona, London, Copenhagen, Hamburg & Malmö so were too?
East! Warsaw for instance or Moscow, maybe Ukraine? They have great spots.
Chima: We do have a friend living in Poland.
Jim: Budapest seems sick as well.
Chima: Tents is a requirement though! No hostels or Airbnb’s
Justin: We will drive our van into the bushes and camp anywhere. Most of the time we don’t even do campsites we just find a strip next to the road and camp out there.
Last year we went to London and I didn’t really like it, too big, too much security, cameras, etc.
Polish people are nice so I am sure it won’t be an issue.
With Harm being gone at sea what do people need to know about him?
Justin: He has a yacht that we often chill at. We smoke and drink there and go sail around. He basically lives there.
It is not a houseboat?
Chima: I just sent you a picture to include. By the way, some of the crew are moving away we are making a DAMTRANSITION (laughs).
Lucas: We are at my place in Amsterdam right now.
Jim: Hoorn is home but some of us are making a transition and Amsterdam seems the closest exciting city to Hoorn. That is why the last part in CRACKERS 4 is Hoorn.
Some of the best tricks in the video are in Hoorn.
Hidde: For some tricks, we went back multiple times.
Jim: The 10 stair fs flip that took like 4-5 trips to ride away.
Chima: Somebody did a kickflip down that set and we felt that somebody from Hoorn needed to have the best trick on that spot so that is how the fs flip happened.
It was a big test for my body, after some of the sessions, my hip would be totally blue.
Jim: It was during winter as well, so it was pretty cold.
Justin: After that you did that boardslide it was shutdown.
What about you Jim?
Jim: Well, that line I did with the noseslide pop-over took me quite long. I had 1:30 hours to do it because I had to go to a birthday party. But I couldn’t do it in that timeframe. So at some point, my girlfriend started calling me during the session asking where I was… (laughs) I just told her I had to do this trick.
In the end, I turned up to her mom’s birthday all sweaty, dirty, with my board still in hand (laughs). They just asked why are you sooo late (laughs).
By the way, did you like the remix?
The crew: We loved it.
Hidde: It was hard to go back and re-edit it and keep the original feeling but in the end, it did work.
Lucas: You have a specific bond to the footage with that particular song but in the end, I like the fact that we are doing a remix and we are keeping the same vibe as the original.
In 2020 one of the most motivating things to see is that making a video with your local crew of friends is still a thing in our IG heavy world.
Taking your friends, a camera and a car on a trip is also a staple moment in the life of many skaters both young and old.
Now not every video of that ilk makes it onto a platform like this but this not every crew has a standout skater like Chima Chibueze in their crew. Undoubtedly the person with the most footage in this video he together with his friends elevated this video to a very fun “I want to go skating now!” type of level.
Listen we like almost anything that Jan Maarten Sneep aka Memoryscreen points his lens towards but this one together with Pop Trading Co’s own Chima is special. If you know Sneep’s skating you know what he likes and you can tell by this edit that the skater and the filmer loved the same shit.
enough talk go watch Chima & Sneep’s latest work together.
On Saturday, September 15th, 2018, Pop Trading Company joined forces with Vans to host the first edition of Vondel ‘18. An invitational skateboard contest in the middle of Amsterdam’s Vondelpark. The concept of this event is referring back to simpler times, where phones were not our first priority. You could find basic obstacles reminiscing of San Francisco’s Back to the City contest or closer to home the 3rd Floor Skatepark in Pakhuis Amerika back in the mid to late 90’s.
Next to an impressive line up of some of the best skateboarders in the world and a very interesting location, unique to this event was the lack of media. All skateboarders were documented by one crew using Hi-8 camera’s as it would happen in the early days, pre-internet, where you would have to wait for the latest 411 Video Magazine or Transworld Skateboarding to see who had won a skateboard competition.
With checkpoints at both entrances the crowd had to go back in time with us as phone cameras were stickered, Berghain style, where the court was treated like a movie set, nobody films or shoots photos apart from the invited media.
The contest footage is released on VHS tape, which you can find now at a few select local dealers.
Shot by Peter Buikema & Alex van Zwietering Edit by Peter Buikema Produced by Roland Hoogwater & Peter Kolks Artwork by Ric van Rest