Manual Magazine

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Posted by manualmagazine on Thursday January 12 2017

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Despite celebrity deaths and Trump-elect 2016 was a remarkably rad year. The new breed drove their stake in deeper, the well-known became even more refined. The pressing question is: who will be crowned New Zealand Skater of the Year for 2016.

Vote for your choice now or peruse the list below to see our favourites from the past year.


Jake Darwen

Jake Darwen needs no introduction around here; 2016 saw the talented photographer switch roles once again to provide us with his signature finesse on the other side of the lens.


Lenard Tejada

Lenard’s progress in 2016 was off the charts. His dominance at competitions was unrivalled. Coupled with constant clips showing us just how much he was progressing.


Luke Blackman

Hailing from the Hutt Valley, it’s the unofficial mayor of Lower Hutt, Luke Blackman. Hell! With a video part like this, he may as well be the official mayor.


Christian Low

Christian Low is no stranger to the NZSOTY line up, and with good reason. 2016 saw C-Low move back to the motherland, smash out a handful of photos and to top it off, he released the following part in his brothers new vid Working Class.


Josh ‘Morph’ Malthus

If there was ever an award for the most blood shed while filming a part, it’d go to Morph, hands down. Morph put flesh to concrete on more then one occasion over the past 12 months, in the process claiming a cover (an invert at Albany bowl), piecing together one of the gnarliest Close Up features in recent times and releasing his highly anticipated Possessed part.


Jack Fagan

A true skate rat, Jack is always skating and always producing; 2016 was no different.


Sean Boucher

Mr. Boucher started his year off by being crowned the first New Zealand National Bowl Champion, what followed this was a series of mind-melting placings in events across the country. Not bad if you ask us.

Tailgrab fakie, Hamilton. Photo by David Read

Tailgrab fakie, Hamilton. Photo by David Read


Luke Browne

Luke Browne is some sort of modern day renaissance man, and he does it all while looking like he’s up to fuck all. Putting in equal amounts of work on both sides of the lens, along with a feature interview for Issue #63, makes LB an ideal contender from all angles.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates & Readers’ Poll

Wallride, Wellington. Photo by Jake Mein


PJ Wybrow

One of Dunedin’s finest new gens, PJ doesn’t mess around; tackling mammoth sized sets is just the beginning.

Switch ollie, Wellington. Photo by Jake Mein

Switch ollie, Wellington. Photo by Jake Mein


Cade Wilson-Russ

What can we say about Cade that hasn’t already been said before. He’s the man child from out West with a timeless style that keeps us coming back for more. That, and he’s got one of the best 360 flips in the South.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates & Readers’ Poll

Nollie pop shuvit, Nelson. Photo by Jake Mein


Kadin Elliot

He’s a hell-bent maniac that rides like he’s on fire. Clear the decks and let him through.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates & Readers’ Poll

Ollie up to 50-50. Photo by David Read


Zach Wheeler

One of Aotea Square’s resident locals, a tech powerhouse and an all round exceptional skateboarder. Watch Zach’s Up For Grab part below as reminder of just what he’s capable of.


Mikey Gibson

It wasn’t until we took a step back, that we realised just how much Mikey Gibson had accomplished in 2016, appearances in multiple issues throughout the year, a solid online presence and rounding it out with a part in Up For Grabs.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates & Readers’ Poll

Pupecki grind, Auckland. Photo by Isaac Matz.


Karl Truell

When it comes to Karl every year seems to superseded the year the before. 2016’s achievements include: a cover and a heavy Close Up feature in Issue #61, along with appearances in videos, both here and across the ditch, including ALC’s A Lost Cause 2. A definite favourite for 2016NZSOTY.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates & Readers’ Poll

Ollie, Wellington. Photo by Jake Mein


Matt Markland

Matt Markland is nothing if not a hard worker; when he’s not leaving his mark somewhere around the country, you’ll find him posted up at Lower Hutt’s recently built skate plaza. Did we mention he also had a Turning Point feature in Issue #62?

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates & Readers’ Poll

Backside tailslide bigspin out, Christchurch. Photos by Tomoki Peters


Chase Collins

One might say this isn’t Chase’s first rodeo, and considering he was crowned the 2015 NZ Skater Of The Year, they’d be right. The Big Rig was back in full force during 2016 with video guest appearances and photos all year round, and a full video part in Working Class to boot.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Pole jam, Auckland. Photo by Jake Mein


Hootie Andrewes

2016 was Hootie’s year, he seemed to step everything up. His skating popped up in nearly every clip that came out of Wellington and Melbourne, he produced photos in every single issue last year and shows no sign of slowing down. Oh, and he nabbed the cover of Issue #64.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Backside 180 nosegrind, Melbourne. Photo by Jason Morey


Dan Gemmell

If there is anyone you can attribute the word stalwart to, it’s Dan Gemmell, looking back on every year Dan comes through with incredible skateboarding. Whether he’s filming parts for videos or making his own, Dan does it all with a grin.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Ollie, Mount Maunganui. Photo by Glenn Smith


Sean Bone

Including a stand out part in the Capital.DV video, Bone maintained his shred it all reputation. A true power house and one to keep an eye on.


Jesse Egden

New Zealand’s own Switch God, Jesse Egden, once again proving himself with countless feats throughout ’16, including but not limited to a solid section in A Lost Cause Pt. 2 and the cover of the Skateboard Codex Zine.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Switch noseslide, Napier. Photo by Fergus Haywood


Maluai Palakua

If you haven’t yet, you need to watch Maluai’s part in the new A Lost Cause Pt. 2 video to get a real sense of how good he really is. While you’re at it, go and check some of the photos he had published over the last 12 months.


Josh Wilson

The Navigator or evil twin turned heads in 2016 with his signature style managing to compete and do well at different events around New Zealand all while going through some major injuries.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Josh Wilson, Invert, Hamilton. Photo by David Read


Justice Reid

The man with the perma-grin, from his Close Up feature in issue 64 to some incredible skating in the new ALC video. One of the most consistent & smooth skateboarders you’ll see.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Gap to backside lipslide, Taupo. Photo by Fergus Haywood


Max Couling

The man with the mouth who is also part of the NZ SOTY alumni hasn’t taken a day off. From countless trips to China, to a handful of heavy parts, the Runanga local keeps it moving.


Casey Foley

344, School Holidays and Domingo 2 – If one thing’s certain, it’s that there was no shortage of Ducky footage during 2016. We can only hope this is case for 2017.


Geoff Campbell

Geoff is refined as they come, an auteur and leading man. He’s responsible, in part, for the cinematic success of many a skateboarder from our south isle. Including his own.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Noseslide gap out, Dunedin. Photos by Jake Mein


Scott Olds

Flying relatively low under the radar during 2016, Scott Olds left his mark where it mattered most, on our screens, in particular with his Capital.DV video part. Watch it and see for yourself.


Elijah Robertson

After making the move from Auckland to Melbourne, Elijah took everything up a notch, from his parts in Onti Goes & Up for Grabs video to images in international magazines and a Close Up feature in our very own magazine. Elijah is one to watch.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Frontside crooked grind, Melbourne. Photo by Isaac Matz


Billy McLachlan

When he’s not organising events Billy manages to shoot interviews, film full video parts. All in a days work.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Frontside smith grind, Christchurch. Photo by Tomoki Peters


Tom Snape

Coming back from a major knee injury Snape came through with some incredible clips for the recent Sports Class video, Partners In Crime, followed by the adidas Away Days tour later in the year. We should probably also mention Snape’s cameo in the Away Days video. Going from strength to strength Snape is always a contender.


Joe Edwards

Coming from relative obscurity Joe burst onto the scene with his Turning Point feature in issue 64. It only takes a glance over those pages to see the kid has it.

2016 New Zealand Skater of the Year: Candidates

Switch crooked grind, Auckland. Photo by Kingsley Attwood


VOTE HERE