In celebration of our recent anniversary issue we made some predictions for the next 20 years we realise it isn’t easy feat, and putting those thoughts down in print (and pixels) is even dicier.

I’m going to avoid making any predictions myself so nobody can dig this issue out of their parents’ garage in 20 years and rub this intro in my middle-aged face. I’m going to let the guys at the magazine do it.

The thing about predicting the future is that the big thing in 20 years might not exist yet, or maybe the person everyone’s banking on blowing up will make a sudden career switch, get fucked up and get arrested for masturbating on the hood of some poor stranger’s car in the middle of the day.

The 10 year anniversary issue of Manual was the first skate mag I ever laid eyes on. I got it with a Golden Dragon complete for my birthday and read it until the binding came undone. A lot has changed in those ten years. I’ve grown pubes, people stopped using instrumentals in videos, and the crew at Manual is completely different.

Considering how much has changed in the last ten years, I’ve got to slow down to think about the last 20. I was 2 when the magazine started, which is going to make some people feel really old.

The guys at the Manual office could have just sat back and relived the last 20 years for the whole issue, but instead they’re looking forward to pick out 20 people that are going to shape the next 20 years.

I’m writing this without knowing which people Manual have chosen, and I’m not trying to jinx anybody, but I know this article is about people who are relatively new to the game, but who have already made a significant impact. In the next 20 years some of these people might grow up and not have time to make music, some of these people might get on the crack and sell their camera equipment, or stop skateboarding.

Whether or not any of the above happens is irrelevant because what these people have already achieved will have a lasting effect.

Photo by Marcus Skin.

Carlos Garcia Knight

As a terrible writer, when wondering how the hell I was going to frame up this ‘blurb’ on Carlos, I took the easy route: straight to Google. ‘Ingenuity’ was the word I had in mind after dwelling on it for a couple of days; if you know Carlos you’ll understand why that resonated for me, and Google confirmed it. To make a living from snowboarding it’s smart to hedge your bets. In the current environment of content consumption, it’s wise to be everywhere (in a genuine way). It’s interesting to hear people talk about Carlos. Opinions, while positive, can also be so different, depending on what aspect of Carlos’s riding they’ve seen, and I think that’s really cool. He’s a world class competitive snowboarder, he rides it all and has a rad crew of characters that he produces a web series with, he’s in the glossy pages of your favourite snow mags, his social game is tight, and you can still catch him down at the (Insert: snow or skate) park for a lap. Nailing it. | Jay Smith

Boardslide across and down. Photo by Isaac Matz.

Hootie Andrewes

Hootie is a risk taker; he has rocked a lot of questionable ‘fits and a lot of fly ‘fits. One time he stopped buying tapes for a video he was filming to buy a Gucci belt. He’s from the South Island, hopping to Wellington, then on to Melbourne. I get the feeling that if he wasn’t getting free Nikes he’d probably stop skating and start an RnB career. He’s got that annoying natural talent on a skateboard. If he wasn’t out in the streets he’d be getting it on vert just as easily. His name is actually Nicholas. He’s a good pick for this list because he has the potential to leave a legacy in New Zealand and abroad, even if he actually chases an RnB career. Andrew Bevin

Frontside kickflip. Photo by Isaac Matz.

Simon Thorp

I met Simon Thorp near the end of the last century, when he and the R were busily terrorising Auckland street spots as youngsters. Fast-forward 20 years, and Simon is teaching a new breed of rats to skate with his latest venture, The Young Guns Skate School. From infants that still resemble spermatozoa taking their first step on a board, all the way to teenagers desperately wanting to learn to Misty Flip just like him, Simon and his crew are babysitting these kids to superstardom. While some are sent against their will by over-enthusiastic Nyjah-dreaming skate-dads, and some by parents simply wanting a day away from their little shit, most are actually keen to learn how to skate, and because of that, and Simon, the future of Auckland skating is definitely looking bright. There’s no crystal ball to say that any of these kids will be gracing the cover of Manual in 20 years, fakie flipping low-to-high up the Tole Street gap, but fuck, there’s already a 2-year-old with a nappy sponsorship after undergoing Simon’s {Grill}army style training regime, so it’s definitely possible. Keep up the good work, Sime. #WyattSOTY2037 Alex Dyer

Photo by Matt Goodwin.

Casey Foley

In the world of sponsored skating there are those who massage their own egos and then there are those who not only push themselves but also inject wads of health and positivity into the culture. Casey Foley is one of the latter. He really is the complete package. Aside from relentlessly producing footage that stokes out the planet, he’s also a street photography guru. His arsenal of work is already way beyond what you could expect from a lifetime of devotion. Issues of his publication Ducktales are bound to become collector’s items. To top it all off Casey is a super lovely guy who will give time to anyone, no matter what their status. In 20 years’ time I think Casey will have a photography school in Melbourne, Ducktales will be available in VR and he’ll have his own New Zealand postage stamp and a bronze statue in Oamaru. | Morgan Campbell

Ed Bats

Eleven years ago Ed came to New Zealand from a far different place in the world where racist cops with itchy trigger fingers pull loaded guns on young graffiti writers and where it’s also completely unheard of to go skate at a local school ground. He has a uniquely refreshing and different way of looking at life and art due to this and, more recently, his latest extensive artist residency and travels throughout the deeper, darker corners of Europe. Never relinquishing to rules, trends or even advice, Ed surprises and inspires me, and no doubt others around him, constantly. I still don’t think he’s painted a stupid fucking bird or a portrait yet, and never will. Because of his stubbornness and originality he’s going to keep going… far. | Sean Duffell

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