Author: Ladies and gentlemen of the jury. Who do you find more attractive? Dylan Rieder or Austyn Gillette?
Reader: What is the point of all this?
Author: I feel so confident of my sexuality that I can waste the reader's time by rating the skate hunks.
Skateboarders used to be punk rock, they used to be dirty, they used to be an ugly and ignored underlayer of filth that society pretended didn't exist. Sure, there were a few diamonds in the rough, but mostly skateboarders were scumbags, even if they were blessed genetically, their filthy clothes and torn shoes would exclude them from the catwalks of Milan.
Recently though, some truly beautiful examples of the human form have appeared within our culture. You only have to flick on ESPN to see Dylan 'dreamboat' Rieder wiping sweat from his perfectly formed brow, or Paul 'perfection' Rodriguez hiding his immaculate face under his Mountain Dew cap so that the less fortunate skaters on today's contest circuit are not put off their stroke.
These beautiful young things are not just contained to Rob Dydek's private wankbank, some are available for your viewing pleasure whilst simply and aesthetically cruising the streets. Have you seen Alex Olsen lately?! That brooding piece of ribeye steak can be found hopping lengthways over your local picnic table dressed as a non pirate version of Johnny Depp on the reg.
I realise that 'Team Handsome' has been touched by Rob Brink, but I feel a deeper, more in-depth review needed to be done to give these delicious specimens the credit that their perfect genes deserve.
So, without delay, here is a full breakdown of today's most beautiful skateboarders.
Sometimes it's more of the way someone carries themselves, than their physical looks that attracts you to them, but in the case of Enrique - with his natural Spanish tan, immaculate dress sense and constant smile (and to be fair, why wouldn't he be smiling?) - you really get the whole package. Not many can pull off skating in shorts at all, and making jean shorts work used to be an impossibility. Well it was until Mr. Lorenzo breezed his way into Trilogy with effortless pushing via his sun-kissed masculine stems - covered only by carpenter denim and Axion footwear, and I'm sure glad he did or the world may not have had the chance to see those delightful legs. A true sight to behold. If it wasn't for his terrible and uninformed voice-over on the World Box-set (yes, my ideal skate hunk has to have brains too) he would have scored even higher.
Enrique Lorenzo - 7.5/10
Although not what I would describe as a hunk as such, Dylan had to be included due to his notoriety on the skandsome scene. With a perfect shaped face, flowing locks, effortless lifestyle and immaculate smoking technique, I can see why he is ranked highly on the skate hunk richter scale, but unfortunately his waif like frame just doesn't rattle my tectonic plates. Although he definitely skates like a real man, his appearance simply does not match his powerful Impossible manliness. My mum always used to say that she'd "feel safe in those arms" when watching Bruce Willis films. In Dylan's puny McDonald's straw sized arms however, I'd be constantly petrified.
Dylan Rieder - 7/10
Now we are talking my language. Moving swiftly on from waif like model to this muscle bound piece of man meat.
After a shaky start in the skate world, it is now not only acceptable to like Sheckler, but almost essential. Sure as a 3 year old pro and 6 year old TV star, he was more cute than hunky, but today the still dangerously young (but delectably legal) Ryan has sculpted himself into the almost godlike San Clemente man that we know and love. With chiselled good looks, vicious skin art and abs you could grate cheese on, it bewilders me that this gnarly rail 360flip lipslider, with thousands of screaming fans, still can't find a chill girl!
Ryan Sheckler 8/10
Some of the younger skate hunk appreciators out there may not know even know of Jovontae and his textbook 360 flips, or may not have seen his flawless outfits during his lines around EMB in Love Child (please try and forgive his mustard Airwalk NTS. Although reportedly he was running three shoe sponsors at the time, I guess if you're that spoiled for choice, your selection may get a bit muddied, and to be fair he even managed to pull them off somehow). If you haven't seen these videos, please do yourself a favour and savour the flavour of this originator before we break down this style icon. From his Planet Earth section, his Girl parts, his fixed gear era and now with his own company, Jovontae has always looked the part (he understandably models his own gear). From back when he was an O.G EMB (Embarco's Most Beautiful) member to today, his chiseled jawline, muscular physique and dazzlingly sculpted hair has kept him constantly on the forefront of fashions. In summary, Turner is always ahead of his time and always a head turner (the word play here should be recognised).
Jovontae Turner - 7.5/10
Italians are known for expensive and beautiful things, and this divine Scaloppine is no exception. From his groundbreakingly casual James Dean-esque dress sense in Snuff, to his camo endeavour in Trilogy and beyond (but not as far as the brown cord Chocolate era) - Gino is always immaculately dressed. Don't get it twisted though, Gino is much more than a mannequin for the perfect kit. You like tall, dark and handsome? Well Gino's got you covered, son. That year round tan, perfect length stubble and just-got-out-of-bed but oh so gorgeous brunette locks make Mr. Iannucci a force to be reckoned with in the looks department. Plus, now he has stopped drinking his keg should slowly be turning back into a six pack which (when confirmed) will up him to a nine... as long as he doesn't go back to his goatee phase.
Gino Iannucci - 8/10
Although a relative newcomer to the scene, Spencer is a true and undeniable skhunk. Blasting into skating a few years back with some hearty frontside halfcab flips, I was at first mistaken that he was simply another shaved headed youngster with quick feet. How wrong I was, after a few more sponsors the interviews started coming in thick and fast and with these stationary high def cameras pointed at his face, I knew very quickly that he was going to make 'the list'. Flannel shirts used to be reserved for the more hesh guys (with the exception of Jovontae and a few memorable other tech guys) but Spencer rocks that shit with a gold chain and a smile and by god does he pull it off (much like some of you may be doing whilst looking at the above photo). Oh, and the eyes. Those smouldering baby blues. Are you kidding me? I got lost in them from day one. Taking all this on board, Expedition One's poster boy earns himself a scarily high rating.
Spencer Hamilton - 8.5/10
Pretty much Spencer's boss these days, but fellow Expedition hunk, Rob Welsh doesn't just share a sponsor with with the above skhunk. Facial hair and a face that is extremely easy on the eye are two other similarities that immediately spring to mind. Rob is different though, very different. Through his career he has jumped from the freshest gold front wearing king-of-camo Welsh to the slightly more rugged, wild haired man we see today. As one of the only people on the planet capable of rocking a trucker cap with dignity, Rob must be highly commended. Whatever stage of dressing we see the illusive Rob Welsh in, he is always immaculate and each formation is a pleasant surprise.
Oh and I don't want to dilute this article with any pesky skate talk, but if you are reading this, Rob - you know we all want another part from you. I know you want to go out on top and possibly believe in the back of your mind that you couldn't better your previous efforts, but a single line consisting of a nose slide pop out, a 360flip and a nice manual would more than suffice. Just chuck some gloves on your hands and a ciggy in your mouth and I'll be content for another decade.
Rob Welsh - 7.5/10
The Second Coming of the good lord, Steve Olson - Alex was immaculately conceived (and true to form, keeps himself immaculately presented at all times) with the sole intention of making the world a better looking place. He has achieved his goal ten fold. His holier than thou attitude is not only warranted due to birthright but also totally understandable due to his insane good looks. He may come across as 'too cool' to some, but how would you act with a face and thoroughbred such as his? Not a fan of gimmicks - his nondescript shoes, blue jeans and a white tee shirt are the only tools young Alex needs to make every single man and woman he encounters fall for his charms.
A textbook dreamboat whose looks can be enjoyed even more in 3D.
Alex Olson - 8/10
Brian 'Slash' Hansen
An unorthodox hunk for sure, but a hunk none the less. The king of the new age of beardies. Like many before him (Lee Ralph, Gareth Stehr and Elissa Steamer) Slash is a one of those many beautiful skaters that avoid the attention by playing down their looks by covering themselves in extreme facial hair. In some worlds Brian would be known as a bear, but to me he is simply a real man's man, and as a man - what could be better than that? Slash is funny, has an encyclopaedic skate knowledge (of Vista at least) and owns a stake in a beer company. You could definitely do a lot worse.
Brian Hansen - 6.5/10
"You're fit, but my gosh don't you know it!" spoke the monotone Mike Skinner, as he mocked girls that were aware of their beauty and used that beauty to manipulate the fairer sex (males). However, this statement couldn't be more wrong for Kenny - for one, he is not a girl (and thank GOD for that!) and he totally doesn't know how beautiful he is. This glorious virile example of a skhunk backside noseblunts his way through life completely unaware of his splendid tan, high cheek bones or magnificent hair. I am unsure of his genetic makeup or his ancestry, but if you could bottle all that, it would sell like the hottest, brownest, most delicious and irresistible Chocolate hot cakes.
Kenny Anderson - 8.5/10
We all know that actions speak louder than words, and whilst Sewa's robotic nollie frontfoot flips may be equivalent to just a small mumble - his chain adjustments, assertive head nods and determined attitude make him sound even louder than Shane Heyl working as a town crier when Shake Junt inevitably goes into receivership. Kroetkov may only know a handful of English words, but this modern day Drago simply lets his face do the talking, oh and his body. I haven't seen him topless yet (please supply a link if there is any footage) but just from the arms, you can tell that he's an Adonis.
Sewa Kroetkov - 7.5/10
A bit of an obvious one here, but Paul is undeniably as good to watch off a board as he is on one. Another skhunk that has gone down the shaggy hair/stubble combo route, and it's paid off. If he keeps growing those luscious locks, they might even curl up and cover that awful Mountain Dew logo on his cap. Much as I had Natalie Portman picked as hot (see, I DO like girls) when she was a tween in Leon The Professional, I knew Paul was going to be drop dead gorge' way back when he was channeling Mariano on City Stars. A little short for my tastes, but in this case good things really do come in small packages.
Paul Rodriguez - 7.5/10
Whilst I'm not usually a fan of the Canadian look, Mark is an uncomplicated exception and sticks out like a perfectly formed thumb from the crowd. Once again, that winning formula of scraggy hair and sporadic stubble really makes his face pop off. Usually sweating, Appleyard puts in the work without putting in the effort. With his arms hardly moving as his wonderful body performs numerous nollie flip crooks on strange hubbas, you'd be forgiven to think that this lack of exercise would mean lacklustre limbs, but somehow Apples still has awesome appendages.
Mark Appleyard - 7.5/10
Whilst it was impossible to clarify a clear winner, it's good to have a reference point for when you get the chance to hang out with one of these beauties. For example; if Dylan offers you a line of nose junk and gestures to the bathroom, feel free to pop back here and check that he is deserving of your time (he definitely is).
Other notable skate hunks worthy of a mention include Alphonso Rawls (who has been holding down a steady hunk factor for the past two and half decades - his arms just get better with age), Kane Sheckler (something for the younger generation or pedophiles amongst the skate community), Scott Oster and Christian Hosoi (both deserve a longevity award for staying beautiful throughout some long and turbulent times), Peter Bici (discovered before I could get my hands on him and modelled throughout the 90s), and other current skaters who sit just on the cusp of full scale skhunkiness - Jake Johnson, Leo Romero and Chad TimTim spring to mind, keep up the good work lads and sleep easy knowing that you almost made the list.
If anyone has someone else to add, feel free to leave some suggestions in the comment section.