SBJ/May 1 - 7, 2006/SBJ In Depth

Take it to the bank

Shaun White
Rolling Stone, Sports Illustrated, The Today Show, Jay Leno and a gold medal. No more needs to be said. White rose to the forefront of the action sports world with his performance in Turin, and his crossover ability promises that he’ll remain in the spotlight this summer when he defends his vert skateboarding title at the summer X Games.

Sport: Snowboarding and vert skateboarding
Hometown: Carlsbad, Calif.
Birthdate: Sept. 3, 1986
Agent: Mark Ervin, IMG
Sponsors: Burton Snowboards, Volcom Streetwear, Oakley Eyewear, Birdhouse Skateboards, Adio shoes, Mountain Dew, PlayStation, Target, Ubisoft (electronic gaming company)

Andy Irons
The Hawaii native and three-time world champion lost his World Championship Tour title last year to another big name in surfing, Kelly Slater. This year, he’ll hit the waves with the goal of unseating Slater and regaining his spot atop the surfing world.

Sport: Surfing
Hometown: Kauai, Hawaii
Birthdate: June 24, 1978
Agent: Phil Irons
Sponsors: Billabong, HIC, Von Zipper, Da Kine, Red Bull, Boost Mobile

James “Bubba” Stewart
The young Floridian has won four championships in supercross and motocross in his five years as a professional. Last year, after battling injury, he won three of the five final races.

Sport: Motocross and supercross
Hometown: Haines City, Fla.
Birthdate: Dec. 21, 1985
Agent: David Evans, MX Edge
Sponsors: Kawasaki, Fox Racing, Oakley, Red Bull, Boost Mobile

Ryan Guettler
During last year’s Dew Tour, the 21-year-old BMX wunderkind generated questions as to whether he could become the next Dave Mirra, an action athlete with crossover endorsement success. Guettler won two Dew Cups last year and is expected to win more this year.

Sport: BMX dirt and park
Hometown: Brisbane, Australia
Birthdate: July 17, 1983
Agent: Stephen Astephen, Wasserman Media Group
Sponsors: MirraCo, Vans, Freestyle Watches, Spy, Monster Energy, Alpinestars, Pro-Tec, Kicker

Ryan Sheckler
Regarded as one of the strongest young park skaters around, he gained national attention in 2003, winning the X Games, Gravity Games and Vans Triple Crown. He went on to appear in commercials for Gogurt and Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes.

Sport: Skate park
Hometown: San Clemente, Calif.
Birthdate: Dec. 30, 1989
Agent: Circe Wallace, Octagon
Sponsors: Etnies, Volcom, Almost, Bones wheels, Silver trucks, Ninja bearings, Mob Grip, Oakley, Nixon, CCS, Red Bull, Amp’d Mobile

Gretchen Bleiler
From waving the green flag at the Daytona 500 to appearing beside Matt Lauer on “Today,” the Olympic silver medalist and snowboarding talent has already made her mark this year and will look to expand her reach as the year continues.

Sport: Snowboarding
Hometown: Aspen, Colo.
Birthdate: April 10, 1981
Agent: Peter Carlisle, Octagon
Sponsors: K2, Oakley, The Collection, Snickers, Aspen Snowmass

Danny Way
After following his leap over the Great Wall of China with a jump off the guitar at the Hard Rock Café in Las Vegas, the skateboarder was featured in more than 250 news stories worldwide. Plans are in the works to follow the trick with something even bigger.

Sport: Vert skateboarding
Hometown: San Diego
Birthdate: April 15, 1974
Agent: Darryl Franklin
Sponsors: DC Shoes, Capix Helmets, Ignition cellular, Spy Sunglasses, Plan B Skateboards, Momentum Skate wheels, Independent trucks, Whole Foods, Asterisk (knee brace)

Dave Mirra
The BMX great still appeals to mainstream America, as appearances on MTV’s “Punk’d” and deals with Oxy and T-Mobile highlight. He may have struggled at last year’s Dew Tour, finishing with two thirds and a fourth-place result. But his Q Score still puts him in the top-100 most recognizable athletes.

Sport: BMX vert
Hometown: Greenville, N.C.
Birthdate: April 4, 1974
Agent: Stephen Astephen, Wasserman Media Group
Sponsors: MirraCo, Fox Racing, DC Shoes, Slim Jim, Bell Helmets, Dragon Optics, T-Mobile, Maxxis Tires

Paul Rodriguez
The skateboarder won the last two X Games and has appeared in three Tony Hawk Pro Skater video games. He’s also in the midst of a deal with Universal/Revolution to develop a half-hour sitcom with his comedian father of the same name.

Hometown: Northridge, Calif.
Birthdate: Jan. 31, 1984
Agent: Circe Wallace, Octagon
Sponsors: Mountain Dew, Nike SB, Plan B Skateboards, Fourstar Clothing, Silver trucks, Von Zipper, Ricta, FKD, Ogio, Boost Mobile

Jamie Bestwick
He won the overall Dew Tour and also clinched the best trick at the X Games. The Brit has dominated the BMX vert scene and looks to do it again this year.

Sport: BMX
Hometown: State College, Pa.
Birthdate: July 8, 1971
Agent: Octagon
Sponsors: SoBe, Etnies, Zoo York Clothing, Boost Mobile

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