Sergio Yuppie or the “King of Downhill longboarding” is a renowned skateboarder whose humble beginnings are probably unknown to most. He was born in Sau Paolo, Brazil and his longboard of choice is the Sergio Yuppie Slider SY33 Complete Cruiser by Gravity Skateboards. He credits Mike Valley, Duane Peters, Brad Peters, Jon Cardiel, Jeff Budro, and Jamie Thomas as some of the foremost influences in his life. Some of his favourite things are his children, beer, skateboarding and women. Yuppie enjoys hanging out at the YMCA Encinitas, Ladeira Da Morte, Skate House Brazil, and Catalina Island.
Without further ado, let’s get started on the story of an inspirational man who has now seen success in more than one sense of the word — simply because he believed.
Currently residing in Florianopolos, Brazil, Sergio Yuppie is 39 years old. Although his expertise and principal training has been downhill longboarding, Yuppie has expressed that he respects and recognizes all the different styles of skating that exist — whether the downhill slide; downhill; slalom; street; or mini ramp. To him, they all fall under the niche of skateboarding. Yuppie was first introduced to the world of skateboarding when a friend of his cousin’s traded his brand new skateboard for Yuppie’s bike. He did this without the permission of his parents and subsequently got in trouble for it. Yuppie’s mom insisted that he get his bike back but his father was able to convince her that the decision was Yuppie’s.
Long story short
He was able to keep the skateboard. Yuppie recalls getting dirty and sweaty each day as he used his skateboard on the streets of Sau Paolo. However, he paid this no mind as his attention was focused on skateboarding. At the age of 12 to 13, Yuppie was already working so that he could purchase parts for his skateboard. This part of his childhood was not uneventful as a group of skateboarders in his neighborhood attempted to ice him out and taunting him to quit skateboarding. This upset Yuppie greatly.
At this time, Yuppie was constantly watching videos of Fernandinho Batman — a respected and accomplished skateboarder at that time. Inspired by Batman, Yuppie began to enter skateboarding competitions and his first ever tournament was in 1988 at Zona Norte on Avenida Nova. At this point, he had only been skateboarding for a year and was feeling inferior compared to the others who had joined the tournament. That said, he knew he had to come up with a way to stand out. His idol Batman would make his knee touch the ground while sliding, so Yuppie decided to use a helmet and attached a crushed beer can to it using some duct tape. He then did the knee slide and rubbed the beer can against the ground with his head.
Needless to say, people were left dumbfounded by this stunt and this was the beginning of the legend that is Sergio Yuppie. In his words, “Tricks deserve applause, but style deserves respect!” Yuppie strongly believes that being a good skater entails far more than having a few tricks up your sleeve, it also demands having a unique style as this has always been the premise of skateboarding right from the get-go. One day, Yuppie decided to show some of his skateboarding buddies his technique as he skated down a hill. One of them remarked that it was futile to do so as downhill was a “thing of the past”. Yuppie did it anyway and according to him, when he came back up, his friends were completely stunned and asked him to repeat what he had done.
He ended up skating downhill five times in total. Yuppie claims that one of the most unforgettable moments in his life was when at that moment, Tim Brauch told him: “Dude, you HAVE to go to the United States”, as he apparently had never seen anything like that in America. Yuppie says that his entire heart is on skateboarding and the downhill slide in particular. He was first crowned champion in 1990. He had won the downhill longboarding stage of Circular do Bosque Street in Morumbi, Sao Paulo. For the next 21 years, Yuppie went on to win every single downhill slide contest that he had entered in.
King of Downhill Longboarding
Yuppie no sooner earned the moniker “King of Downhill Longboarding”. He feels that this nickname accurately reflects his desire to reach the top. A few years later, after winning more and more competitions, Yuppie had the nickname tattooed on his arm. He felt that it was just another crazy event in the surreal reality that had become his life. If you ask Yuppie what brought him to this point thus far in his career, he chalks it all up to sheer determination, passion, respect, humility and style. Yuppie says that the secret to life is to be at peace with yourself and to appreciating all of your blessings.
If you have your health, you essentially have everything. While he may not be the wealthiest guy out there, Yuppie says that he is happy making a living doing what he loves and that is what matters. He lives with his wife and kids and maintains a simple lifestyle. He feels grateful to be a father to three children: Fernando, Junior and Christian. His career as a skater has always been of utmost importance to him and it is something that he wants to impart to his children as he sees great potential in them. Yuppie recalls that initially, his mother was against him skateboarding.
However, he feels the opposite about his children. Today, they go skateboarding as a family and maintain a very tight bond. Today, Yuppie has the full support of his parents and they are proud of what their son has accomplished. They are happy that he has seen success with his passion and that he is able to function as a provider for his family in the process. Yuppie says that there is a melting pot of emotions that only fellow skateboards will be able to identify with when it comes to how he feels about skateboarding and how beneficial it is to one’s mind and life. He feels extremely fulfilled and considers skateboarding his life.