Steve Alba – 2016

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Having stepped on a skateboard for the first time in third grade, Steve Alba would refine his vertical skateboard skills over the next few years before winning the first pool contest in skateboarding history at the Spring Valley stop of the Hester Series in 1978. From there, the man known as Le Machine would become one of the fiercest and most resilient competitors during the late ’70s golden age of vertical, essentially remaining a cult figure of pool and full pipe skating to this day. Steve famously honed his skills and stamina along with his brother Micke at their local spot, the legendary Pipeline Skatepark in Upland and the notorious Mt. Baldy full pipe, along with countless backyard pools and pipes nationwide.

Joining Santa Cruz in 1979 along with Steve Olson and Duane Peters, the trio unleashed punk rock fury on the skateboarding world as the most feared team since the Z-Boys. Releasing his Salba Bevel model that same year, which contained the first deep side-to-side concave with an upturned nose, Steve established himself as a Santa Cruz pillar, through his video parts in Wheels of Fire, Streets on Fire, and A Reason for Living before the shift to street skating in the early ’90s pushed him underground. Continuing his five decades of hunting for vertical terrain, Steve rejoined the Santa Cruz Veterans team in 2007 and remains a legend in the truest sense of the word.

Jim Goodrich Photo