MLK DAY Coverage: The Top 10 Black Snowboarders of ALL TIME

Obscure file photo

Obscure file photo

If Martin Luther King Jr were a snowboarder, he would have lobbied for cheaper lift tickets, shorter lift lines and equal coverage of halfpipe and slopestyle. Unfortunately, MLK missed out on the action, so we had to come up with something else to pay tribute to him on his 80th birthday. So we present YoBeat’s list of the top ten black snowboarders of all time.

1. Russell Winfield: There has to be a first for everything, and Russell Winfield paved the way for the nine other riders we’re about to talk about. He also made a solid mark on the map as a drunken badass during the glorious Whiskey days. Ask anyone one who remembers when and they will tell you, Russell was a total asshole, who could ride hard and party harder. He’s tough to top.

2. Keir Dillon: Keir is an amazing rider who’s signature trick, the Keir roll, made him much more than just a halfpipe-shredding novelty.  Solid video-parts, contest results, and a long career lock Keir in at number two.

3. Stevie Bell: Stevie said it himself in the Forum release Forum or Against em’, he’s black and he’s good. From his parts in Tech Nine flicks to his banger part in the latest Forum movie, Stevie has become not only our number three pick but also one of the most impressive up and coming pros out there today.

4. Ben Hinkley: Before Shaun White or Travis Rice, there was one household name in snowboarding. Well, actually you probably didn’t know his name, but you did know “that dude who did double front flips in the X Games.” That’s why the lawn dart himself makes our list at number four.

5. Ahmon Stamps: Ahmon Stamps is a northwest staple, his gleaming smile brightening up any opening day. He had a pro model Grenade glove and was known to inform campers of his “favorite place to pass out” in Government Camp while giving the High Cascade tour. That last fact alone puts him at a comfy number five.

6. Gabby Maiden: As the first female on this list, Gabby earned her place with not just good looks and some techy rail moves, but by being easily the most recognized snowboarder, ever. Don’t believe us? Try riding Tahoe with her and not hearing every person yell “Gabby!” as you ride by.

7. Lil John: He might not be technically “pro” but the dude probably puts more money into the snowboard industry than sixty snowboarders combined. Plus, he gets after it. “Yeah” John, lucky number seven.

8. Kory Wright: Not be to confused with the alleged kidnapper Kory Wright, who is very, very white, this Wright is actually originally from the Bahamas. Gaining fame for being from the unlikely locale for a ‘boarder, and an Olympic hopeful, Kory swoops in at number eight.

9. Seal: Google image search Seal and you’ll likely find proof of his snowboard prowess, and word has it he rides with Shaun White. Add his marriage to Heidi Klum and he’s an obvious choice for number nine, beating out other contender such as Coolio, Dre Dog and the Game.

10. Tie: Travis Kennedy and Mitch Reed. They’ve both been dropped from their sponsors at one time or another, but no one will dare call it racism.

26 replies
  1. Russell Winfield
    Russell Winfield says:

    Wow Im an Asshole HUH!!!? Sweet lol.. It was fun while it lasted.. Yeah those were the Whiskey driven snowboard days which are so different then todays Pro’s.. Thanks for the top spot. Holla at ya boy!

  2. ben
    ben says:

    what about Sal Masekala (yeah i know i probably spelled it wrong). I know…he commentates for the x-games, but he still seems legit enough

  3. bObby
    bObby says:

    Russell was a total asshole who I made a bs180 off this cliff bet with over a case of beer. I should have known that with a case of beer on the line Russell would have stopped anything… The legend lives on.

    I love that Kennedy and Reed are in 10th… HAHAHA!!

  4. lucy
    lucy says:

    I have been a hugh fan of Gabby Maiden my kids follow her carrier my daughter googled Gabby to see what she’s been up to and saw this tribute MLK. I want the world to know Gabby Maiden is the real deal. She is kind a beuitful young women inside and outside my daughters look up to Gabby as a role model she truly gives snowboarding a good name and to make your list makes me even prouder that my kids are making great choices in role models.
    Gabby keep up the great work CONGRATS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YOU ARE THE FIRST EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. snowdogg
    snowdogg says:

    Damn you forgot about Snowdogg black snowboarder for Cali with a crazy style on the handrails you guys need to hit him up photodogg/myspace the boy is for real.

  6. Mike
    Mike says:

    Yo guys to fine Snowdogg Carter old pro black snowboarder still killin it on the handrail and jump the man is like 43 year-old ride like a kids still got madd skills and sponsors. you can fine him at

  7. Allyse
    Allyse says:

    Ah I’ve got then all beat…besides Seal. I’m in my 40’s and I’ve been boarding for over 20 years. I owe three boards and I have boarded here and overseas….Love it…shouldn’t matter that I’m a black female…but I must say…I only have to show my lift ticket ONCE. 🙂

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] opportunity to recognize the diversity in snowboarding. Now, a few years back, we made a list of the top ten black snowboarders of all time. Sadly, we had to include a couple musicians and some thugged out white kids to complete the list. […]

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