Monster Energy is proud to interview street skate innovator Matt Berger from Kamloops, Canada, on Episode 42 of the sports and pop culture podcast UNLEASHED with The Dingo and Danny.
CORONA, Calif., Oct. 17, 2022 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ — Get ready for a session with one of the most technical skateboarders in the game! Monster Energy is proud to interview street skate innovator Matt Berger from Kamloops, Canada, on Episode 42 of the sports and pop culture podcast UNLEASHED with The Dingo and Danny.
Recorded inside Monster Energy headquarters in Corona, California, this 50-minute episode tells the inspiring origin story of the 28-year-old skateboard phenom who went from small-town beginnings to competing in skateboarding’s biggest stadium events as part of the sport’s elite – all the way to the Olympics.
Speaking on the Olympics, Monster Energy’s Berger said on UNLEASHED: “The hardest part for me was not being able to see my family. I was lucky as a skateboarder; it was cool to make it into the Olympics. But this wasn’t my end all, be all. It just suddenly showed up as an opportunity.”
Raised in a small town in British Columbia, Matt Berger asked for his first skateboard at age 5. Supported by his father, who also captured his son’s ahead-of-his-age tricks on camera, the prodigy earned his first flow sponsorship at age 10. Endorsed by skateboard icon Rodney Mullen, he moved on to full-blown sponsored status at eleven – and proceeded to make his mark as one of the most technical (and consistent) riders on the circuit. Berger won Damn Am Canada in 2009 and made history in 2014 as the first amateur to compete with big-ticket pros on the Street League Skateboarding (SLS) series. Pro since 2015, he’s earned two X Games medals, dropped legendary video parts, and represented Canada in the Tokyo Olympics. And no, his last name is not pronounced ‘burger’!
Get inside the mind of the progression-driven street skater in conversation with the two podcast hosts, Australian action sports personality Luke “The Dingo” Trembath, and professional snowboarder Danny Kass on Episode 42 of UNLEASHED. Also joining the interview, acclaimed painter, model, and UFC numbers girl Brittney Palmer contributes questions and background information to the episode. Tune in right here.
When it comes to breeding grounds for skateboard talent, Kamloops, a small town in British Columbia, is not exactly topping the list. “I tell people it’s about four hours east of Vancouver on the West Coast. It’s at the center of British Columbia,” said Berger while pointing out the town’s central location for snowboard exploration. But growing up in this mountain environment, Berger got his first skateboard at age 5. “I got it for Christmas, and it was right when the Tony Hawk game came out.”
Initially, Berger would skate during the warm months of the year and snowboard in the winter. Aside from skate magazines, he was inspired by older local skateboarders before being inspired by Canadian pro riders Chris Haslam, Rick McCrank, and Wade DesArmo. In those days before the internet, young amateur riders needed to rely on home-made videos to get noticed – and Berger’s father filmed a highlights reel at age 9. “Your avenue to get seen was to send footage out to a PO Box in California,” said Berger on UNLEASHED. “I sent out one promo per year for three years and never heard back.”
Finally, one of those “dad cam” videos caught the attention of the most prolific skateboard innovator on the planet: Original Bones Brigade member Rodney Mullen, who one day called the Berger household out of the blue when young Matt was only 11. “My mom came to the backyard, and she said, ‘Rodney Mullen is on the phone. You need to answer it.’ I first thought she was trolling me, but it was him.”
It’s an unspoken rule in skateboarding that if Rodney Mullen thinks you’re good – most likely you are! Berger landed a spot on Almost skateboard and joined the long list of famous Mullen protegees that includes the likes of Daewon Song and Chris Cole. Sending clips to Mullen for critique, Berger’s progression was off the charts. “The guy created the tricks I was trying to learn!”
Aside from being able to learn complicated tricks, Berger also developed a level of consistency that stood out in contests. He won the Damn Am Canada contest in 2009 and kept progressing with his own blend of ultra-technical tricks, which he took to bigger and burlier obstacles than the average street skater.
He made history in 2014 as the very first amateur to compete in the high-level Street League Skateboarding (SLS) promotion. He earned his ticket in a qualifier contest in Downtown Los Angeles in a field of 24 top pros – and put it all on the line. “During that period, I only had 700 bucks to my name and living on Felipe Gustavo’s couch,” said Berger, acknowledging that the contest changed his trajectory.
In 2015, he finally turned pro for Flip Skateboards, a legendary company with roots in Europe known for sponsoring icons like Monster Energy’s Rune Glifberg. “You’re not pro until you get a board with your name on it,” said Berger about the significance of earning a pro model. “Obviously, that’s the dream, growing up watching Flip Skateboards.”
Although Berger is consistent enough to place top ten in big-ticket street competitions, his talent really shines in progressive video parts that require full focus and dedication. As fate would have it, video parts also earned him X Games medals: bronze and silver, from Real Street video competitions. “I enjoy both just as much,” said Berger about riding contests versus video parts, “it’s all a balance for me.”
And although his talent can hardly be limited to competitions alone, Berger’s record earned him a chance to represent Canada in the Tokyo Olympics.
Want to hear it from Monster Energy’s Matt Berger himself? Visit the landing page to access Episode 42 of the UNLEASHED with The Dingo and Danny Podcast featuring X Games medalist and Olympic skateboarder Matt Berger.
Episodes of UNLEASHED are filmed on a special set inside Studio M at Monster Energy headquarters in Corona, California. The podcast is hosted by the dynamic duo of Australian action sports personality Luke “The Dingo” Trembath and professional snowboarder Danny Kass. Known for their deep roots in action sports culture, the two starred in the beloved cult TV show ‘The Adventures of Danny and The Dingo’ on Fuel TV for five action-packed seasons in the early 2010s. Both hosts have walked the walk as pro snowboarders and possess the interview skills to find common ground with guests from any type of background – sports and pop culture. Always look out for new episodes dropping bi-weekly on Mondays.
The UNLEASHED with The Dingo and Danny Podcast is here to celebrate the personalities behind the Monster Energy lifestyle. With each episode dedicated to a unique guest or topic, listeners learn about living on the edge and advancing the state-of-the-art in the world of high-energy sports as well as music, games, and pop culture from individuals at the top of their game. More than a drink, Monster Energy is a way of life lived by athletes, sports, bands, believers, and fans – and the podcast is an extension of this unique DNA.
For more on Monster Energy and the UNLEASHED Podcast, visit http://www.monsterenergy.com. Also, follow Monster Energy on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok for exclusive content and athlete features.
About Monster Energy
Based in Corona, California, Monster Energy is the leading marketer of energy drinks and alternative beverages. Refusing to acknowledge the traditional, Monster Energy supports the scene and sport. Whether motocross, off-road, NASCAR, MMA, BMX, surf, snowboard, ski, skateboard, or the rock and roll lifestyle, Monster Energy is a brand that believes in authenticity and the core of what its sports, athletes, and musicians represent. More than a drink, it’s the way of life lived by athletes, sports, bands, believers, and fans. See more about Monster Energy, including all of its drinks, at http://www.monsterenergy.com.
Kimberly Paige Dresser, Indie Agency, Inc., (949) 300-5546, [email protected]
SOURCE Monster Energy