By Andres Pachon
A. Pachon, a journalist and skateboard addict, is a full-time writer for SHIT® Magazine.
Opened in January 1993, Tampa Pro AKA SPoT was opened to the public and have ever since been at service for skateboarders from all over the world. The skatepark features a terrain park-style, offering a pyramid, rails and transitions. The "beginner's course" features many smaller rails and ramps to expand skateboarding skills and also includes the famous SPoT bowl.
The first competition in the park was held back in 1995 and was won by Mike Vallely. Since then, some of the biggest names in the industry have been at the top of the event, names like Paul Rodriguez, Shane O'Neill, Jagger Eaton, and Nyjah Huston who won the event back in 2014 and regained the champion title in 2020.
One of the biggest particularities of this event is that the SPOT is redesigned each year for the event, contemplating new obstacles and disposition of the spaces to prevent for the event spectators and skaters themselves to get used to the park which creates new excitement each year, keeping the event current and innovative.
The world's best riders from Argentina, Brazil, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Japan, Russia, the United States and more, compete each year on the 3-day event to be the best park riders on the SPoT and perhaps be noticed by some of the sponsors of the event including Monster, Nike SB, Street League, Bones Bearings, Independent Trucks, Bones Wheels, and Girl to name a few. Only professional skateboarders who have [or had] a pro model signature board with an internationally recognized brand are able to compete in this event.
Judging at Tampa Pro
Illustration: Tampa Pro
Tampa Pro uses a five-judge panel of skaters that have a deep knowledge of the skateboarding industry. Using a 100 point scale, judges assign scores based on the following factors: the difficulty of tricks, style, technique, variety of tricks, flow, consistency, originality, and whatever else a skater can bring to their run. The high and low scores are dropped, the remaining three scores are averaged to determine a final score. Second run scores are used to break any ties.
The battle-royal style event offers different cash prices among participators that win in the 3 different categories in which the event is divided:
Tampa Pro Street Park Event
$65,500 divided between the 1st place gaining $20,000 2nd: $15,000, 3rd: $10,000 and all the way to the 12th spot in the competition that can get $1,000
Tampa Pro Independent Trucks Best Trick Contest
$7,500 divided between the 1st place getting $3,000, 2nd: $2,000, 3rd: $1,000, 4th: $750 and all the way to 5th place gaining $750 cash
Tampa Pro “Random Cash”
$2,000 cash is given to skateboarders that performs some cool SHIT® and random worthy highlights throughout the events weekend! The event also features concerts, activities and contests among attendants and even an after-party on the final day of the event!
The Tampa pro has been the SHIT® for over 20 years, a signature event in skateboarding and we are pretty sure it will continue to be so for many years to come!
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