Born/Raised: Berkley California, raised in Utah and California
Home mountain: Brighton, Utah
Sponsors: Nitro, Volcom, 32, Etnies, Milo, Beta Project, Dragon
Props to: Brandon Ruff and Tim Ostler for being such good friends and Mark Welsh even know he is a dummy
Years Riding: I am not sure but the Gnu anti-gravity was my first board, so however long ago that was.
Tonino is the Headman on hill for High Cascade and at first glance he is one intimidating character. Dressed in all black except for the Iron Maiden patch on the back of his jacket, when people roll up to HCSC's stuff and see Tonino they are scared to do any wrong on his territory.
Tonino ten feet high and rising. Photo: Chris Owen
Tonino is the best man for the job: respected by all, feared by some. He is diplomatic and appreciative with his employees. Back at his home mountain in Brighton he is known as the phantom. He shows up once and a while, kills it, and then disappears. Most people in Utah know of Tonino, but few actually approach him and find out what a great friend he is.
When Tonino was a kid he would ice his driveway so they could play hockey in front of their house. One time his Mom came home and not knowing about the about the new rink slid her car sideways and right into a tree. He was 4'8" and 12 years old when he started playing hockey and used to get stoked when he'd get hit; he loved to bring on the pain even at a young age. Tonino grew but remained fast and decided he had enough of hockey when he rocked his buddy into the boards by accident and broke his collarbone. He seems to actually enjoy getting beat up, but mess with his friends and you're in trouble.
Tonino is proud about whom he rides for and makes sure to be a part of the overall picture. He is involved with R&D and graphics at Nitro; which is apparent when you see boards with names like the shadow and graphics with flames and skulls. He's also very proud of his riding. After telling him he just rocked the highest air of the summer, he said, "Yeah, that was just being lazy and not working on a new trick." I don't know anyone who would consider a 16-foot air lazy.
Tonino doesn't care about the fame and fortune that could be the main goal of someone with his natural talent, style, and ability, but Tonino just wants to ride with his buddies and have a good time along the way. When I think of people who are keeping it real and don't really give a fuck, I think of Tonino. He makes us remember what snowboarding is all about.
What kind of Truck do you have? Ford Bronco 72.
How many trucks have you rolled and how? Three. Every time on black ice.
I heard you did a Disney movie? Yeah, Johnny Tsunami. Kenny and I were stunt doubles until we got kick off. Some kids from out of town complained because we dug a pit in front of their jump and they ate shit.
Rumor has it you also did a calendar dressed up as a fireman with bleached hair and sideburns, is there a story behind it? I was 17 and it made more money than donating blood.
How about your Captain Crunch commercial? Did you get to play the captain? It was actually an Apple Jacks commercial. All I had to do was ride past the camera, but we got to eat tons of good free food.
When and how did you get into metal? This kid in Danville had Metallica and said it was good and I saw that Steve Caballero had a Metallica sticker on his skateboard and from then on I was hooked. I was about 12.
Do you still ride your dirt bike back home in Utah? I try to as much as I can but my trailer broke. There are tons of tracks there to ride.
Is there anyone that you look up to? So many people, that would take me forever, there are so many good people out there and I don't just mean in snowboarding. Johnny Cash and Lemy from Motorhead are two of the many.
How long have you been skating for? Since I was eight.
Are there any parks in Utah? Yeah but they are kind of crappy. JP's ramp is fun it's the old Milo ramp, he got the law in Utah changed so you now can have ramps in your yard. He had to get it changed because of a nosey neighbor. It was so rad.
What does the future hold for Tonino? Hopefully a lot of good memories
What is your favorite hot sauce? All the brand one's are ok but the homemade ones are the best
Here's what everyone else is saying about Tonino:
"Tonino is a workaholic, he seems afraid to sit down always wanting to make camp better and enjoy what he is doing. He doesn't want to let life pass him by, he makes sure he enjoys everything." Wendy Wyvill- Besold
"Tonino does the sickest Christ air laid out backflips." Ben Cooley
"Tonino has real pretty hair." Chris Coyle
"I was scared of Tonino every time I saw him riding around Brighton dressed all in black and now he dates my sister. He isn't as scary as he looks." Dave Doman
"The only guy I know who will get a new pair of boots and paint them black and a new dope jacket and put a maiden patch across the back " Ahmon Stamps
Chris Oakley's favorite Tonino quote "there is so much camo over there it is like a Ted Nugent Rally" when talking about all the new yo kids that had showed up at Brighton.