It's hard to imagine a rider like Sebbe didn't grow up on a world-class mountain. Sebbe de Buck was born, raised, and resides in Antwerp, Belgium - 9 hours from the Alps. The long drives didn't stop him from becoming one of the world's most respected and versatile riders of this generation. Not only has he recently transitioned out of the contest scene, but he is also transitioning to a new board sponsor. We caught Sebbe between tour stops to congratulate him on his latest movie, GET BUCK, and on officially becoming a member of K2 Snowboarding.
Was this your first year riding K2 snowboards?
Yeah, before last year, I was on DC. They were my first sponsor since I was 14, and then they stopped making snowboards. So, I've been talking with K2 for the last year. Eventually, J-Stone made me really big boards, which was the main thing. He made me a 172 Antidote. The board is awesome. I started riding it and everything started rolling from there.
I'm like a one-board pony. I don't want to switch up boards for different terrain. This board holds up in Japan and Alaska, building jumps and riding parks. So, I was hyped to find a brand I like that makes what I am looking for.
172? How tall are you?
I'm around 6'4. No brands make boards like that, really. So now I have finally found a board that works for everything.
Where are you from, and how did you get into snowboarding?
I'm from Belgium. I live in Antwerp City, just north of Belgium. I got into snowboarding because I liked skating from a young age. And my family and I always went to France for one week to go to the mountains. I started skiing when I was about three years old. Because of the skating influence and because I'm a rocket power enthusiast I started snowboarding and eventually got after it.
You've been on DC since 14. Did it just click at a young age?
I think at some point, the word was getting out, and people started noticing. I think my first sponsor was a shop. Then, one of my older friends who knew me got a job at Nike 6.0. It was before Nike Snowboarding. I think I got a pair of shoes. But then, the week after, I got a deal from the Boardriders office. It started with the distribution in Belgium, then went to the European office, and eventually to the US office. It was mellow and slow rolling.
What were you getting recognized for?
Coming from Belgium, well, there were no film crews. There was not a big snowboarding community there. At that point, there was one guy who started a snowboard federation. It was really nice because he pretty much sorted out government money for us to go to the mountains and snowboard. So, I got picked up by them from a very young age. And then, they had a route for me figured out. But my mentality as a young kid used that to put my face into the industry - to get sponsors and to film eventually. It was always my dream as a young snowboarder to ride sleds in Whistler, get dropped off by Helis, and film pow. But to get there, my way was through the competitive career and through the federation. It was very necessary to join the federation and use the funding because I had to travel if I wanted to go snowboarding. We don't have mountains where I live.
How far did you travel to go snowboarding?
The Alps are 9 hours away. So you're not too far, but it's still a trip every time.
So, I'm curious about how you linked with the Beyond Medals crew.
Beyond Medals was started by Kevin and Thor, who got kicked out of the national team, and then they started making fun of it. They started making videos. It went from a YouTube series to... making movies to making some t-shirts to some hoodies, and then it slowly started growing. Now, it's a proper snowboarding outerwear brand. I think they asked me to film with them when we were at an OnBoard session in Levy, Finland. So, when I found some time between contests, I tried to link up with them as much as possible. Now, the last few years, we've just been all in.
All in. It's crazy you've been competing too.
Last year, I stopped working with the federation and quit my competitive career. I finally made the decision that I've always wanted. Just focus on filming. The parts or sections I brought out before last year were always half-assed. You might only have five days before going to the next contest or stuff like that.
BAHAMAS's first fully committed filming season, and you won Video Part Of The Year.
I was like, okay, I'm done with contests. I don't need to stop to go anywhere else. I don't need to stop filming and miss out on good snow. Right when it starts getting good, you have to leave to go to a contest. So, last year was the first time I fully committed to it. It paid off without even thinking about it. At that point, I was just like, yo, get me on my snowboard, I want to go ride. Best decision I ever made.
What's GET BUCK all about?
Me and Willem, we've been friends forever, and we've always talked about making a movie together, but I didn't want to start doing it when I was still doing contests and doing things half-assed. So after I quit competing, we made it happen. We wanted to make a movie that tells a little bit of a story but wanted to stay away from the documentary style.
It's a 20-minute video of snowboarding, just getting hyped, and traveling to different locations all over the world. It has a different editing style. I think it turned out really nice. I couldn't have asked for a better turnout.
I am excited to see it. We all are. So, other than the big boards, what attracted you to K2?
K2 has been a big brand in our industry for a long time. Since I've been on DC since I was 14, I never really had to think about other brands. So, I was a little punk and thought every brand was wack except for DC. I had to start changing my opinions. Having that door open for me, I began to look at other brands and found that K2 just put together a brand new team in the States. With signing, like Sage and Gabe and a lot of other riders. People I like shredding with. It felt all very natural and was a nice switchover.
It's a big change for me to come from half of my life riding for one brand to now. Change boards, bindings, boots, and clothing. There's been a lot of changes in the last two years, but it's super fun and very exciting.