Candy Jacobs – ‘I love flowing, creating lines, and challenging myself’

Words: Miljan Milekić

Back in 2020, during the pandemic and global lockdowns, we caught up with Dutch skater Candy Jacobs, for one of our favorite interviews about many, many great things she was doing, and had done at the time. Three years later, she is still going strong, dropping an amazing new part, ‘Olliebiëst,’ for legendary Birdhouse, and we simply had to get in touch again. This time, we didn’t go that much in-depth, but we got to talk about the new part, having Birdman himself – Tony Hawk, as the “boss,” and the chance to see her at the Paris Olympics. Check it out below!

Hi Candy! How are you? What you’ve been up to lately?
Candy: Been working on getting a new skatepark for my city, organizing some events, getting rid of some injuries, and as always working on the mental health game.

READ MORE: Check our interview with legendary Brazillian skater Luan Oliveira

Your new part is finally here. How does it feel to share it with the world?
Candy: It was a while in the making, and I think most skateboarders agree that as soon as you put something out you’ve already got better, so I can’t wait to start on the next one again.

So, tell me more about the ‘Olliebiëst.’ How long did you work on this one, and what did the process look like?
Candy: I started filming for this part as soon as I found out I got on Birdhouse. My boards weren’t even in the mail, so I bought some Birdhouse boards at the local shop and started filming with Hans van Dorssen. I wasn’t sure if I was filming a part at all, but I was just really grateful to be a part of such a rad team and get some tricks in on the streets. Meanwhile, I was still trying to qualify for the Olympics, so I had to pick the spots wisely and didn’t go ham. After a few weeks of filming, I went to 5-0 this square rail, but I decided to ollie the stairs first as a warm-up. I forgot I don’t really skate stairs, so I kicked my board out, injured my knee, and had to get surgery. Not only I could not film, but I also wasn’t sure if I would be back on time for the Olympics. After the Olympics, I had a little extra time to film. Got one week in with Chris Gregson who is such a great tour guide, filmer, and human being.

One thing I absolutely love about it is that it focuses more on the lines than on simply stacking hammers. Not that it lacks big tricks, but to me, it feels like you wanted to show how beautiful and fun skateboarding can be, which is something that often gets forgotten in the trend of chasing the bigger, faster, and gnarlier. Am I on the right track here, and was it something you imagined from the start?
Candy: It is a mix of a lot of things. Most of my part was filmed during the Dutch winter, which means you have to pick your spots smart and have a little bit of a plan. Also, I just love flowing, creating lines, and seeing how I can, kind of, challenge myself. I was a little bit insecure when I put out about missing the “bangers,” but as mentioned before, I was also qualifying for the Olympics, so I didn’t want to risk it all. Can’t wait for the time when I can invest some more time in skating specific spots and tricks I still want to show. 

The part is out for Birdhouse, who you work with for a while now. How did it all start, and how does it feel to be part of a company and team like that?
Candy: Tony Hawk slid in my DM’s a few years ago. I thought it was a joke at first. Chris told me he put in a good word for me so I wouldn’t be surprised if I got a message. The first thing I did was call my mom and I told her: “I think my life just changed.” It’s such an honor to be able to ride for a brand that has meant so much for the industry and the way the public views skateboarding. I sent Blackriver, the brand I was riding for at that time – and still ride for their fingerboards at the moment – a message and told them about it, they are like family to me. Martin, the chief, told me: “Go for it! That is a no-brainer if the Birdman wants you on Birdhouse!”

And how does it feel to have a “boss” whose name is a synonym for skateboarding with millions of people around the world?
Candy: It still feels like a dream sometimes. (laughs) When we hang out, it’s super normal – but when he sends me a text, and I see his name on the screen, my young skater heart still makes a little jump. It’s such a wild one.

So, what is next for you? I know that you are currently recovering from a knee injury, but I know you’re not the person who can just do nothing. Do you have any upcoming projects you would like to let us know to keep our eyes on?
Candy: I definitely hope to film another part, and who knows, one day have my name on a Birdhouse board. But that, as we call it in the Netherlands, is “future music.” Who knows what will happen? Something rad always pops up on my path, so let’s see what happens. As long as it involves skateboarding, traveling, and meeting new people, I am up for it.

READ MORE: Check our interview with Calgary-raised, Joshua Tree-based songwriter and skateboarder Reuben Bullock, frontman of the indie folk band Reuben And The Dark

Back in 2021, you were supposed to compete at the Tokyo Olympics, the first ever that included skateboarding, but the experience turned into nothing short of a nightmare for you. With Paris 2024 just over a year away, what are the chances of finally seeing you drop in on the Olympic stage?
Honestly, I still have some arrows pointed toward Paris 2024. It’s kind of a weird one because somehow I am trying to get “redemption,” but I also know it won’t make up for missing the first-ever Olympics. I am already in the qualifying process, but it’s been wild. My first contest back, I was still recovering mentally from the Tokyo debacle, and I still struggle with it sometimes especially being back at a contest where there are banners everywhere with Olympic rings on them. Contest skating has always been something that gives me that little extra edge and gets my fire going, so it makes sense for me to be there. I do realize even more than I did before that it’s definitely about the journey and not the destination.

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*Interview edited for length and clarity

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