Name: Raul Ruiz
Age: 25
Sponsors: Fit Bike Co, Dan’s Comp, iPath
Location: Los Angeles

Frame: Fit WiFi, 20.5″
Fork: Fit Blade II
Headset: FSA
Stem: Fit DLR
Handlebars: Fit Sky High
Grips: Fit Techs
Tires: Fit FAF
Cassette: Primo Mix
Front Hub: Primo N4
Rims: Primo Balance
Cranks: Fit
Pedals: Fit PC
Chain: Shadow Interlock
Sprocket: Fit Crossfit, 25t
Seat: Fit Barstool
Post: Fit Pivotal
Clamp: Integrated
Pegs: Fit OGs

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The interview starts with me giving a Raul call on Memorial Day.

What you been on lately dude?
Ahh, nothing much man, just chilling, about to ride with the homies…

I bet you’ll enjoy that, hopefully security will be chill on Memorial Day…
[Laughter] Yeah man, we’re about to go ride downtown actually…

Overall, how do you like your bike to be?
Well, I always rode a 20.5″ [frame], which is short to most, but I’m a short dude. I’ve rode longer frames, but I like it. I like my back end short; my whole bike small. Like a lil’ trick bike, you know what I mean? Kinda under my feet, nice and tight. Just like my women! [plenty of laughter on both ends]

So the stuff you’re riding now–do you even customize anything or just run things stock now?
I was riding 8 inch bars, then I upgraded to 8.25″ and I cut ’em just a little bit, so they felt better…so I trimmed the bars a lil’ bit, what else did I do…that’s about it, it’s pretty much stock. Maybe the forks…I trimmed the forks a little bit–shortened the steerer tube…

You mentioned that your bikes have changed a bit over the years and that it’s changed tricks and riding for you. How have your bikes changed over the years and how has that affected your riding?
Yeah, I was definitely rocking the tall ass seat post back in the day ’cause I thought that it would help out my bars[pins], but now I got my seat completely slammed, I got a slim seat…and I can still bar the same, you know? It’s easier I think…wider bars, you get more leverage on your bike, so it got way better. I upgraded all of that shit, know what I mean?

How did you get on Fit, and how long you been with them for?
I was riding for Failure before Fit and that was the first company that offered me to be on their team. I think I was on that for about a year…but all the homies were on Fit and it was all local and shit…the homie Nick Benson, he got me on the amateur team–it was the homie Jackson and George Ramirez…and as the years went, they did their own thing and I stayed on and ever since then, it’s been about two years.

How has filming been going?
It’s been chill lately. I’ve been filming for Dan’s more…we already went on a bunch of Fit trips to Tennessee, Texas, bunch of other places with Stew…Oregon…we’ve been stacking. Shitty and Van…I seen them guys do some good shit! I got some good stuff that I’m psyched on already.

That’s tight. Where else are you going? You got any plans for the projects you’re working on this year?
I don’t have any plans with Fit or Dan’s as of right now, but I’m going to f*cking New York this year, man. Like, that’s my resolution this year. I want to go after my birthday–my birthday’s next month, in June, so I wanna go after, just a lil’ bit after that. I wanna be in NY, that’s my biggest goal. If it’s on my own, I’m goin’ to NY, dude. It’s gonna be sick.

You never been there before?
Nah, man…I only been to Boston. Sean Burns flew me out to Boston a year or two ago for the Bonedeth video. He flew me out, got me a round trip and I stayed out there for like two and a half weeks, and it was SICK. It was spots everywhere…so I wanna get out to NY man. You been out there man?

Nah man, I’ve been trying to go forever…I’m from Chicago so I wanna see what the even bigger city is all about, you know?
Yeah dude! I even wanna go to Chicago too, man…the homie Chris Brown has been there twice and Tony Malouf’s from out there too…but I wanna go to NY, ’cause…we chill with them; Tom [White] and Ed [De La Rosa], we’ll ride with them for a couple of days and they’ll be like, “yeah, you need to get out here man, like, ‘what the f*ck?!’ We come out here, you know what I’m saying?!” So we’d ridden with them for a couple separate weeks at a time and it was like, “damn, man…” I feel like all these opportunities are slipping…like Barcelona, I need to go there too…this is the year where I need to step it up. Because…it’s already getting too late, dude.

I feel you man. How old are you now?
I’m about to be 26.

Raul, ice to smith on one of Long Beach's most hit up ledge spots. Photo: Brady

It seems like you’re in a good spot to have some shit pop off and get to the places you feel like you need to this year…
Yeah. Dan’s has been helping out a lot, doing a ton of shit…the video stuff that we’ve done…they got my back.

[We chat a bit more about random topics and then get back to New York City]

Yeah man…I only need a roundtrip ticket. I can take care of myself while I’m there…you know, I’m sure I can find a place to chill at…actually, we’ve been talking about it with the homies, at the Quintin barbecue…Andrew Jackson, Jordan Ratima…get all the LA homies over there.

Yeah, West Coast meets East Coast, that’d be tight as hell…
Hell yeah.