A new amateur skateboard series has emerged in the Lone Star state and it is quickly
becoming a formidable proving ground for young shredders across the southwest. Called
the RAT Tour (Regional Amateur Tour), the series began in 2009 with events in Dallas,
Austin, San Antonio and Houston. In year number one, the competitions took place in hightraffic
mall locations on a portable mini-ramp built by Dallas based pro vert skater Mike
Crum and the crew at Push Productions. The impressive mini-ramp measured 30’ x 40’ with
5-foot walls and a 7-foot extension.
In 2010, the series shifted to public skate parks in select cities and added two more events
for a total of six. The new format included both street and bowl competitions and in addition
to the high-energy skating action, RAT events feature other lifestyle elements including
music from the Skullcandy DJ, local artists doing work live on-site in the Sector 9
“Inspiration Station”, a photo display featuring pic’s from previous RAT events in the
Skateboarder Magazine “Reflection Section” and various other interactive vendor displays.
The RAT Tour was created by Bill Geiger, who continues to personally organize and produce
the series. “I grew up skateboarding in San Antonio back in the early 70’s and never
stopped participating”, said Geiger. “after spending 20+ years working in a corporate sales
environment, I decided it was time to focus on something that would be more fun, and best
of all, I would not have to answer to anyone but myself. I am stoked to come full circle and
be working in the action sports industry.”
Geiger’s professional background is in advertising and marketing, but he has been a lifetime
participant in all board sports including skating, surfing, snowboarding and wakeboarding.
Thanks to some serious non-endemic sponsor support (SCION, McDonalds, Cricket Wireless,
US Marines) and strong industry partnerships (Skateboarder Magazine, Skullcandy, Sector
9, Neff, Theeve Trucks, Element,) the RAT Tour has really gained momentum quickly…it’s a
grassroots series on steroids!
”Texas has always had strong skateboard culture and all of the cities that we have been
visiting with this series are filled with very talented skaters!” said Geiger, “Our ultimate goal
was to create a series of events that would give young skaters an opportunity to get
together with their friends, show off their skills and compete in a relaxed, fun
In order to avoid the brutal summer temperatures inherent to the region, the schedule has
been split into a spring and fall series. There are six events total and $15,000 in cash and
prizes up for grabs plus some “bonus” awards for the overall point’s champions in street
and bowl. The 2012 spring series kicks off March 24th in Baton Rouge, LA., followed by
stops in Houston, TX April 21st and Oklahoma City, OK on May 5th. The fall leg kicks off
September 22nd in Boerne, TX (just west of San Antonio) followed by an event iat Austins
new House Skate Park and then wraps up back in Dallas, Geiger’s home market.
Visit the web site again for more information and full re-caps of every RAT event including
pictures and video edits.