The racer in the picture is 25-year-old Graham Buksa on his specially designed Rayne longboard, the skateboard design that is now sweeping the skateboard community.
As the name implies, it is a long board up to 48 inches long [125 cm] and nine inches wide [25 cm]. Most regular boards are much smaller. Graham designed it and made one for himself while studying biochemical engineering at the University of Alberta in Edmonton.
His design caught the attention of skateboarders at the university and they asked him to make some for them.
He made a few on order — until those orders began piling up. Being an entrepreneur at heart, he did what all good entrepreneurs do. He put biochemical engineering on hold, formed a company and became a skateboard industry leader. He was 21.
Where did the name Rayne come from?
“Dick, like most important decisions, it was created over a pitcher of beer. Rayne was chosen from ‘reign’ or control and ‘rain’ as a natural stimulant for growth, two qualities I have tried to ingrain in the company. The spelling was chosen to reflect uniqueness.”
He moved production to Vancouver to take advantage of the hills and longer snow-free season. As orders came in he added staff and a full line of accessories, including apparel. Rayne longboards and apparel are now sold through over 50 outlets across Canada, the U.S. and his website, which reaches skateboarders wherever they gather.
Graham did not set out to become a manufacturer. He enjoyed skateboarding and simply felt there was a better way to design a skateboard. His longboards are practical for transportation.
“They are faster than a bike; we have recorded speeds of up to 100 kilometres.”
His advice to anyone considering becoming an entrepreneur: “Find an outstanding mentor. Raise 30 per cent more capital than you think you will need before you start.” And, he says emphatically, “Start now!”
Learn more about Graham Buklsaphp at