Corina GoGo Spreiter

In the 1970s and 80s, an awareness of women skateboarding both inside and outside of the U.S. was rarely acknowledged or tracked in mainstream skateboarding magazines, but Corina “GoGo” Spreiter of Switzerland was hard to miss!

In a report on the skate scene in Europe, a photo of Corina practising slalom in Lake Geneva appears in the November 1979 issue of Skateboarder, as Spreiter was part of the Swiss Landsurfer’s Club.

Her love of freestyle skateboarding is where Corina soon began to dominate, and she often competed against the guys performing super technical tricks like a Godzilla flip and various ollie grabs and spins.

In Münster, Germany at the 1986 Freestyle Masters, Corina placed 9th out of 25 guys in the Pro category. In a report in the January 1987 Thrasher on the September 1986 European Championships in Warrington, England, the article noted that “Gogo Spreiter (Swiss), undoubtedly the best female skater in the world, got 8th place. I think she deserved better.”

At age 23, Corina made her way to North America in 1986, where she competed at the Transworld Championships in Vancouver, BC at Expo ’86. She won the women’s amateur Freestyle contest ahead of Sue Hazel, April Hoffman, Sophie Bourgeois, Michelle Sanderson and Stephanie Person. Footage of her performance is found here taken from the Transworld video called “Radical Moves” (1986, dir. Larry Dean). The awkward and toxic commentary by Kim Blackett, with degrading banter directed towards the female participants, was sadly a reflection of the times that persisted.

In response to Corina’s performance, Blackett stated, “In warm-ups, GoGo was wearing her old skate shirts that she cut up. They barely covered the essentials. She said she didn’t do it to be sexy, it was hot in her country, and it was the only way she could get a tan like that. They were pretty interesting – it made it even more fun to watch.” Blackett’s comments implied that female skaters were a sideshow for the benefit of a male-dominated audience alone, where their appearance was more important than their performance. Meanwhile, in the men’s competitions their outfits, including crotch-clutching short-shorts go unacknowledged.

Classic footage recorded by Chris Eggers of Corina at both Expo ’86 and the Münster Masters was uploaded here by Joachim Schulz:

A few years later, in Prague, Czech Republic, Corina placed 17th out of 30 guys in the 1988 Euroskate competition. When asked about her feelings as the only female to enter the contest, Corina replied, “I’ve just seen the points now and I’m wondering how they gave them. It’s really hard to tell. There are some people in front or behind who shouldn’t be there. It’s quite strange. Still, it was a fun contest. Everyone skated well. Personally, I skated well, so I’m happy.” Her response suggests that the judging was suspect at best.

Some rare footage of Corina was found from Skateboard World Cup in July 1988, in Munster, Germany competing in amateur freestyle along with the guys! The time clock says she was performing at 6AM in the morning! Ouch.

This performance, from the German TV Show “Geld oder Liebe” (Money or Love) in 1990 seems to be the last record of Corina skateboarding on record:

According to fellow Swiss skateboarder Ruedi Matter, he performed hundreds of skateboard demos with Corina back in the day. I would love to find an interview with Corina, perhaps in a European skateboard mag and to know more about how she began skating, if any companies sponsored her, etc.

Joachim YOYO Schulz replied to this inquiry sharing that Corina was sponsored by the same team as him, called Walker Skateboards in the 1980s. He also contributed these photos, which I am most grateful for! The content includes an ad for Walker, a drawing in 1986 by Jared Katz, an interview in Monster Mag, skate tricks from 1982-1986, and a great reunion photo of YOYO and GOGO in 2010!

Photos by: Martin Willners

Corina mentioned in “Radical Moves” that her passion was training horses, which was taking up more and more of her time, although it gave her free time to skate from April to September. Hopefully, she continued to balance her skateboarding and work, and that her home country managed to celebrate her accomplishments better than the skate industry at large.


Back to Top

Enjoyed the post? Check out these features: