One of the best downhill longboarders in the Philippines, John Rex “ Double D” Tongco has been a phenomenal longboarder over the past few years in the Philippines. Dandoy, (his popular nick name) started as a freestyle longboarder. He is the only one who can execute every trick and invent new trick adding up in his list using a Loaded Bhangra or cross stepping fluidly in his favorite “Tabla” Dancer by Driftwood. From creating new freestyle moves such as the “Siquijor Trick” to surfing a stoked set down south. He’s even skated in front of the President, to inaugurate the tallest bridge in the Philippines. Dandoy’s talent is a stand out; he’s the ultimate boardsports guy. Dandoy can ride a longboard and reach up to 80 km/hr, he can rip some big waves in his surfboard and he can catch waves in a beach break with a skimboard.
Dandoy and Patrick Switzer in Dumanjug, Cebu
Dandoy gained international recognition together with his longboard band of brothers, Grupo Nopo in their downhill videos featured in mylifeonboard.net. Grupo Nopo (Opon spelled backwards), is a group of longboarders from the small town of Opon, in Mactan island, Cebu. Grupo Nopo shares a common local pride, at the same time, spreading a principle of Free Energy. With origins of skimboarding and eventually skating, which they started in 2003, Grupo Nopo has also become a steady source of raw talent. Joseph Falcone, Arjun Jimenez, Pedro Escarda, Rico and Ering Ricablanca with Dandoy Tongco, are just some who have carried the Grupo Nopo banner participating in longboarding events all around the country.
Dandoy Tongco was only 14 when he competed in his first freestyle longboarding event. Even then, he was the young gun to watch out for, started out as a radical skimboarder from Opon who eventually became a superstar in longboarding, this guy keeps his feet on the groud. He honed a lot of skills over the years. On a longboard, he manipulates and balances, the fact that the board is taller than him back then. His tricks have given him much respect, much more when you consider his age and size.
Now, Dandoy has dominated Philippine Longboarding scene and the Asian longboarding competitions in Singapore and Malaysia. He’s a constant podium placer, making him a downhill longboarding icon at the age of 18. He’s riding for Driftwood Local Ent., Loaded, Orangatang Wheels and DC Shoes Philippines.
Still Dandoy is down to earth, a humble guy that knows to look back and give respect to its roots. He is an inspiration to the young generation of longboarders in the Philippines.
Excerpt from our article on Heelside Magazine Issue no. 7