Not even Shaquille O’Neal, if he knew the slightest thing about skateboarding, could handle the world’s largest skateboard by himself.
The over-sized but otherwise realistic contraption is 36 feet 7 inches long, nearly nine feet wide and weighs 3,800 pounds.
It requires a group of people to successfully ride and even then it’s usually a short and precarious journey that results in a highly comical wipeout.
So it was predictable that when California Skateparks owner and board co-designer Joe Ciaglia recently tried to give the WLS a solo-whirl down a grassy knoll, he was forced to bail from and nearly trampled by an out-of-control unit that flipped in a wild crash farther down the hill.
What might also have been predictable was that the madcap episode would end up on YouTube and be witnessed by more than a million people.
It’s titled “Joe Ciaglia vs. the World’s Largest Skateboard” and it was posted July 1. On Monday its viewership surpassed 1 million, a testament either to the popularity of skateboarding or to the the fact that people simply love a good laugh at other people’s expense — or both.
“Obviously with me falling it got a lot more attention that it would have had I not fallen,” Ciaglia said. “If you look closely my foot hit the tire and my shoe got knocked off.”
It also helped, from a popularity standpoint, that the original WLS was unveiled during a 2009 episode of MTV’s “Rob Dyrdek’s Fantasy Factory,” and that the celebrity/skater designed the board with the help of Ciaglia.
That board is in Dyrdek’s warehouse. The latest model, owned by Ciaglia and referred to simply as “the big skateboard,” is an exact replica and was recently displayed at New York’s Times Square. It has been featured on commercials and will be used as a prop when Dyrdek’s new%