words Lacey Menkin photos Craig Kelesky
Watching Nick Davies’ final run at the 2009 Wake Park World Championships in March, Dean Smith summed up the 19-year-old English rider perfectly when he said, “The Mario Brothers’ theme song should be playing while Nick rides.” Davies’ riding style is similar to his lifestyle: energetic, bouncy, loud and playful. Yet, despite his habit of making wake parks look like his playthings, there’s plenty of evidence Davies takes his riding seriously. Hyperlite just gave him his own pro model board and made him the marquee rider on its new cable team. He’s landed several 1080s off kickers, and he left the CamSur Watersports Complex as the 2009 Wake Park World Champion.
Growing up in England, how were you exposed to wakeboarding? When I first started riding, I must’ve been about 13 or 14, no one had any idea what wakeboarding was. I only got into it at school, as one of my mates did it, and he took me along one day. But I’ve never stopped since then.
Where are you living these days? I’m back and forth. I’ve been in Orlando for a couple months for the winter and I’ll be there for the summer, but I still officially live in England.
Has living in Orlando given you a chance to ride more behind the boat, or is your focus still on cable? It has, but I’m still mainly on the cable.
But you still did very well in the boat competition at the Wake Park Worlds. Yeah, it was a surprise! I haven’t really ridden behind a boat in awhile. I was sort of shocked. I saw my name on the finals sheet and thought, “Oh, now that’s all right!”
Do you enjoy cable and boat riding equally? Well, I have always ridden the cable since I first started, so I feel more at home on it. I do still love the boat. I just don’t ride it as much as I would like to. So if I had to choose, I’d choose the cable, but boat is right up there with it.
What’s your take on the future of cable riding? Do you think the future of the sport lies in that direction? At the moment, boat is massive. I mean it is the wakeboard industry, but cables have popped up everywhere over the last couple years. In England, we’ve got like nine now.
Who do you look to for inspiration? Mariah Carey