To me, Kyle Wells is like a mini-version of Mike Weddington. He’s super nice, really mischievous, lives in the South and makes really hard moves look like a walk in the park. He’s only 17, but he’s already made a little bit of noise on the pro tour with both his explosive riding and Weddington-style finesse. While spending a few days with him at his adopted home lake – Georgia’s Lake Lanier – I learned something else cool about Kyle, too. He takes a joke really well, likes to dish a few out, and doesn’t mind all the “grom teasing” that he has to endure in order to hang out and do what he loves best – wakeboard.
You’re not originally from Atlanta, right?
No. Boise, Idaho. But I’ve lived in Atlanta most of my life.
What’s Idaho like? I’ve never been.
We’ve got a cabin in the Teton Mountains that we go to every year. It’s really peaceful up there. You should come sometime.
Oh yeah, I see a story idea brewing. What are you plans for competing this year?
I’m going to hit every tour stop and Nationals and World’s this year. I’m going full out.
That’s ambitious. Do you expect to do well?
Yeah, I should do okay. I want to finish in the top 25. I finished in the 30’s or something in the Triple Crown, but you’ve got to set some high expectations for yourself.
What moves are going to put you there?
I’ve been learning some new moves lately: Hasselhoff, indy tantrum to blind, roll to blind and switch big worm.
Not many people do that one!
Yeah, it hurts when you don’t make it.
But I’m about 70 percent with it now.
Tell the readers about Lanier.
It’s really cool. I ride with guys like Clay Rogers, Ty Austin and Thomas Klack. Thomas is a little pissed at me though because I hot wired his boat while he was gone and didn’t put it back the right way.
He’s going to give you some abuse for that one, huh?
Not really, he’s cool. I guess they respect me a little bit for my riding, so I get away with stuff.
How about Weddington?
Mike’s a great guy. He needs to stay in North Carolina, though. It’s nice up there and he doesn’t need to be in Florida all the time.
You’ve got a lot of stickers on your board, give me the rundown.
Fulltilt, Neilpryde, SMP, Airtime, Hardline, Rainbow, Ambush and Big Dog Sports.
Anything you want to add?
Thanks to every one who’s helped me out, especially Matt Long and his wife.