Checking in with Dean Smith
Dean Smith has been down under for the past several months working on a wicked new tan and reinventing his outlook on the sport.
Dean, why is Australia so hot right now?
Well, it has been literally hot all summer. We just went through the hottest January in Australian history. I was at Penrith Cable Park and the thermometer read 48 degrees celsius (you can work out the conversion). In heat like that, it feels like the road is melting. I’ll be coming over to Florida this year with a cracker of a tan! Boom!
We’ve had a massive crew head over to Australia this year like Raph, Oli, Bob, Daniel Grant, Andrew, Dowdy, Trevor, Murray and Shota. Maybe Australia and being Australian is the new black…
Who has landed more doubles, you or your girlfriend?
Ha! Happy to say I’m not in the same company as Steel and Phil as pro men who have done less doubles than a girl. Im pumped for Amber, at 30, she is still pushing women as hard as ever. First female to land a double, first to do a toe 7, first to do a heel 7, and first to do a 9. Pretty solid!
What’s up with Harley Clifford looking old all of the sudden?
Try how weird it is being at a bar in Australia, looking to your right and seeing Harley say (In your best Harley impression) “Deannnnooo”. I remember coaching him when he was 8 years old, now I’m having beers with him! Crazy how old that makes you feel! He also grew out of those little man boobs he had since he was 10, but I’m pretty sure he hasn’t started shaving. Fairly safe to say the Wakebrothers fan base are into the clean shaven look anyway, so I think that works for him.
Do you drive a “Ute” when you are in Australia? What’s so cool about them?
It’s short for “utility”. Utes are basically anything with a tray (truck bed), but are normally the same size as a normal car. I haven’t got a Ute in Oz, but I have a Silverado in the USA, so I guess I could still say I own one! All the tradies in Australia drive them because they can just throw their tools in the back, and still drives like a car. The new Holden Commodore R8 ute is badass!
Two part question: When are you coming back and what are your season plans? Are you going to ride any of the wake park stops this season?
I’ll be back at the end of this month. I had the longest break from wakeboarding that I’ve had in 10 years, so I’m looking forward to getting back refreshed. It’s funny how stale I feel after riding tour for the last 10 years, and feel the need to reinvent myself a bit. I don’t really want to reinvent my riding so much, but the way I go about being a “pro rider”. I want to focus on filming a lot more this year. At this stage I could be filming for 3 separate films over the next 18 months, so it will be difficult to juggle everything, but I’m looking forward to it. I still genuinely enjoy competing on the King of Wake series and will be still on tour. Some people don’t enjoy competing, but I’ve always enjoyed that aspect of wakeboarding. The only problem I’ve found is that I feel stale, like my riding stops progressing. I want this season to be a big one. And yes, that could certainly mean hitting up some wake park events this year… I’ve always enjoyed cable!
When you and Amber have trouble sleeping, do you ever just lay in bed and talk about wakeboarding tricks? I bet that could happen because I have nights where I cant sleep because I’m thinking about wakeboarding. So…?
For real?! No.
Dean Smith, high over the second wake with no plans of coming down…pic: Cortese
What’s your secret to landing comfortably off of kickers and when going big into the flats?
There’s no real “secret”. I guess the biggest tip would be to either go wake to wake, or as far into the flats as you can. The landings are always hardest when you land halfway between wake to wake and the flats. The further out you land, the easier the landings get. Once you start taking things into the flats, its simply a matter of sorting out the timing of the landings. Obviously handle control is a big part of this too. I’ve been impressed with Scott Stewart over the last few years. He has certainly figured out the handle control in the flats. Watch his mute 7, and you can see exactly how to do it! Rusty has been boosting in that last 18 months too. He is so fun to watch ride!
Rumor has it someone is going to do a triple flip this year. Do you think it’s possible, or is it all just hearsay?
Ask Dowdy? He’d be your man…
Is Ronix making everyone lose weight in their contacts this year? Danny and Parks look so skinny lately…
No. Adam was just appointed dietician though.
What’s your favorite throwback video of all time?
Probably Natural Born Thrillaz for Randall’s section alone. Still the best video section ever put together. Going to be a while before that will be topped! Switch 22 is pretty dope too. Steve Wahlman has one of the smallest, but best part in that.
Can I borrow your “ute” till you get back?
For the “push play generation” who don’t have time to read…enjoy Dean Smith in Action from Mexico.