From Issue 1 – you can buy it here!
Interview by OLLIE J
Photos taken by WOLCOTT/LIQUID EYE
Ryland Blakeney deserves his nick name of ‘Cracker’ for a good reason… When you see him destroy a lip and see how much man spray his power snaps generate you will understand… The guy goes big, lots of flare and has charged some mega slabs. Recently back from Mauritius with the Ozone tour I had a chance to skype him and chatted about sunken drones, big meany Mauritian locals and heavy heavy wipe outs…
What’s crackin’ Cracker?
How was the tour?
It was pretty sick; we had wind every day. We were only there for 8 days but scored it. The last day was the best – 5-6ft, no one out, had it to ourselves for a good 2 hours. We got the drone out but it went in the soup!
Oh shite what happened there?
Coming back in 25knots, it was 600 metres out and yeah, well it just didn’t make it. Had plenty of battery but we had to watch it just slowly drop and drop it ‘till she disappeared.
Yikes, there you go kids – don’t take your drones out in 25 knots! Did you get the footage back?
Yeah we had a little free-diving session and found it OK. Was still spinning underwater with all the lights flashing! Had to dry the memory card out but it was all good.
Cool but bummer about the drone. I know Stu Gibson has lost a few of those things too. His tip is to only fly them for half battery life and have a few spare batteries per session. Seems to work for him so far for this latest one!
How’s the Reo kite going?
Good mate, sweet as. Quality of them is wicked; the material they use is top notch. For a wave kite you need something tough and they are built to last. And of course they perform nice too – lots of drift and all that. Parks really well.
What are your thoughts on Firewire boards?
Yeah, they’re sick. Super fast, I love them.
What’s Mauritius like for kiting?
Well the water is insane. Like Fiji; super clear, super windy and lots of waves. We only stayed in the one spot but it’s good there. Just kite straight out from the beach lagoon to the reef.
Do they have rescue boats?
Yeah they do but they’re expensive! Like $60US. And that’s for a mellow rescue. If it’s a big day and you go down, expect to pay a couple of hundred bucks!
Is food and accommodation cheap?
Yeah, it’s pretty cheap in that way. You can get super cheap accommodation or pay $1000 a night – lots of options.
What about surf when there’s no wind?
The surf is good but the locals are heavy! Probably the most localised place I’ve ever surfed. It’s like nothing you’ve ever experienced before; even if you’re the only one out and one of them paddles out, they tell you to get out (or just smack you). All good when you’re on a kite though as they can’t catch you! It’s not the Mauritians though, they’re sweet, it’s the neighbours.
Hectic! Well you got some sweet pic’s so it looks like the trip went well. And how was your Indo trip with our all-star photographer Woody?
Yeah that was good, as usual. Couple of heavy wipeouts going down; snapped boards, all part of the fun in Indo, you know.