Name: Dylan Graves
Weight: 80 lbs.
Hometown: Isabella, Puerto Rico
Sponsors: Quiksilver, Channel Islands, X-Trak, Oakley, Ocean and Earth
Some kids have all the luck. Take Dylan Graves, for instance. He gets to live in tropical, beautiful Puerto Rico, has insane sponsors, and was recently brought out to Southern California where a couple brand-new Channel Islands were waiting for him so he could compete on the same team as Kelly Slater and Ben Bourgeois in the Op T3 Challenge. He also held up his end of the bargain by surfing flawlessly and helping Quiksilver finish in second place. If everything falls into place, look for Dylan to make a mark in our sport’s future.[IMAGE 1]-A.C.We recently caught up with Dylan at this year’s ASR show in Long Beach, California, and here’s what went down:
Do you like living in Puerto Rico?
I love it ’cause of the warm water and you never have to wear a wetsuit. It’s sunny and warm. You don’t have to worry about being cold, and there’re awesome waves.
Is this your first trip to Southern California?
No, it’s my third trip. I’ve been coming out for the NSSA Nationals for the past two years, but this is the first time I’ve been out here in the winter-I always come out in the summer. So I’m pretty excited. I did good in the last contest, so I’m even more excited and stoked.
How was it surfing with Kelly Slater and being on the same team?
It was an honor to see him surf and be on the same team as him. It was amazing to see how he does combos on his waves, how he connects everything-it’s crazy.
Do you think you’ll get a chance to surf with your idol again?
Hopefully, I’ll get another chance. It was a learning experience watching him. It made me think how much of a different level he’s on than everyone else.
You just got some new boards from Al Merrick and Channel Islands. Did Kelly give you any tips on dimensions or anything like that?
He didn’t really talk to me about boards, but I talked with Al and he shaped me two new ones. They’re like the best boards I’ve ever gotten. I got my Merricks the first day I got here, and it was like I could do anything-I was flying down the line.