WAKESHOP.BE interview #7: Graeme Burress
Welcome to the WAKESHOP.BE interviews!
the WAKESHOP.BE interviews are here to get to know better your favourite riders. We have ask a few questions to some riders we like the most to share their insight with you!
There will regularly be new WAKESHOP.BE interviews posts like these with some of the biggest names on the scene so stay tuned!
Today we are meeting Graeme Burress !
Name: Graeme Burress
Nationality: USA - Cincinnati, Ohio
Date of Birth: december 25th
Sponsors: Hyperlite, Republic, Motorwinch
Quote: " It is often easier to ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission” - Grace Hopper
If you are a wakeboarder and don't know Graeme Burress yet, well it's about time! Rail rider of the year in 2014, Graeme is what we call a true freerider. Inspired by skateboarding and other board sport, he managed to find his own unique style and path. He probably today the biggest "sender" in the wakeboard scene! He loves to go huge and can be very technical at the same time. Riding winch and wakeparks like noone else, you should follow him because 90% of the time it is just Mind Blowing!
Instagram: Graeme Burress
Questions to Graeme:
1. Tell us about yourself in a few words.
My name is graeme, I like to wakeboard amongst other things. I’m originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, and live down in Austin, Texas currently
2. How and when did you start wakeboarding?
I went out with a friend and got up when i was around 10 or so? A week later my dad came home with 2 boards (Hyperlite coincidentally) and we got to learning together. My dad had a boat years back and had barefooted and slalom skied a bunch, so I already had spent a bunch of time on the water.
.3. What is your favourite wakeboard location and why?
Thats a tough one. I’ll pick two. Stateside, would be The Levee, a Private 2.0 here in texas and Internationally would be CWC in the Philippines.
4. You are one of the most impressive and creative rail rider in the world, What got you into rail riding so much, Where are your ideas coming from?
Thank you so much that means a lot. So back to when i started riding, it was strictly behind boat for 10 years or so, never went to cable or anything. At the same time I was skating and snowboarding nonstop, so when a cable park opened in Cincinnati in 2009 I had plenty of inspiration to pull from after years of that, along with the understanding of handle control and what not from being behind the boat and learning basics. From there, Cable was the perfect fit for me, it combined everything i loved into once place, with water to fall into instead of concrete or hard packed midwest snow
5. Around here, we often call you the Chris Joslin of wakeboarding because you seem to enjoy going fast and gapping over big things more than anyone else, would you agree with that surname?
I definitely like searching out the gaps and bigger stuff. Its just always been something that’s been easier for me than small tech hits.
6. We feel like you are enjoying more going big with simple steezy tricks than trying to be very technical, eventho we know you can be. Would you rather clearing a new spot/ gap with a mellow trick or learning a new technical trick at a wakepark?
Funny you say that because for my insight section last year i really tried to build a section that was just that. Simpler tricks done bigger. Its a fun approach, and I think it worked out well. but i enjoy both scenarios, if i’m feeling fresh and on point I’ll normally go out and try to find a new line or try a new trick.. but if i’m sore and its windy or cold or something, I’ll lap it up and work on something tech. just depends.
7. What is the scariest spot/ gap/ trick you’ve done?
Thats a hard one. “scariest” may be a trick from The Levee i just filmed last week. You’ll have to wait to hear about that one. but other than that, would be the concrete slide I hit in Argentina. had a lot of sketchy factors.
8. We know you are truly a freerider, do you have interest in being a competitor as well ?
I’ve enjoyed competing in the past, but was just disheartened to spend thousands to go to contest for it to come down to 60 seconds on the water to decide if the trip was worth it or not. I wasn’t the biggest fan of that pressure. I prefer to take the same budget and go somewhere to create content, because as long as I ride hard, It’ll be worth it.
9. One project, trip, session that is on top of your list, which one is it and can you tell us about it?
The first winch trip for my Insight section last year up in Cincinnati. Trever flew in for 7 days and things couldn’t have gone any smoother. Winching is normally quite a struggle even on a good day, but we powered through 2 spots a day for the week. Whether it was water levels, the lack of cops, or finding new spots last second, everything worked out better than planned. Being my hometown, there were so many spots I had been thinking about for years, but wasn’t sure if they would work. turns out they did, haha.
10. What are you the most excited about every season?
Its hard to define when my “season” starts and stops, as i pretty much ride all year. but in the late winter/spring, i always enjoy going through all my gear (boards, winch, cameras, kicker, van, camper, prius, etc..) and getting everything ready for the year. I like to be really organized and prepared, especially when it comes to winching. i definitely geek out a bit on having all my stuff dialed in and ready. its half the fun.
11. You skateboard quiet well! Does it help you with your wakeboarding or the wakeboarding helps you to skateboard better?
Thanks! they both help each other immensely. so much of it translates back and forth for me. for example wakeboarding has helped me become more comfortable skating faster, and skateboarding has helped me learn landing into a transition or bank smoothly on a wakeboard.
12. How is it to be part of the Hyperlite family ? You guys seem to have a lot of fun together!
Man honestly, i couldn’t be happier or feel more at home. having the whole “team” feel to me is pretty important, and we definitely have that at Hyperlite . The support they’ve shown over the years is unmatched, and I’m extremely thankful for the opportunities they’ve provided me.
13. You are the man behind the wishbone and we see it everywhere now! Can tell us about your Pro model and why is it such a success?…
It’s rad to hear you guys are seeing them a bunch over there! So yeah, I Designed the Wishbone with Aaron Stumph over at Hyperlite back in 2014, and we’ve been running the same shape ever since. When developing the board i knew i wanted something forgiving, with a lot of ollie power, and that would hold up to abuse. We ended up with a nice level around the rail to help prevent edge catches, we gave it an aggressive rocker for good pop off the water, all with a wood core. All combined, the board is great for beginners and pros alike. Not only that, but i’ve worked with Mystery Made on the graphic over the years, and its always turned out sick.
Hyperlite Wishbone
14. You are spending a lot of times in the Philippines, can you tell us why is it such a good location to wakeboard?
I first went over to the Philippines in 2013 with James Windsor for a quick trip, but quickly found out it was the place to be. It’s one of the best places to go if you want to hunker down and progress your wakeboarding. There’s both mellow and challenging features, which makes it perfect to learn something on the mellow boxes in the main cable, and have the ability to take it up to the plaza to a metal rail. not many places have that diversity. On top of that being able to sleep and eat on site is a game changer, and lets you really focus on riding
15. What/Who do you really dislike in the sport?
I honestly don’t have many if any complaints. I stay focused with a tight knit crew so don’t really have any issues. That’s the beauty of making videos. I’m not relying on a judge or someone elses riding to determine the worth of mine. I just do me.
16. How do you see wakeboarding in 5 years?
For one, there’s going to be so many kids ripping the cable (and boat too) that its going to be hard to keep up with everything. I believe wakepark setups with evolve immensely in 5 years as well, ushering in progression even more.
17. 3 riders that inspire you the most?
Thinking about it, I don’t think these three have changed since 2009 when i started riding cable: Felix Georgi, Dom Hernler, Raph Derome.
18. 3 personalities that inspire you the most?
Tricky one. First off, would say my Dad. Might be an obvious one, but he really showed me how to keep a level head through any situation. Another is Trever Maur. The way he carries himself as an athlete, friend, and husband is unmatched, and I really look up to the way he interacts and respects people. Last would be Anthony Ruch, the guy has taught me what it means to work hard, and to not make excuses. absolute legends.
19. Who will be the Wakepark rider of the year in 2020
20. We are pretty much currently living a world wide lock down, what is it like for you a day in those cover-19 restrictions?
I lucked out and was able to isolate with my roommate (Jb Oneill) up at the Levee, a private 2.0 park in texas. we got so much done while being stuck out there, can’t wait for everyone to see it.
Pick A, B or C
Wide stance/ Narrow Stance? just started riding a bit narrower. its fun.
Blonde or Brunette? dangerous question to answer.
Tea or Coffee? Coffee for life
Water or Whisky water
Bum or boobs? Both
Breakfast or Diner?? Breakfast for dinner
Day or night? Sunrise
Cable, winch or boat? Boat for chilling, winch for filming, cable for learning
Gin or Beer? Beer
Rap or rock ? Both
Meet or veggies ? Meat
Baseball or football ? i don’t like watching dudes play with balls so neither..
Rollerblade or Scooter ? scoot for sure
Tv or book ? documentary
USA or the Philippines? USA summer, philippine winter
Beer or Wine? Beer
Pizza or Burgers? Burger
Sand or Snow? Snow
Salt water or soft water? Soft
Thank you Graeme for your time! we can't wait to see what you are cooking for us!
Videos where you can find Graeme Burress:
insight - The Section Insight - The Past Insight - The Process
We hope you enjoy reading this and we are looking forward to share much more about the wakeboard world with you !
INTERVIEW #1: Victor Salmon INTERVIEW #2: Nico Leduc INTERVIEW #3: Massi Piffaretti INTERVIEW #4: Lisa Baloo INTERVIEW #5: Antoine Allaux INTERVIEW #6: Oli Derome
See you next wednesday for the next wakeshop.be Interview with: Graeme Burress
Credits Photo & Video: Hyperlite wakeboarding
- the WAKESHOP.BE team -

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