May 16, 2008
Wesly Matweyew is one of the west coasts top riders both on and off the water. SBC Kiteboard askes Wesly about his gear choices for the west coast and advice for first time riders.
What do you look for in a board where you ride?
I like boards that are durable with a lively feel. All my boards are completely stock with the exception of my custom surfboards. I don’t need to tweak anything on my setups beyond the stock options. My stuff holds up so I can develop a relationship with the board, allowing me to concentrate on what I’m doing and not adjusting it or repairing it.
What do you look for in a kite?
Well-rounded kites with easy-to-use safeties that maintain the highest level of performance. I want to switch from my surfboard to my twin-tip and then, as the tide drops, switch over to my mountain board all on the same kite. Fast turning with low but direct bar pressure, which requires less energy from me, resulting in a increased performance level over a longer session. They must be super stable in variable wind and have more than average wind range. I love my Cabrinha bar setups. They are simple, clean, and the plastic centreline saves me a ton in replacements, tuning and worry about pushing one more session on a worn chicken loop.
What advice do you have for someone choosing his or her first setup?
Spend a good deal of time watching, meeting and asking questions of riders of all abilities who are kiting the area you plan on riding. Buy a kite from a reputable shop and take lessons. Spend more money on a better kite, and if you need to cut pennies, your best bet is the board. It won’t cost as much if you lose it or hate it, and it isn’t so much of a safety concern. Learn to body-drag upwind, and don’t use a leash.
Do you see any common gear mistakes where you live?
Buying old C kites. The new kites will allow you to learn safer, quicker and much easier, saving you a ton of aggravation.
Weight: 165 lbs.
Hometown: Ventura, California
Boards: 6’1” and 6’4” custom JHR X-Factor epoxy thruster squash tails, Cabrinha Custom 133, MBS Pro 6, Steepwater Steep 158
Bindings: Cabrinha Wide Body, MBS F-3, Cabrinha Effect
Kites: Cabrinha Omega 5/7/9/12
Harness: Cabrinha waist and Dakine Nitrous
Check out this slideshow of Wes in action.