Team Nautique’s newest rider Mike Dowdy has everyone watching every move he makes, and for good reason. On top of being crowned this seasons Overton’s Jr. Pro Men series champion, he has landed tricks no one has ever done before, put out some insane videos this season, and continues to get picked up by the industries leading brands. Getting the opportunity to watch Mike Dowdy ride from the boat is like getting a glimpse into the future of our sport, and we’ll be the first to tell you… the future is BRIGHT!!
How did you get so good at wakeboarding?
There are a bunch of factors that played into it but coming up I would watch guys like Shaun Murray, Danny Harf, and Gerry Nunn ride, and just try to mimic what they were doing. The first time I went wakeboarding was during a clinic with Gerry Nunn when I was eight years old, and the second time was at a clinic with Shaun Murray where I landed my first wake jump, so those guys have always been really inspirational to me.
Coming off of your biggest season ever, what would you say was the turning point for you that made it all start clicking?
Training and focusing harder than I ever had before. I started to ride with Mike Ferraro and I think that was probably the major turning point in my riding. He helped me do what I always knew I could do. Training with him gave me the tools to put everything together and to be able to lay it all down in a contest setting as well as in practice.
You have landed some insane tricks this year. Some no one has ever seen before. How do you approach learning a new trick?
I just go for it. If you think about a trick for too long before trying it, it just gets in your head. You never know what’s going to happen until you try it and start the learning process, so I really just try not to think about it too much and charge it.
What would you say has been your biggest accomplishment of the year?
Winning the Overton’s Jr. Pro series title was huge for me. It was hard work all year long and it felt really good to see it all pay off and to win the overall title.
Are you working on any new tricks right now? What is your off season looking like?
Right now I’m letting my body rest, but I’m getting ready to come back to Florida and pick up my new boat so I’m looking forward to getting back into the swing of things. This winter I want to ride a good mixture of cable and boat to become the best all-around wakeboarder I can be. I’m going to keep working on new things and try to push the sport as much as I can.
How pumped are you to be getting a G23?
So pumped. That boat has already changed wakeboarding so much. It’s had KGB 720’s landed behind it, the first two wake-to-wake 1080’s in a contest, and has just taken riding to another level in the short time it’s been on the water. When I get mine, I’m really looking to push the sport as much as I can and learn everything I can behind it. Riding behind that boat has gotten everyone’s wheels turning, so it’s an exciting time for wakeboarding.
Being the new guy on Team Nautique, how does it feel to join the ranks among some of the most legendary riders of all time?
It’s unreal. To go from being a little kid watching videos of these guys ride and idolizing them, to having the opportunity to hang out together in the boat and ride is just insane. Now I’m riding with them and representing the same company, sitting at the same table signing autographs with them…it’s a dream come true.
Thanks to everyone who has supported me along the way, Nautique, CWB wakeboards, and my friends and family. Thanks to Nautique for giving me the opportunity to be a part of the leading boat company in the watersports industry. Words cannot show my gratitude for what being a part of this team means to me and what it has done for me as a rider.