8-year-old Rydge Vail may have only started wrestling as a way to fight back against his big brother, but over the last three years he has achieved much more than that. Getting into the sport when he was just 5 years old, Rydge has excelled beyond expectations and shows no signs of slowing down.
Rydge currently trains with the Sons of Thunder in Idaho, working hard to achieve his goals for the upcoming wrestling season. At the SOT Academy, Rydge looks up to his teammate Destin Summers as a role model. Destin is 16 years old and another hard-working athlete who helps to keep Rydge motivated towards improving. Rydge also considers his dad to be a hero of his.
Even after just three years of wrestling, Rydge’s accomplishments in the sport are adding up fast. In the last year, he placed in the top three at every RMN event in which he competed, and had no points scored on him all year. He is also the two-time defending Idaho State Champion, as well as winner of last year’s Triple Crown, the All American Wrestling Cup, and Western Regionals. Rydge also placed second at the USA Greco Nationals. This year, Rydge hopes to defend his title and win the Triple Crown again. As a longer-term goal, he would like to win the state competition all four years of his high school career.
For now, though, Rydge is happy just competing and winning as much as he can. When asked what he likes best about competing in RMN events, Rydge replied that his favorite thing is winning, and his second favorite thing is getting trophies. If his past record is any indication, he will no doubt be adding to his collection this season.