Vans Kyle Pro 2
Joining liberal activist Justin Henry’s ethereal World Peace release and last month’s futuristic collaboration with Sci-Fi Fantasy’s Jerry Hsu, Oklahoma city's Kyle Walker returns to the Vans centre stage to deliver the second instalment of his signature pro model skate shoe. Celebrating his initial drop back in 2016 with the revolutionary Wafflecup lace-ups, this latest drop from the gritty-lined pro-skater welcomes a velcro-fastened profile into the mix, playfully re-writing the original blueprint in line with contemporary desire and a strive for superior boardfeel. Joined by two rose-adorned t-shirts and a laid-back hooded sweater, Kyle Walker and Vans’ latest release goes above and beyond when it comes to capturing all there is to admire about the skater’s ‘own the impossible’ ethos and Vans’ never-ending pursuit for purpose-driven pro profiles.
Having grown up skating the stretches of Oklahoma’s ‘Tornado Valley’ and its respective hot-spot locales, even-tempered Walker is no stranger to the game when it comes to overcoming limitations. Currently aged only 26 and adding Thrasher’s ‘Skater of the Year’ accolade to his name in 2016, Walker has continued to commandeer and conquer the contemporary skate scene with his undeniable passion for life and his quick-fire footing. Inspired by his own desire to challenge perception with what’s ultimately conceivable, Walker is never one to back away from something all-together energizing, whilst his highly unpredictable skate style is something that’s kept him on the tips of tongues for the past decade.
Since joining Vans’ ranks in 2013, alongside fellow creatives such as Gilbert Crockett, Lizzie Armanto and Geoff Rowley, Walker has continued to land leading parts across a number of creative collaborations, including the Pro Classics Pack from 2014, featuring both a self-titled burgundy-hued Old Skool silhouette and a classic white Slip-On, as well as hosting a spot on the more recent Vans x Spitfire capsule drop from 2018 with a sky-blue re-invention of his classic ‘16 self-titled pro model. Frequently spotted in enduring edits and fast-paced footage, including clips such as Vans’ ‘Propeller’, ‘No Other Way’ and ‘Spinning Away’ films, as well as Real Skateboards’ ‘Be Free’ stint from 2020 beside his good friend and fellow SOTY awardee Ishod Wair, Walker continues to prove his worth, illustrating that anything’s possible if you just set yourself up to ‘seek and destroy’.
With a more contemporary vibe and appeal, the Vans Kyle Pro 2 arrives after a four-year hiatus to deliver undeniable comfort and a more streamlined, skate-friendly aesthetic. The most notable changes include the switching out of the classic 6-eyelet lacing system for a more convenient velcro-fastened closure, whilst the design’s now slip-on profile is designed with well-cushioned support and all-round structure at the forefront of its creative vision. Boasting similar vibes to the classic Slip-On EXP Pro shoes, as well as previously released pro models from both AVE and Elijah Berle, these monochrome suede and textile skate shoes are fitted with a removable moulded PopCush footbed and are constructed utilising original Wafflecup methods for added stability and comfort. A higher foxing-tape than its pre-existing design helps boost its reinforced structure, whilst the chunkier lug-style tread pattern actively spills over across the heels and arching midfoot for a more fortified fitting. Padded cushioning is maintained around the ankle, with the classic contrast-stitching, block-tone side stripes and the colour-fused toe bumper all merging together seamlessly to honour a more modernized revival. Keeping with tradition and in line with its rose-adorned collection counterparts, a custom-embroidered ‘Vans x Kyle Walker’ diamond-style patch is woven across the lip of the flat tongue with a single-rose at its centre, whilst the ‘Kyle Walker’ printed ankle pulls above the embossed ‘Off The Wall’ heel branding help sign these shoes off with a more lighthearted and simplified undertone that sticks hard and fast to the Oklahoman skater’s down-to-earth roots.
The Vans Kyle Pro 2 will be available at Flatspot on Thursday July 30th.
Shop all Vans at Flatspot.