Meet professional surfer & model Victoria Vergara. She has climbed as high as #2 in rankings on the European Championship, and has surfed on the World Longboard Tour. In addition, her modeling career has appeared on major publications including Vogue and Elle magazines.
Sam: I appreciate you taking this interview. Could you please share with our audience a little about your life and growing up?
Victoria Vergara: So I actually grew up in New Caledonia and Reunion Island, two French islands, one in the Pacific Ocean near Australia and the other one in the Indian Ocean near Madagascar. My parents love to travel, so they have always brought my little sister and I with them to discover the world. I grew up with the ocean as my garden and the mountains as my neighbors, which I feel has made me really close and conscious about nature since day one. I also never had any TV growing up and was spending most of my time between school and the beach. Along with exploring the coral reef, surfing or even skating when there weren’t any waves.
Sam: Since you started surfing at a young age, what led you to compete with longboards, particularly?
Victoria Vergara: I started surfing at age four on my dad’s bodyboard. Both of my parents are surfers, so they taught me pretty much how to swim before I could even walk. From as far as I remember, I’ve always loved the ocean and that feeling of catching waves. When I was a teenager my goal was to become a pro surfer and I was very lucky that my parents helped me and supported me to get where I am today, in exchange of being a good student at school and get my degree.
When I turned 15, I participated in my first longboard contest and won. It was the first time that I was actually surfing on a longboard, and it was still my dad’s board, but I loved it right away. The feeling of walking on the water was a perfect mix of dancing and surfing to me and the adrenaline that contest was giving, had been something I wanted to do more. So, at the same age I started training really hard, in and out of the water, started to have sponsors and won more and more contests.
Sam: Why did you then decide to pursue a career modeling along with surfing?
Victoria Vergara: I’ve always been passionate with fashion and I started doing photoshoots when I was fifteen, so it kind of came naturally. I was approached by agencies and started to love more and more that side of my life. It’s a good combination, and I feel like a double agent, since those two sides of my career are very different. I love doing a variety of things, so to switch from my bikini to high heels is a perfect change of pace for me.
Sam: That is exciting, how do you maintain balance between your exciting careers and life?
Victoria Vergara: I’m fortunate enough to call the people I work with my family. Working with amazing people, and most of them who have become more than friends is really important to me.
I also give all my family an idea of what my schedule is like during the year and we all try to plan some time together. They try to travel with me to contests and I try to go back home all the time in between jobs (even for a night) to see them just to share one dinner. It makes me a bit more tired and requires more travel, but it helps me and makes me feel like I’m not missing out so much.
Sam: Finally, what do you have coming up & where can people follow your journey? I also know you have some major sponsors that are important to you and have helped you along your way. Please feel free to speak to them as well.
Victoria Vergara: People can follow me on my Instagram @victoriavergara, where I’m the most active and share all my trips, workout, recipes, thoughts, work.. I’m currently working on a Vlog Project, couple surfing movies, and still training to win some contest and walk in bigger fashion shows.
I would love to thank my sponsors, O’neill, for being the best family and support through my journey. O’neill is also a brand that creating clothes and bikinis from recycled plastic and are very conscious about the environment. They support women and push us to be bold and not be afraid of who we are. Reef, for their support and love since many years now. They have been doing so much for our planet. Using vegan leather in their products, organizing humanity actions all over the world. GoPro, for making my job easier and always pushing my limit. They always create the sickest trip and treat me like a princess. I would love to shed a light on Eden from DeadKooks, for having my back since a very longtime and helping me to improve my surfing. Eden is also really involved in donations to association with the board he is selling.
So, I feel super grateful to work with brands and people who share my values, because it is something so important to me!
Disclaimer: All photos provided courtesy of Victoria Vergara.
NEXT: If you enjoyed this article, please read our interview with Olympic Speed Skater Saskia Alusalu