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Surfersvillage Interview: Leonardo Fioravanti is a gladiator

Leonardo Fioraventi © Surfersvillage

 

 

 

Interviews

The Surfersvillage Interview drops in with the man who could be the first Italian on tour

Surfersvillage Global Surf News, 30 October, 2016 - Two years ago he was the freakish Euro grom from, of all places, Italy. This year he’s the high-ranked-QS-surfer poised to jump on board the CT train. At his sponsor’s event, the Quiksilver Pro France last week he took out Kelly Slater and only narrowly lost later on to Gabriel Medina.

At the event Leo was all interviews and running commentary, bouncing between the competitors’ area and the media tent. He’s talkative, animated, confident, speaks more languages than you and will quite possibly be the next big thing on tour. Leonardo was able to join us for the Surfersvillage Interview.

 


Leo's quiver © Quiksilver
 

How would you describe what you do for work to a small, inattentive child?

What I do for a living is pretty much the best thing in the world. It’s something I’ve always dreamed of. When I was a kid I would watch Kelly and the best surfers travel the world to compete. And it was a dream and now it’s becoming a reality. And, yeah, I miss my family when I’m travelling, but the dream is becoming real. I love this life and I wouldn’t change it for anything else.

 


Leonardo Fioraventi © Quiksilver
 

Share with us something most people don’t know about the “Life” of a competing surfer travelling the world. People look at you and say “Wow. I want that life.” What’s something they don’t see?

I wouldn’t say there’s anything bad about this. You gotta work hard to achieve what you want. But there are times where, say, you’re filming for a video part and trying a certain air. And you try ten times and never nail it. And you surf the whole day without getting the clip. Then there’s the QS tour which they call the QS Grind. It’s often small and windy and to get to the Dream Tour you have to go through the QS. But you gotta get through it and know how to surf any conditions from small surf to 10-foot Te’ahupoo.

 


Leonardo Fioraventi © Quiksilver

 

Share with our audience one moment when you thought you were going to die.

I never thought I was going to die. But I guess last year at Pipe I went over a wave and hit the reef and I heard a “crack” and felt the gnarliest pain go from my toes to my neck and it went black. But then luckily the jet-ski came and saved me and they took me to the beach and then to the hospital. I didn’t think I was going to die but it was definitely scary. And I didn’t know what happened. (We know what happened: Leo broke his back and came within millimetres of being paralysed).


Leonardo Fioraventi © Quiksilver

 

What’s your biggest Rocky Balboa moment, you know, punching meat and running up the stairs of the Capitol to your own theme song.

I was training last year after my back injury and was swimming and made an instagram clip with that theme music.”Dah dah daaaah..” That song just pumps you up and gives you strength. I love the Rocky Movies.


Leonardo Fioraventi © Quiksilver
 

 

Three moments in history you’d like to be a part of:

When Kelly and Andy were battling for the world title. I would love to be surfing competing during those times.

Another surf moment would’ve been when Te’ahupoo was huge a few years ago during the contest. The Code Red swell.

I would’ve loved to be alive when the Roman Empire was conquering the world.

 

 

Author: 
Bryan Dickerson
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