While Summer is spreading slowly but surely and our first surf holiday of the year is coming up, we’ve caught up with World Junior Pro Alizé Arnaud from Capbreton, France to get pumped for the first waves
Interview by Jojo Cook, photos courtesy of O’Neill
How’s your season going so far?
I had a pretty good start to 2011 with winning the World Junior Title in January, but since then it hasn’t been what I expected, to be honest. I got 13th in the first WQS event and then I finished 19th in the next one, so I’m on place 17th on the WQS rating now which isn’t that good. Like every year I’m still a bit asleep in the beginning of the season but then I wake up in the middle and go for it, haha. That’s why I always get my best results at the end of the season…
Are you feeling extra pressure to perform now that you’re World Junior Champ?
No, not really because I don’t have to prove anything anymore. I made my dream come true by winning a World Title so now the other ones have to prove themselves rather than I. Maybe I will feel more pressure from the title in the next few years, but then I only really feel under pressure when I surf my home spots here in France because I ‘ve got the feeling that the locals are looking at me and judging me and I don’t want to disapoint them.
You already knew you wanted to be a pro surfer aged 5! How come?
Actually I wanted to be an athlete first, that was after watching the parade of the Olympic games in Sydney in 2000. Then when I surfed my first wave I fell in love with surfing so then pro surfer was my destiny …
What was the toughest obstacle you’ve faced along the way?
The death of my grandfather in 2006 was the worst moment of my life and really changed my vision on life. Two years later, in Summer 2008 I had a tough time with my sponsors and my family at the same time, which made the contests really hard for me, but I also won the European Junior Pro title, which is still one of my biggest wins.
How would you describe your surf style?
I don’t know! Hahaha.
What are your favourite and least favourite conditions?
My favourite conditions are 1.5 m high rights with barrels and some sections to do some manoeuvers with my friends just a few meters away from my home… And my least favourite are big lefts with lots of water moving and when you have to paddle a lot.
Who do you admire most in surfing right now and why?
I love Joel Parkinson because he’s such a smooth surfer! He’s doing crazy manoeuvers but he makes them look so easy, great style!!! And he’s one of the kindest surfer too!
Where is your favourite place to surf?
Home sweet home!! Haha. I love to be here because the waves are amazing and also because I can surf with my friends and my family.
And where do you most hope to surf one day?
In one of the Las Vegas’s swiming pools!!Haha, no I’m joking, I would love to surf Mexican waves because it’s look amazing!!
Are you surprised about how well Euro girls such as Pauline, Lee Ann and yourself are doing at the moment?
No because we have perfect waves here so it’s good to train and get better…
What do you most like doing when you’re not surfing?
Training a lot, hanging with my family and friends, study mythology, see new places like Miami or San Francisco, play tennis, watch TV…
Learn more about Alizé on oneill.com