Charger Spotlight: Vinny Leonelli
By Emi Parker | Staff Writer
October 22, 2012
For the majority of high school, students’ homework and school are their first priorities, but for Vinny Leonelli, co-captain of the DP surf team, surfing is all that is on his mind.
Leonelli started surfing six years ago with the help of his dad. Dedicated and persistent, Leonelli practices everyday no matter the weather or swell.
While he keeps his favorite surf spot a secret, he admits that El Captain and Haskell’s are two of his top spots to surf.
“They’re my favorite spots because there are no crowds and I feel free from the world.”
Vinny is currently ranked number one in the Volcom series as well as ranked number one in the WSA (Western Surfing Association).
He recently competed in the Volcom surf contest in Morro Bay and two weekends ago he surfed in the WSA surf contest in Pismo Beach, winning both. In the last month, out of four big contests, Leonelli incredibly won three of them.
His winning record and aspiration to be the best has done nothing but help him reach his goal of one day becoming a professional surfer. He is currently sponsored by Esteem, Body Glove, OAM (on a mission), glass clothing, UnXposed hanging towels, Oakley, and Haskells design.
These are only some of the many sponsors he has picked up over the years.
In addition to his desire to compete in surf contests, Leonelli sees surfing as not just a way to pass the time, but also as a way to let loose and clear his mind.
“Surfing is my getaway from the real world,” says Leonelli. “Surfing inspires me to be a better person and to do better in life. It takes the stress off of things.”
Although being ranked in the top 20 in the United States is something to brag about, Vinny still maintains his humble side and continues to practice and work hard every single day.
“I just keep cool and keep surfing,” say Leonelli. “I’m one of those guys that doesn’t brag about anything.”