This goofy footer grom has a smile that will light up a room and a fearlessness unmatched by many people, young and old. Willow has grown up on the West Coast of Australia in the midst of Margaret River legends, many of whom are Hardys! Now, she is adding her name to that list and writing it in bold. She recently made her WSL CT debut in the Margaret River Pro after earning the wildcard spot by winning the Drug Aware Margaret River Pro Trials, became one of the youngest surfers to compete in a CT event, and ranked 22nd on the Women's CT with the conclusion of the comp.
That is quite the resume for a 14-year-old! To add on, this surfer girl is the current Western Australian Under 18 State Champion and the Ripcurl Grom Search 14 and Under National Champion. Willow is truly a dynamic and powerful surfer that will make a big impression on the competitive stage in years to come. To learn more about Willow, read our interview with her below!
When did you start surfing?
"I started surfing when I was 6."
Willow's first wave ever!! ^
What is your favorite thing about surfing and/or competing?
"My favourite thing about surfing is how happy it makes you feel even if the conditions are bad. I love competing because it drives me and keeps me motivated, I think a balance between competing and fun surfing in important though."
Are there many female surfers at your local break?
"There are definitely loads of girls who surf in Margaret River but because there so so many breaks I’m often the only girl out if it’s more of an unknown break unless I’m surfing with my sister. 🥰"
What is the best advice you have gotten from another female surfer?
"I think it was from Stephanie Gilmore after our heat together at the Margaret River Pro. She was saying how to just concentrate on your own journey and not get dragged down by comparing your self to other people."
Do you have a favorite move- turn, barrel, or air?
"I thinks getting barreled is my favourite part of surfing or hitting a first section perfectly which sets the wave up."
What is the most exciting moment you have had in your surfing career so far?
"I think winning the trials to qualify for the WSL Margaret River event at the end of April was super exciting especially as I didn’t have many expectations going into it. Then of course competing in the actual event was crazy."
What challenges do you face as a young female surfer?
"I think the main challenge is social life as there is so much you have to sacrifice but it is all worth it and you just have to find the balance."
What are some goals you wish to accomplish in the future?
"I think traveling and competing in the qualifying series and hopefully qualifying for the tour is definitely a dream."
Willow with Gabriel Medina and Amuro Tsuzuki^
More content of Willow below! Catch up with Willow on Instagram (willow.hardy) to see more.