Vans Site Hijack: Sancho
French big wave baron on his inspirations & influences
Sancho first made a name for himself in the early 2000's pulling into pits around Hossegor, and before long became the go-to guy for free surf magazine trips; Indo, Morocco, Tahiti, Canaries or anyone hollow, if it was barrelling, you could pretty much guarantee the guy nailing the wave of the trip - and the cover, would be him.
Spending the autumn season in SW France, basing himself out of The Canaries for the winter and with a trained eye on the swell charts globally at all times has been a formula that has allowed Sancho to be in the right place at the right time, and to ride some of the best swells in recent memory - spending a ridiculous amount of time in the tube in the process.
These days, as an integral part of the Billabong Adventure Division crew, Sancho has become known world wide for his big wave exploits, be they mind bending tubes in Mexico, giant, frigid Ireland, towing mammoth Nazaré or paddling epic Jaws.
We caught up with Sancho from his Fuerteventura base as part of this month's Vans Site Hijack to find out who and what have influenced his shred down the years.
What vids inspired the young an impressionable Sancho?
"All the old Billabong/Jack McCoy films from the days of VHS with occy, Margo and all the crew, like Sik Joy. Classic, timeless power surfing."
"Then of course Kelly Slater in Black & White, can't really get more game-changing than that..."
"Back from the MCD days, before all the World Titles, Raw Irons showcased just brutal, hardcore surfing."
What former/current Vans riders do you look up to?
Well, there are two standouts as pretty much the raddest guys out there/of all time aren't there? Dane & JJF dont really need any introduction..."
What are some of your favourite Vans shoes?
"I guess my tastes are pretty classic, pretty heritage. It's hard to look past the
Old Skool and Sk8 Hi."
If you took over the website and could interview influencers/icons/
anyone in surfing, who would that be...?
"Hawaiian power surfing/Backdoor legend Johnny Boy Gomes"
"Former pro turned master lensman Laurent Pujol."
"And then probably guys like Reunion Island air pioneer Francois Heer and French photog Bernard Testemale."