Italo Ferreira grew up in a small fishing village called Baía Formosa in Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil, where he often borrowed surf boards from his cousins and taught himself how to ride the waves. It was his modest upbringing that led to his signature style of aerial jumps and impressive rail game. One of the most explosive surfers in the world, Ferreira has already qualified to represent Brazil when the sport makes its much-anticipated Olympic Games debut in Tokyo. The high-flying athlete became the 2019 World Surf League (WSL) champion after winning three events and notching four other top-five finishes – including the Billabong Pipe Masters where he clinched the world title. Ferreira has competed in the WSL since 2015 and took home the Rookie of the Year Award in his first season. After disappointing seasons in 2016 and 2017, he bounced back in 2018 to finish in the top five with three event wins. His vivacious personality, passion for the sport, and his natural showmanship have made him a fan favorite and one of the most popular World Champions in WSL history as he looks to medal in his first Olympic Games appearance in 2021.