Not everyone has as cool—or as prophetic—a sports origin story as Lakey, and fewer still have followed through with the perseverance necessary to take such a beginning and write chapter after chapter of success and achievement at the highest levels. But that’s Lakey for you. And even before she was winning World Surfing League (WSL) event titles, she was reshaping expectations of what it meant to be a woman in sport.
"It’s not that the boys are slow, I’m just fast."
It’s fair to assume Lakey’s rise in the surf began immediately following those summer days in Manly Beach, but that’s not how it played out. At all. While most aspiring pros begin their time in the waves as early as four, Lakey unsurprisingly blazed her own path, as she so often does. A classic case of “late specialization,” when the Peterson clan returned to California following their world adventure, Lakey didn’t take up surfing… but she did take up just about everything else. The youngster was a multi-sport junkie, whether baseball, basketball, tennis, flag football—you name it, and Lakey found her way to it. She loved playing on mixed teams, too, breaking down gender barriers when most kids were still picking their noses. Needless to say, she kept a full schedule. All the same, surfing, it seemed, was inevitable. The girl dubbed “Legend”—and the one born to a former record-breaking All-American swimmer mother—was made for the waves, and she’d eventually find her stoke at the age of 11 when she took to surfing again, this time for good. And her ascent? Damn, was it quick. In 2009, she won the National Scholastic Surfing Association (NSSA) Women’s 18 and Under Open National Title by achieving the first-ever aerial maneuver in a women’s surfing competition. She followed in 2011 (age 16) with a perfect run for the USA Surf Team that culminated in a massive inverted front-side air reverse—an absolute touchpoint in the women’s sport. At the 2011 U.S. Open Of Surfing, she placed runner-up as a wild card entry, and would go on to win every event that season in the North American Junior Pro series, earning her official place on the WSL Women's Championship Tour. And demonstrating she was not just a junior sensation, she stepped right into the pro tour and was crowned winner of the 2012 U.S. Open of Surfing in her rookie year. Needless to say, Lakey’s barreled onto the professional scene with a fast-flowing ferocity rarely seen in sports—and the now 5x World Surfing League event title winner continues to rise to the occasion.
Ranked as high as #1 by the WSL and #6 on the ASP Women's World Ranking, Lakey has celebrated a career-best year-end finish of #2 (runner-up) on the WSL’s Jeep Leaderboard in 2018. The 5x WSL event winner owns a plethora of other career accomplishments to date, including:
NSSA OPEN WOMEN’S NATIONAL TITLE • 2009
Lakey’s almost as perfect a fit for Blenders as she is for the water. Even before she was boarding, she was on board with making the most of life’s moments, big and small. Yet, she understands being your best isn’t always about being the best, and that’s okay. Because your best is always enough—and that’s something Blendz has always celebrated. Lakey’s all about making waves outside of the water, too. She’s a staunch advocate for those in need, working with Southern California hospitals to stem the tide of childhood cancer. Her charitable endeavors extend to H4O (Hands4Others), where she encourages the implementation of clean water systems in third-world countries, and to the Student Conservation Association and the Advisory Board for Ocean Lovers Collective, where she champions environmental guardianship. Lakey’s a role model for young women—and men!—everywhere, and we couldn’t be happier to be associated with this breakout athlete.