TODAY

TODAY   |  September 20, 2013

NY teen making waves in surfing world

The state of New York is known for many things, but surfing is certainly not one of them. But 18-year old Quincy Davis is on the fast track to becoming one of the best surfers competing today. NBC’s Matt Lauer reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> new york is known for a lot of things but being the surf capital of the world , not one of them. and one may have new yorkers changing their tune from forget about it.

>> reporter: this surfer isn't your average california girl. that's because she is not from california. she isn't even from the northshore of hawaii. she is from the southshore of long island.

>> i'm christy davis, i'm 18 years old and from new york .

>> reporter: being from new york gets a lot of strange questions on the international surf circuit.

>> they usually ask if there's an ocean there.

>> reporter: she's not just a good surfer for a new yorker . she is on the fast track to become one of the best. currently ranked third in the world at the junior's level she is poised to break into surfing's elite world championship tour and quincy wouldn't just be the only new yorker on the tour, she would be the first.

>> so what's a nice girl from two hours from new york city doing as one of the top young surfers in the world? when did you first start surfing?

>> when i was about seven years old.

>> was it because everybody around you was surfing.

>> i said i wasn't going to surf. but i was just on the beach and i got bored.

>> reporter: and that boredom was replaced by something else. winning.

>> i started going with my friends out to local contests and i would come home with like these cool little trophies and i just kept going from there.

>> and she kept on going with her family's full support.

>> the story goes that there were times in school where the waves would be great and your folks would go in and basically tell the teachers to principal quincy is going to surf now because the waves are rolling in.

>> yeah, they're so supportive because they understand the love that i have for surfing because they surf as well. they did anything they could. help me with getting a tutor or traveling with me.

>> reporter: she graduated with her high school class this past june and went to prom and has a day job working at her family's restaurant. sounds like a typical teenager except this teen had an attitude problem. she needed to get one. to be a winner in this sport, siems waves have to be stolen.

>> do you think your reputation out there, do they expect you to be more aggressive?

>> yeah, most of the time. sometimes have to push myself to be more aggressive. my new york side does come out.

>> you're a new yorker that has to push herself to be aggressive?

>> yeah, sometimes.

>> reporter: but it's not just surfing that's gotten the attention of publications like the new york times which recently did a profile on quincy . it's also her all american good looks. quincy has done some modeling. but it's pretty clear she would rather be surfing. even if the water is already so cold that she needs to wear a full body wet suit and so do i.

>> i can't believe you convinced me to see how cold this water is.

>> are you ready for it.

>> reporter: turns out i wasn't ready for it. just trying to swim out was challenge enough. i gave it my best and my best was eventually a wreck.

>> she's 18.

>> reporter: i'm not cut out to be a surfer. she will surf in the fridged waters until november when she will head out to warmer climates but new york is where her heart is.

>> i wouldn't trade surfing somewhere else for like one of the best days at home.

>> reporter: and as the old new york saying goes, if you can make it there, you can make it anywhere.

>> wow and there's the coolest young lady in the world.

>> oh my goodness.

>> two hours from new york city . she says even when she tells people she's from new york they say is there even an ocean there.

>> do you think she is going to get endorsement deals? what a star.

>> way to take one for the team. you'll do the surfer-model story?

>> it was a friday afternoon.

>> then you had to get in the water.

>> water was cold.

>> yeah and deep too.

>> it's an old joke.

>> we were like what does that mean.

>> coming up at 8:42, what multitalented husband and wife pe