Well, it’s that time of year when the search to find Miss Universe Australia is well underway with state finals kicking off across the country.
Starting off our home state interviews is La’Ace de Vries one of the contestants who will be competing for a place in the national final held later this year in Melbourne at Sofitel Melbourne on Collins, Wednesday, August 31st, 2016 where the nations finalists will be competing for the title of Miss Universe Australia 2016.
Congratulations on making it so far in the coveted Miss Universe Australia competition tell us a little about yourself..? Hi, thank you! My name is La’Ace, I am 23 and I am from Clayfield in Brisbane. I am passionate about animals and consider myself an outdoorsy sort of person. Growing up on 15 acres, I have always had nature in my heart. I previously studied Veterinary Sciences and am a qualified owner, trainer, driver for Queensland Harness Racing. My spare time was spent with my horses as well as being a wildlife carer. It was rewarding to nurture sick animals back to health. Nowadays, I focus mostly on my horses. I love Camp Drafting and Sporting Days.
Who or what inspired you to get involved in the Miss Universe Australia pageant? I grew up watching the Miss Universe Pageant and found the women so inspiring. I like the idea of being able to stand up and give women a voice.
It’s important for women to show that they have more to offer than a pretty face. It was nerve wracking taking the plunge to do Miss Universe, but the confidence it gives me is amazing.
Speaking of inspiration what inspires you most? The person that inspires me most would have to be Miranda Kerr. Ever since I started modelling, I found her values, her kindness and her determination a real inspiration to be the best I could be. I have also had the pleasure to meet her and her family, and they are every bit as genuine as I hoped.
What is something that you hope to bring out of the Miss Universe Australia pageant? Miss Universe provides such a great platform to get a taste of media. You learn how to represent yourself and give what matters to you a voice. I would like to help charity organisations that support animal welfare. I am hoping to bring out of Miss Universe more clarity in who I want to be and more confidence to pursue my dreams.
The Miss Universe Pageant has a long history of associating with charity are there any social causes that are particularly close to your heart that you would like to use the platform of Miss Universe to advance? I am so happy that Miss Universe Australia has teamed up with Toybox to raise money for Ronald McDonald House and Starlight Express. They help families of sick and disadvantaged children have a life that is as normal as possible.
Late last year, my niece was born with some complications. Everything seemed fine, but the doctors soon noticed she had an oesophagal atresia with a tracheoesophageal fistula. Simply put, her oesophagus wasn’t connected properly, and her stomach was filling with air meaning she couldn’t eat properly. This further leads to finding another complication with her heart which meant her body struggled to get oxygenated blood throughout her body.
They live in Sydney, away from family which made their situation difficult. I know that they benefited spectacularly from charities that helped young children. To be a part of Toybox means a lot to me. I hope we can raise money to positively change the lives of your parents in similar situations.
The rivalry between states is sure to be heightened this year, why do you think Queensland is the best state to take out Miss Universe Australia Queensland is the Sunshine state and the girls here radiate with confidence, intelligence and poise. While I believe all contestants have a fighting chance, I think that Queensland girls have a bit more of that welcoming and likeable personality that is needed in the Miss Universe Pageant. We are so lucky that we will be getting mentored by one of Miss Universe Australia’s greats, Jesinta Campbell.
GETTING TO KNOW YOU
What is something you find yourself always saying …?
Horses are like shoes; you need one in every colour.
How would your closest friend describe you?
Motivated, confident and driven, but also down to earth and fun.
What are your top three values that you live by?
The family is everything.
Treat people and animals with respect.
Good health is key to a long happy life
Something that makes you stand out from other contestants?
From representing Australia in Miss Tourism to rounding up cattle camp draughting, I work hard at everything I do to achieve the best possible outcome. I can quickly go from getting muddy with the horses to being glammed up for pageants. I think that this versatility is important and helps me stand out while staying grounded.
What does your current fitness regime look like in the lead up to the state finals ..? It’s pretty intense; I go to Think 24hr Fitness in Newstead 3 times a week for personal training. Every other day I am horse riding.
Name five things you can’t live without?
What song would you say is your personal anthem or theme song and why…?
I’m Just a Girl – No Doubt
I grew up with this song blaring on my stereo. When I was younger, I just loved the catchy tune. I love Gwen Stefani and how she went from sleeping in cars to stardom through her hard work and determination. I think this song is so fitting when it comes to gender equality, a pressing issue lately. This is also fitting for beauty pageants. Beauty pageants are more than how beautiful women look. It is about showing that these beautiful women are strong, courageous and have just as much to offer to this world as men.