Rookie Reveal Week is in full swing as we introduce the newest members of the SI Swimsuit family. Voting for Rookie of the Year begins on Friday Feb. 3 and we like the chances of today's newcomer Vita Sidorkina.
You might recognize her from rocking the runway in the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show or steaming up the pages of magazines in ads for Lilly Pulitzer, BCBG and Rebecca Minkoff, but there is more to Vita than meets the eye. The blue-eyed beauty grew up in Khabarovsk, a small town in Russia that's just two hours from China by boat. She hasn't been home in nearly five years, due partly to the frigid climate — the temperatures there can sink to nearly -30 degrees Fahrenheit! Not ideal weather for a Swimsuit model.
Want to see Vita off Insta and IRL? Meet her at the VIBES by Sports Illustrated Swimsuit festival in Houston! The two-day event at Post HTX kicks off on Feb. 17 with a food festival featuring favorites from top national and regional chefs along with a performance by R&B sensation Miguel. The fun continues on Saturday with a lineup of local Houston musicians and a headlining performance by Grammy Award-winning producer and DJ Diplo. BUY YOUR TICKETS NOW!
In the meantime, read five things you might not know about our Russian rookie.
1. Her full name is Vitalina, but her shortened name is meaningful to her because “vita” means “life” in Italian. She is currently studying Italian—learning 10 new words every day—because her fiancé (who recently proposed!) is from Italy.
2. She got her first job at age 12 working at her friend's father's bakery, folding cake boxes and filling pastries with cream and chocolate. Her baking career didn't last long, though, as she started modeling when she was 13.
3. She used to eat buttered bread with caviar before school every morning. “It might sound fancy,” Vita told SI, “but…it's something I'm used to, something that reminds me of my childhood.”
4. Before she became a model, Vita wanted to be a stewardess because she loves to travel and always dreamt of seeing the world outside her little hometown.
5. Vita is a self-proclaimed running addict, but loves all sports, especially paddleboarding!