When you’re training ground is your backyard, a career as a professional skier doesn’t seem all that farfetched.
“I could just walk out the back door and jump on a ski run,” said Lewis Brunt.
Brunt, who started skiing at the age of three, is well on his way to becoming a professional freeskier – a feat he attributes largely to his upbringing at Big White Ski Resort and time at the Big White Community School.
“You knew everyone; everyone was your friend,” he said. “And it was that same group of friends you’d go out skiing with pretty much every day whether it was our home built park we made at school, or the three day weekends.”
Son of Jude Brunt, co-owner of Globe Cafe & Tapas Bar and The Blarney Stone Irish Tavern, the young skiing phenom initially competed in ski racing, but that all changed when an old coach introduced him to free ride.
“I was in love,” he said. “I knew this was where I was meant to be.”
The teen has already competed for Canada in the International Freeskiers and Snowboarders Association (IFSA) North American Championships three times, and recently took home gold at the second annual ”Freeski Biggie” competition at Big White.
Brunt said that he’s on track to qualify for the Freeride Junior World Championships in 2020.
Brunt trains with Red Academy at Red Mountain, and spends his winter season at school, or travelling to either Red Mountain or Big White to get his freeskiing in. And even after travelling all over North America for competitions, his favourite thing is still ripping The Cliff with his friends.
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Brunt attended the Big White School from Grades 3 to 9, and is now in his final year at Rutland Secondary School in Kelowna with aspirations to one day pursue a career in engineering – that is, if his pro freeskiing career doesn’t pan out.
In the meantime, he’s working on putting together a few short ski films, hopeful he can eventually break into that side of the industry. A few years ago, he participated in Big White’s film, “The Faces Behind the Lines.”
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