After taking the under-21 Super G title home from the 2015 English Alpine Championships, Stockton skier Ollie Eaton insists he is after more of the same from this year’s edition.
Around 350 of the best English alpine skiers will descend on Bormio, Italy, on February 13 for the week-long 20th English Alpine Championships, organised by national governing body Snowsport England.
And when the Super G event rolls around on Friday 19 all eyes will be on reigning champion Eaton.
But while the 19-year-old admits he would like nothing more than to once again head home with a gold medal around his neck, he knows that is easier said than done.
“I think for most people the English Alpine Championships are their favourite event and I am no different,” said Eaton, a member of the English Alpine under-21 squad and the British Ski and Snowboard Development Group.
“It’s because there are lots of people there and it is good to see all your competitors in one place and see where you are and compare against the rest.
“I am returning to Bormio definitely looking to defend my title. There will be some older guys looking to beat me and I will be the one to beat but that is part of it when you are defending champion.”
Preparations for the defence of his title could have gone better for Eaton who had to contend with a lack of snow at the back end of 2015.
But now that Mother Nature has been kinder the teenager cannot wait to be back at the championships.
“He added: “It has been much better of late and I have managed to go to a few training camps out in Norway.
“Since January it has been a lot better and I am hopefully building up some momentum now ahead of Bormio.”
n Follow the English Alpine Championships, organised by Snowsport England, via www.englishalpinechamps.org.uk or @SnowsportEng on Twitter.