Breaking onto the competition scene in a big way in 2009, Elias Ambuhl has accomplished more before the age of 18 than a lot of people will in their whole lifetime. But don’t get too down on yourself – it tends to happen when you’re a wunderkind in the freeskiing world.
Following in his brother’s footsteps, Ambuhl – born in the heart of the alpine skiing world of Switzerland – made the jump to the less-recognized freeskiing scene at a young age. Despite a lack of recognition in his home country, Ambuhl has been making headlines around the world with his talent.
Climbing through the open qualifiers at the first stop of the 2009-10 Winter Dew Tour, Ambuhl used the momentum from his second-place showing at Freestyle.CH to blaze through Dew Tour prelims before he finished fifth in the final.
A progressive jumper from a big Swiss family – including three brothers and one sister – Ambuhl was the youngest skier at his first Winter X Games competition in 2010. The only European in the Big Air final, Ambuhl held his own landing double cork 1440 for the first time in his life at the last run of the competition and walked away with the bronze medal.
His impressive performances throughout the year and on the Winter Dew Tour, including a spot in the finals at Snowbasin, earned him top-10 overall and as a result his peers voted him Breakthrough Athlete of the Year.
See what we mean about wunderkind?