Ex-Bega snowboarding young gun Mia Chawner is making waves in the US.
Youngest grand daughter of Stan and Judy Shipton, Mia, 13, has just competed in the USASA national snowboarding championships.
Mia, a Year 8 student at Snowy Mountains Grammar School in Jindabyne competed in three events, snowboard Slalom, Grand Slalom and Snowboard Cross.
The nationals were held at Copper Mountain in Colorado and Mia says she had a blast.
“I had such a great time USASA Nationals competing as a member of Team Squaw,” Mia says, adding that she hit the goal of finishing top 10 across her events.
Her results included two seventh-place finishes and ninth in the grand slalom against the best the US has to offer.
She had qualified as the third fastest racer in the snowboard cross, a tremendous result, but the field lifted in the finals to relegate her down the leaderboard.
This was the second time Mia has competed in the US national championships, racing against the top ranked American girls in her age group and a handful of internationals.
Much like Cooper Topalovic-Woods of Pambula Beach, Mia travels to spend as much time as possible in the snow.
This means switching between the home fields of Perisher and America as part of the Squaw Valley SBX (snowboard cross) team.
Mia said it was great to take on these events as part of a team and commended her team-mates on their efforts.
“Congrats to my team mates and friends who competed in both skiing and snowboarding,” she said.
“But also a big thank you to my coaches, family and sponsors for all your support.
Mia said the nationals event was a cut above other competitions she had faced and said she loved the experience.
“Nationals is an amazing event, everyone is so supportive of each other. I had a great time racing with an amazing group of girls,” she said.
“I had a great US season and can't wait to do it all again.”
Mia will now return to Australia and prepare for the local winter with her training to resume in earnest.
Family members said she was one of few people who races in hard-boots for slalom and giant slalom events with X-Snow Aus posting on Facebook the 13-year-old was proving “it was still a thing”.
Mia thanked her Cooma-based sponsors who helped make travelling to compete possible.
To follow Mia’s snowboarding adventure, you can like her page Mia Chawner on Facebook for regular updates.