Canandaigua, N.Y. - The U.S. Freestyle Ski Team has named Pittsford native, Jonathon Lillis, to its 2011 team roster. At 16 years old, Lillis is the youngest member of the team. An avid snow sports enthusiast, Lillis, began skiing at Bristol Mountain when he was eight years old. He progressed through the various junior development programs, that Bristol Mountain had to offer, focusing on the Freestyle Aerial program, which suited his passion for aerial maneuvers. The fact that Lillis earned a spot in the U.S. Freestyle Ski Team was no surprise to his Bristol Mountain Freestyle Coach, John Kroetz. "Jonathon is a dedicated athlete when it comes to training and competitions," said Kroetz. Nick Preston, a United States Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) Level 4 Coach, who coached Hannah Kearney to Olympic Gold in the Women's Freestyle Mogul competition in Vancover, has also worked with Lillis over the past several years and has seen him progress. "Based on Jon's passion and work ethic he could very well be competing in the 2014 Winter Olympic Games," Preston explained. Dedication, determination and a supportive family are key factors in Lillis getting to this place in his skiing career. A student at Pittsford-Mendon High School, Lillis completed the last two years of his course work on-line to accommodate his demanding Lake Placid-based training, as well as his travel and competition schedule. "I couldn't have been this successful without the support of my family, my school, local community sponsors and especially my coach, Johnny Kroetz," explained Lillis. "I was fortunate to have had access to such a fantastic Freestyle program right here in the area." Lillis will leave soon for the USSA Training Center in Salt Lake City, Utah. Upcoming major events for him include the World Cup series of events including one in Lake Placid on January 22nd. Asked if he has the 2014 XXII Winter Games on his radar, Lillis commented, "My primary focus is the upcoming season. If I do well, then participating in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, is a real possibility." Freestyle aerials were added to the Winter Olympic Games as an official medal event. Currently the Men's U.S. Freestyle team is ranked number one, with 14 total medals in Freestyle skiing (five gold, five silver and four bronze).
###PLEASE NOTE: For photos and background info go to: http://www.clarkcsm.com/split/bristol.html Contact: Drew Broderick Bristol Mountain Winter Resort Phone: 585-374-1125 firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.bristolmountain.com/