Ellie Soutter, one of Britain’s most talented young snowboarders, died on her 18th birthday on Wednesday.
Soutter began snowboarding at the age of ten. Her coach was French Olympian Deborah Anthonioz.In addition to her snowboarding career, mountain biking and hiking were among her other hobbies.
During the 2017/18 season, Soutter competed as part of the Freeride Junior Tour and had been selected as a member of the British team for the Junior World Championships in New Zealand. In 2018, Soutter was part of the inaugural British Europa Cup snowboard cross program. Soutter boarded in the disciplines of boardercross, freeride and half pipe. In June 2017, Soutter was featured by the Daily Telegraph as one of the “Future Stars of British Snow Sports.”
After winning her bronze medal at the European Youth Olympic Festival, Soutter told her hometown newspaper in the UK, The B romley Times, “I don’t think it’s quite sunk in yet, I’m a little bit emotional. I cried as I crossed the line – I was just so emotional as it hasn’t been the best season for me and it’s finally on the way up. I even asked my coach to put snow down my back when I was in the start gate. It helps wake me up so I don’t feel all floppy like a jellyfish.” In April 2016, Soutter won silver at the British Snowboard Cross tournament after opting to not compete at her age.
No further details have been released about her death.
“Ellie was an incredibly popular and well liked member of the team,” British Olympic Association chair Hugh Robertson and BOA Athlete Commission chair Ben Hawes said in a joint statement.“Our thoughts are with her family and friends at this sad time.”
British Ski and Snowboard meanwhile said in a statement: “Ellie was one of the country’s best up-and-coming snowboarders, competing in both snowboard cross and freeride”.The statement added that Soutter had been due to return to competition next month.
Her father, Tony Soutter, said he was “so proud of the beautiful young woman she had turned into”.This cruel world took my soulmate and “Bessie” from me yesterday on her 18th birthday,” he posted on Facebook.