18-years-old and already a veteran on the pro ski circuit, Sean Pettit’s idea of normal may seem a little skewed to the layman but he doesn’t let that slow him down. Born in Canada’s capital city, Ottawa, Ontario, Sean made the move to Whistler, B.C. with his family in 1999 and hasn’t looked back. Even though 2010 brought with it a solid part in MSP's film 'The Way I See It', a 2nd place finish in the Red Bull Line Catcher contest and also bragging rights as the Red Bull Cold Rush Champ, he doesn't plan on letting up and has even bigger plans for 2011.
What compels you to ski at the level you do?
S- What really gets me going is that I have the opportunity to go to all these amazing places and ski with people that I want to ski with, some of the best in the world, but I guess that’s what keeps me going, keeps me doing my thing (laughing).
What are some of the major hurdles you’ve encountered trying to maintain a ‘normal’ life?
S- My life compared to a normal 18 year old kid is pretty different. After grade 10 started doing my schoolwork on the road and I didn’t really go in to the school any more. I didn’t really get a chance to hang out with anyone at my school after that. It’s been a super good experience, even though I wasn’t in school I was learning so much on the road. I am learning about different cultures and countries and meeting tons of different people along the way. But yeah, some of the hurdles, man, I don’t know. I haven’t really had a chance to live a normal life. Since I was eleven I’ve been traveling around and as far as I know my life is normal. To me this is normal, traveling around to all these cool places skiing and filming 360 days out of the year.
Do you feel robbed of your childhood or are you pretty happy with how it’s all working out?
S- No man, I had a fantastic childhood. I got to hang out with a bunch of kids my age and did a lot of kid’s stuff when I was younger. I was just super lucky to get all these amazing opportunities around skiing while also living the normal life of a kid.
Where is your favorite place to get your skis under you?
S- I’ve travelled to a lot of places with skiing, but seriously, right where I live in Whistler and Pemberton is the best place to ski in the world and it’s right in my backyard.
Where is your favorite place to go and leave your skis at home?
S- To be honest, it doesn’t really happen (laughing). I’m going to Hawaii next week for my first tropical trip ever so I’ll let you know afterwards.
Where is your favorite place to go in terms of cuisine?
S- I love sushi….I’ve been lucky enough to go to Japan a few times to ski and the sushi is obviously some of the best in the world.
When people talk about Sean Pettit, your smooth strong style seems to come up a lot. What’s your take on your style and style in general?
S- Everyone’s got a different style. I watch a lot of skateboarding and a lot of snowboarding and I get influenced by a lot of different things in different sports and not just skiing. I try to mix it up a little. Man, I don’t know, it’s tough to describe your own style really, it’s judged by other people usually, but mine is definitely influenced by other sports. My definition of style is just how smooth or good someone can make a trick look. If they can make it look good then they’ve got good style.
Any big plans for the winter?
S- I’m looking to do tons of filming with Matchstick again this year and I’m also looking to take on a couple big projects in the backcountry with Red Bull that will involve lots of being in the air (laughing)…stay tuned!
Follow Sean and the rest of the Red Bull Canada Athletes on twitter:
Brandon Semenuk - @brandonsemenuk - Mountain Bike
Darren Berrecloth - @darenberrecloth - Mountain Bike
Drew Bezanson - @drewbezanson - BMX
Dusty Klatt - @dustyklatt - Moto-X
Kaya Turski - @kayaturski - Ski
Mark McMorris - @markmcmorris - Snowboard
Marie France Roy - @mariefranceroy - Snowboard
Mikey Rencz - @mikeyrencz - Snowboard
Ryan Decenzo - @decenzzzz - Skate
Sean Pettit - @seanpettit - Ski
Seb Toutant - @sebtoots - Snowboard
Stevie Smith - @steviesmith - DHMountain Bike
Will Gadd - @gilwad - Climber
Red Bull Canada - @redbullcanada