A LONG way from home, a talented schoolboy has flown the flag for East Renfrewshire on the international stage. 

Owen Vinter, 17, was part of a contingent of talented teenagers to represent Team GB at the 2019 European Youth Olympic Winter Festival Youth Games (EYOF) in Sarajevo last week. 

The Newton Mearns youngster was one of 911 athletes competing in Bosnia and Herzegovina in one of the Europe's biggest bi-annual sporting events. 

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Snowboard Big Air - Boys at Bjelašnica this morning! #eyof2019 #twocitiesonedream #sarajevo #eastsarajevo #groodvy

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While he may have missed out on a podium spot, Owen did himself proud by claiming the team's best result in the alpine skiing event; a 20th place finish in the giant slalom.

The skier hopes to make it to a World Cup one day, but was delighted to get the chance to rub shoulders with some of the best in the continent at his age group. 

The Mearns Castle High pupil told the Barrhead News: "It was a once in lifetime experience and pretty cool. 

"I’ve never really ever had anything like that where I haven’t had to concentrate on anything else but skiing.

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EYOF2019 Opening Ceremony #eyof2019 #groodvy #sarajevo #eastsarajevo

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"My mum and dad are both ski instructors – my dad coached me up until I was 16. My brother also races, and he actually came to the European Youth Olympic Festival four years ago. He told me to just try and beat his result! 

"It’s was good to get a real clear understanding of where I am at compared to these guys."