Amalia (Billy) Pelchat has been busy in PEI with her speed and tricks on the slopes and winning three medals in snowboarding – gold in her main discipline of slopestyle, gold in big air and bronze in snowboard cross.
“It was an amazing feeling,” she says of her medal success at the Canada Winter Games.
In addition to winning medals and excelling in her sport, the 15-year-old athlete from Whistler is also on a mission to promote sport participation for girls.
Pelchat and her sister Juliette, who won a snowboard slopestyle silver medal at the Red Deer 2019 Winter Games, have started a program called Real Wild Kittens. Known as RWK, her program hosts summer skateboard camps in Whistler.
“We are teaching girls how to skateboard and feel more confident in male-dominated sports,” she says. “When we started, there weren’t many girls in the sport. So, we thought this would help other girls into sports and get out of their comfort zone.”
Skateboarding is often the start for athletes who move onto competitive snowboarding.
The Pelchat sisters have lined up support for RWK from sponsors in the community, so the “Friday Ladies Skate” at the Whistler Skate Park on Fridays during the summer is free for all participants. “We want to make it accessible for everyone,” she says. The program is open to girls aged four and up. Skateboards, helmets and pads are all free for the participants.
Sporting bright pink gloves, designed by her sister, Pelchat says the gloves are another tool to draw attention to the program. Why pink? “Just to show femininity,” she describes. “Pink is not always girly, it’s powerful.”
With her three medals from the PEI Games, she intends to use them as source of inspiration for the girls at the Whistler camps. And Pelchat intends to continue in her sport and has dreams of competing at the Olympic Winter Games. “That’s the hope. I would really love to go to the Olympics.”
In the news: Who are the Real Wild Kittens? - Pique Newsmagazine
- Filed by Sam Corea (@sammy_sez), Team BC Communications Staff
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