A LONG way from home, two talented teenage schoolkids have flown the flag for Renfrewshire on the international stage. 

Lara Cabrera-Myram, from Houston, and Leon Drynan, from Lochwinnoch, took to the slopes in Sarajevo as they represented Team GB in the 2019 European Youth Olympic Winter Festival Youth Games (EYOF) last week. 

The duo were two of 911 athletes competing in Bosnia and Herzegovina in one of the Europe's biggest bi-annual sporting events. 

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Preparations for the Opening Ceremony ✨ Pripreme za Ceremoniju otvaranja✨ #eyof2019

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And while neither returned with a medal for their efforts, both headed back to normality with an experience worth more than any prize. 

For Johnstone High School pupil Leon, 15, the trip was worth the sacrifices it took to get there.

The snowboarder told The Gazette: "It was a really good experience, especially meeting other athletes from other countries.

"The main thing I sacrifice for my snowboarding is not being able to see my friends all the time. 

"It’s hard to balance school and snowboarding, like in March I go to Switzerland for a few weeks for the Brits, but I’m still unsure whether I’m going to go this year because of exams. 

"It’s getting harder because my exams are getting harder so we’ll have to see – a lot more work needs to be put in."

Leon, who competed in both the big air and men's slopestyle events, first picked a board when he was just seven and hasn't looked back since.

He added: "During the winter me and my dad would go snowboarding, because we weren’t able to ride dirt bikes at this point. 

"I saw him doing it and thought that it looked good fun, so I ended up booking lessons."

Meanwhile, Lara, who tested herself against the continent's best in the women's snowboarding slopestyle and big air, was competing for the first time in 2019 and already can't wait to take to the slopes again. 

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A wonderful video from yesterday's snowboard competition! 🏂 #eyof2019 #groodvy #twocitiesonedream #togetherwecreatethefuture

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The 15-year-old said: "It’s really cool to meet other athletes that might have done better or worse and see their runs so you know how to improve and know what to do next time.

"I’ve been away with some of my teammates before but, this has been a good way not only for us to bond but everyone else too.

"My school are quite good when it comes to my training, they let me do whatever, but I feel like I could be better at doing both at the same time."