Vanessa-Mae on Coronet Peak last week. Photo supplied.
She will soon fly to a glacier in Europe to resume ski
training ahead of her Winter Olympics bid, but popular
violinist and skier Vanessa-Mae had her first competitive ski
race at Coronet Peak.
The internationally recognised violinist flew to New Zealand
for two races last week.
Vanessa-Mae (34) competed in the giant slalom in the FIS New
Zealand Championships - for Thailand, as she holds a Thai
passport, even though she is based in the United Kingdom -
but the second race at Treble Cone was cancelled.
She said she was looking forward to being reunited with her
violin and flying to Hong Kong soon for her next show, before
ski training in Europe.
She had been to New Zealand before, but it was her first time
to visit Queenstown and her first competitive ski race, which
came with ''the usual rookie mistakes'', she said.
''I had no idea that it was a rolling start and I was
expecting a cue by way of an announcement of my name or
number - so when I suddenly heard a beep and saw no other
skiers in the vicinity, I rushed to the start gate, made it
just in time and was still talking to the referee as I pushed
''I learnt a few valuable lessons that day, including there
are no short cuts to gaining experience.
''I was also relieved that I was not nervous before my first
race and I thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience, even if
there were a few entertaining moments.''
She began skiing around the same time as she started playing
the violin, aged 4, but skied much less and missed out on
skiing from age 10-14 ''as I was busy recording my first
three classical albums''.
''To start ski training with only six months to go before the
next Winter Olympics in Sochi is a big challenge.''