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Tearing down an ice track at high speed might not be everyone's idea of fun but it is something Ella Molteno loves.
The 14-year-old Logan Park High School pupil has emerged as one of the country's more promising lugers.
She claimed two firsts and a fourth to win the senior women's section of the Naseby Cup earlier this year, with a total of 260 points, 50 more than her nearest competitor.
While two of those races were against depleted fields - the July storm prevented many competitors travelling for them - she also finished fourth at the national championships.
In those championships she competed against older competitors, some of whom had been overseas to train.
It was an impressive return to the sport for the year 10 pupil, making a comeback after not competing since she was 10.
She had remembered how much fun it was and decided to go to both luge and ice camp in Naseby.
Having learnt to luge as a child, it was easy picking it up again, and she compared it with riding a bike.
Her time of 30.74sec was faster than any woman's on the track for ''a few years'' and she reached speeds of up to 40kmh.
That speed could be variable in the sport, with top competitors reaching 160kmh and beginners able to use slower ''tourist'' sleds.
However, it was that speed she enjoyed about the sport and embraced it, rather than finding it intimidating.
''I don't find it scary, but I can see how people would,'' she said.
''I don't have a problem with speed, I love speed; it's kind of my weakness.
''Also [luge is] something that you need to put all your mind into, all your body.
''It's kind of like a focus and I like that, I like having to focus on one thing.''
Living in the southern hemisphere had its limitations for the luge, although it could be worse as far as Molteno is concerned.
The Naseby luge track is the only one south of the equator, meaning she has relatively easy access to her sport.
However, it was a natural track, rather than the artificially built-up ones used in the Winter Olympics. It was also far shorter than the 1km-long ones overseas and the 1.5km ones in the Olympics.
However, she hoped to go overseas to train on different tracks, providing more variety and more regularity.
That could mean going to Europe, or to university in the United States upon completing school, if she could.
She said the International Luge Federation looked after New Zealand competitors, often funding trips to train overseas.
The national body was also fundraising to build a tin summer track, which would enable year-round training.