A TEENAGE skiing hopeful from Solihull is hoping she can transfer her talent from plastic to snow after winning the GBR Under 14s National Series.
Ella Giles has been skiing since the age of four after taking inspiration from various family holidays to the Alps before she even started school.
The 13-year-old, who didn’t start ski slope racing until she was in year five, now trains with the Midland Ski Club at Ackers in Birmingham.
With the plastic season now at an end, Ella has flown out to the Kitzsteinhorn Glacier in Austria with her mum to further enhance her experience on snow – something which the Solihull School pupil described as a strange transformation.
She said: “Moving from snow to plastic was a bit strange but I loved racing around gates.
“I train on plastic twice a week with the club and also go to holiday camps while competing for a ski racing team named Ambition.
“Training on snow is a bit harder but for the past two years I’ve started to train in the Alps during school holiday time.
“If you can perfect your skills on plastic it really helps when you start training on snow – the courses are longer and conditions vary a lot which takes some getting used to.”
After tasting success in this year’s GBR National Series, Ella has discovered a new motive for her efforts in training and admits her ultimate aim is to represent Team GB at the Winter Olympics.
Talking about her success on the slopes this season, the Olympic hopeful said: “The plastic season starts in April and runs through the summer months.
“I was hopeful of picking up some podium finishes in the Under 14s category this year – however I ended up winning the GBR National Series.
“The series winner is determined on the outcome of the Welsh Open Championship, the All England Championship and the British Championship.
“It was a very special win for me, especially as the former winners of this trophy include British female olympians Chemmy Alcott and Emma Carrick-Anderson.”
Based in Dickens Heath, Ella is now training hard on the snow surface to enhance her chances of competing at the Games in the coming years.
With the support of her mum, and help from younger sister Lottie – who also takes to the slopes – Ella is hopeful she can make a smooth transition.
She added: “This year I really want to turn the success I’ve had on the plastic ski slopes into success on the snow.
“My school has been really supportive and agreed to let me take a term out from Christmas to Easter.
“I’m travelling with my mum and Lottie to Flaine in the French Alps where we will be living and training every day.
“My ultimate goal would be to represent my country in the Winter Olympics.
“There is a lot more training for me to do before I can start even dreaming of this, but fortunately I enjoy training – it’s great fun.”
To follow Ella’s progress, visit her blog www.skigirls.me or if you would like to sponsor the teenager in her quest to reach the Winter Olympics, email email@example.com.