A skier from Notting Hill has made history by becoming the first Tongan to compete at the Alpine Skiing World Championships.
Kasete Skeen took part in the event in St Moritz, Switzerland, in February.
Unfortunately, the 34-year-old, who is hoping to become the first person to represent the South Pacific island at skiing in the Olympics , was unable to complete both runs in the Giant Slalom qualification race.
But he said he was happy with the progress he had made since quitting his regular job at Opera Holland Park to concentrate on making skiing history.
He said: “Competing here at the World Championships in St Moritz has been an amazing experience.
"Even though I made it to the finish line I was unhappy with how I skied in the first run.
"On the second run I therefore vowed to give it my all. If I had completed the course without trying to ski my best I would have felt defeated.
"We all fall down sometimes but knowing that I went down fighting makes it easier to stand up and try again.”
Speaking previously to getwestlondon from a training camp in the Alps on his Olympic ambition he said: “I’m not someone that’s been skiing all their life.
"I know I’ve got a mountain to climb, and I don’t just mean literally.”
He would not hit the slopes again until he would accompany his girlfriend and her family on their annual ski trips.
Over the years he improved but it was a chance comment to friends that set him on his Olympic dream.
He said: “As a joke I one day said I would ski for Tonga, and my friends thought I should do it but I brushed it aside.
“Then I went away on a ski trip and thought maybe this is something I could do.”
This happened a year ago. Since then, Kasete quit his job of nine years at Opera Holland Park and is now rarely home.
He said: “There are a lot of sacrifices to make. I’m away a lot."
Kasete, who went to school at Holland Park School, is eligible to represent the small island through his father, is aiming to qualify for the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea .
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