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Britain's snow queen patched up for last shot

Chemmy Alcott, the English skier, trains so hard that she can barely crawl out of the gym.

Chemmy Alcott is Britain's most successful skier with five top-10 World Cup finishes

It is a sacrifice the 31-year-old is prepared to make as she faces a race to be fit in time for the Sochi Olympics after re-breaking her right leg in August.

Now with what she describes as a "nail through the bone marrow from the ankle to the knee" inserted in her battle-scarred limb, Alcott says she is winning her battle to be at the start gate in Russia.

It has not been an easy ride since the Vancouver Olympics where she competed in all five Alpine disciplines and finished 11th in the super-combined, matching her result in Turin four years earlier in the downhill. In late 2010, she was left with bone sticking out of her skin after a high-speed crash at Lake Louise, Canada and needed so much ketamine that she cannot remember anything about the career-threatening accident. Days later she found out that UK Sport was ending funding of Alpine skiing, leaving a £60,000-sized hole in her pocket.

So despite having broken the leg again earlier this year, London-born Alcott treats adversity with a shrug of her shoulders. "I have niggles in my knee where the metalwork goes up to but I've been able to control that with kinesio tape," said Britain's most successful Alpine skier with five top 10 finishes in the World Cup, from her St Moritz training base.

"I love pain, I love going to the gym and not being able to walk out, crawling out, that's my personality. I always do things to extreme. I'm the perfect re-habber really. I'm actually trying to rein myself back because I get over-excited and it's hard for me to take baby steps because I always want to push the limit."

Alcott says Sochi, her fourth Olympics, will be her last and, she believes her recent experiences - including a stint on Dancing on Ice - have given her plenty of options for life after skiing. "I've learned so much about the business world, branding myself and marketing myself, approaching sponsors with self belief," she said.

For now, though, it's all about getting up to speed so that when she arrives in Sochi she can be competitive. "If I didn't think I was fast I wouldn't be putting all this effort into getting back," she said.

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