Vanessa-Mae swaps violin for skis at Sochi Olympics
Violinist Vanessa-Mae has qualified for the Olympics in Alpine skiing.
“It would appear that she’s done it,” manager Giles Holland told the BBC. “She’s done it by a whisker, but she’s done it.”
Vanessa-Mae, whose full name is Vanessa-Mae Vanakorn Nicholson, was born in Singapore to a Chinese mother and Thai father, raised in Great Britain and is a British citizen with a Thai passport.
“I am British, but realistically there is no way I could represent my own country,” she told the Telegraph in 2010, when she began her Olympic quest. “Because my natural father is Thai, they have accepted me.”
The classical-pop violinist will ski for Thailand in Sochi. Thailand has won 24 Olympic medals -- all in Summer Olympics.
Thailand has sent one athlete to a Winter Olympics before -- cross-country skier Prawat Nagvajara, who placed 66th and 96th in two races he finished in 2002 and 2006. He was lapped in the third and disqualified.
Vanessa-Mae, 35, has sold in excess of 10 million albums since her 1995 debut, according to the Guardian. She began playing violin at age 5 and was a child prodigy, one year after she started skiing.