LUCA Carrick-Smith may only be twelve-years-old, but he is already set on becoming the world’s best alpine skier.

The son of four-time winter Olympian, Emma Carrick-Anderson, Luca started skiing at the age of two and will compete in the U14 age group at the English Alpine Championships, which start next Sunday.

His mother grew up in Dunblane, attending training camps in Austria, but Luca has spent his life in the French Alps.

He said: “I want to be the best in the world, like [Marcel] Hirscher. But I think I ski like Ted Ligety, because I often have my hip on the floor when I ski.”

The English Alpine Championships run from February 11-16 and are organised by Snowsport England, the national governing body for snow sport in England that is responsible for growing participation in snow sports through direct funding from Sport England.

They work closely with snow centres, artificial slopes and clubs around the country, as well as managing English squads and athletes across all snow sport disciplines.

This year’s championships will be held in Bormio, Italy, a resort that Luca knows well and is excited to compete at.

“I think I’m going to do really well because I like that slope a lot and it’s really fun. It’s really rock solid and hard – that’s why I love it,” he added.

That love of the sport is what motivates Luca – the enjoyment of speeding past gates and having fun doing it is what drives him on.

Having parents who work as ski instructors might add pressure to some, but for Luca and his younger twin brothers it works well, with both parents coaching him, away from the rigid intensity of the French ‘Club des Sports’ system.

Emma said: “I think Phil [Smith, husband] and I give them a lot more freedom to express their skiing their way and we don’t overcoach them.

“We didn’t necessarily set out to try and produce a world champion, I suppose it’s just kind of gone that way.

“As long as they keep enjoying it, we’ll always keep supporting them as much as we can.”

Luca had an excellent year in 2017 that saw him win the slalom at the British races and finish first for his age at the French races.

He will be competing in the super G, the giant slalom and the slalom in Bormio, but hasn’t picked a favourite event, yet.

“I love them all at the moment,” he concluded. “I just love when you come past the gates, going fast.”