New Zealand skeleton athlete Rhys Thornbury believes he never would have reached the Winter Olympics had he chosen to compete for Great Britain.
The 28-year-old dual citizen will represent his birth nation at the PyeongChang Games after some promising results in the past two years, including an 11th at last year's world championships.
Thornbury has lamented a lack of financial support from NZ sporting bodies, instead relying heavily on an elite athlete funding program through the British Royal Air Force, where he's employed as a weapons technician.
But he is adamant falling outside the jurisdiction as a athlete of a cashed-up British federation has helped his development.
"I see all the goings-on of these big nations and how cut-throat it can be and how a couple of bad races can (see it) go the other way for these sliders," Thornbury said.
"It's really tough to see."
"Being part of a much smaller federation, it's allowed for me to be able to slide and do everything my own way.
"It means I have to pay for everything my own way, but apart from that it's great. It takes the pressure off.
"I can just develop myself at my own pace and chose my own path."
Ranked 14th in the world, the Calgary resident has set his sights on a top-10 finish in PyeongChang.
With his father British and mother a Kiwi, he moved to the UK when he was 11 before joining the RAF soon after school.
He become involved in skeleton after seeing it offered in an air force newspaper but it wasn't until the past two years an Olympics berth became a realistic.
Despite being content representing New Zealand, Thornbury knows he could not have progressed without the RAF's funding.
"They also pay my normal salary, so without that, it would be very difficult," he said.
"The sport of skeleton is very expensive.
"I don't know how you expect to compete on the Olympic stage and World Cup stage if you're having to worry about getting paid."