By Rebecca English
Racing up a storm: Kate Middleton roared with delight as Prince William took the controls of a snowmobile in Courchevel, France
If she ends up becoming his princess, Kate Middleton will have to get used to trailing in Prince William's wake.
In the meantime she is snuggling up as close as she can. Or rather, clinging on for dear life as he races around their ski resort on a snowmobile.
The couple took off on a breakneck tour of the French Alps during their week's skiing holiday in Courchevel.
Kate, 28, roared with delight as William, 27, took the snowmobile controls. At one point he turned round to make sure she was holding on before putting his foot down and taking off in a flurry of snow.
Snowmobiles can go as fast as 80mph, although the couple are thought to have travelled a little more leisurely than that.
They joined Kate's parents, her sister Pippa and brother James on holiday, staying in a chalet that costs up to £15,000 a week to rent.
Two's company... Kate was joined by her sister Pippa Middleton (far right) and another friend
Riding in a winter wonderland: The Prince and Kate share a private word
The chalet comes with its own own chef and steam room. It is understood that it was hired and paid for by the Middletons but that William may have made a personal contribution towards the cost of his stay.
Despite the obvious mod cons of their accommodation, the couple still managed to tear themselves away to sample some of the area's legendary apres-ski - holding hands as they walked through the village's picturesque snow-covered streets.
It is the fourth time that Kate has joined the future king for a holiday abroad in the last 12 months.
The couple are renowned for their love of exotic locations and have spent time on the paradise island of Mustique and in the South of France. They also skied in Courchevel around the same time last year.
Need for speed: Kate holds tight of William as he whizzes through the snow
In addition, the pair regularly pop off for shooting weekends in the country and enjoyed a mini-break with Prince Charles at Birkhall, his Scottish retreat, over the New Year.
William is currently training in Wales to become an RAF Search and Rescue helicopter pilot. He decided to take advantage of an unexpected break in the course to squeeze in a week's ski-ing as he is unlikely to have any more time off between now and August, when it ends.
He and Kate, who have been dating since meeting as students at St Andrews University, are continually plagued by rumours of an impending engagement but friends say they are unlikely to wed before next year.
Not too cold then: Kate and William weren't wearing any gloves, scarves or hats, as they enjoyed the last few weeks of the ski season
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