Speed skiing

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Speed skiing is the sport of skiing downhill in a straight line as quickly as possible. It is one of the fastest non-motorized sports on land.[1] The current world record for skiing is 252.45 km/h (nearly 157 mph), held by Simone Origone. Speed skiers regularly exceed 200 km/h (125 mph), which is even faster than the terminal velocity of a free-falling skydiver in the belly-to-earth position (about 190 km/h; 120 mph). Speed skiers wear dense foam fairings on their lower legs and aerodynamic helmets to increase streamlining. Their ski suits are made from air-tight latex or have a polyurethane coating to reduce wind resistance, with only a minimal (but mandatory) back protector to give some protection in the case of a crash.

The special skis used must be 240 centimetres (94 in) long and at most 10 cm wide with a maximum weight of 15 kg for the pair. Ski boots are attached to the skis by bindings. The ski poles are bent to shape around the body, and must be a minimum of 1 m long.

Speed skiing is practiced on steep, specially designed courses one kilometer long. There are approximately thirty of these courses worldwide, many of them at high altitudes to minimize air resistance. The first 300 or 400 meters of the course (the launching area) is used to gain speed, the top speed is measured in the next 100 m (the timing zone) and the last 500 m (the run-out area) is used for slowing down and coming to a stop. The start point in FIS races is chosen so that, in theory, skiers should not exceed 200 km/h, hence competition is aimed at winning a particular event, not breaking world speed records. At Pro races, there is no maximum speed and the speed attained is determined by conditions and safety.

Speed skiing was a demonstration sport at the Albertville 1992 Winter Olympics in the Les Arcs 2 kilometer course.

Official world records

The following are the records under the F.S.V. (France Ski de Vitesse) rules. As of April 29, 2005, there were 328 speed skiers who had skied faster than 200 km/h.


Simone Origone (de) (Italy) 252.632 km/h (156.978 mph); Vars, France, April 3, 2015

Disabled men

Michael Milton (Australia) 213.65 km/h (132.76 mph); circa April 20, 2006[2]


Sanna Tidstrand (Sweden), 242.59 km/h (150.74 mph); Les Arcs, France, December 20, 2015[3]


Eric Barone (France), 223.30 km/h (138.75 mph); Vars, France, March 28, 2015[4]

See also


  1. The fastest non-motorized sport without land contact is speed skydiving, in which divers can reach speeds of over 500 km/h.[1]
  2. http://www.michaelmilton.com/SpeedSkiing.aspx Michael Milton - speed skiing
  3. http://www.pocski.com/?m=3&n=2006-04-20
  4. GrindTV, Eric Barone sets mountain bike speed record