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. The current world record for skiing is 251.4 km/h (156 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; about 190 km/h (120 mph) in the belly-to-earth position. 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 mandatory back protector to give some protection in the case of a crash.
The special skis used must be 2.4 metres (94.5 inches) long and maximum 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 practised on steep, specially designed courses one kilometre long. There are approximately thirty of these courses worldwide, many of them at high altitudes to minimize air resistance. The first 300 or 400 metres of the course (the launching area) is used to gain speed, the top speed is measured in the next 100 metres (the timing zone) and the last 500 metres (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 kilometre course.
Other articles related to "skiing, speed skiing":
1950 and Arc 2000—are situated at an altitude spanning from 810 to 3225 metres, although skiing is mostly possible above 1200 metres ... In Arc 2000 you also find the famous speed skiing course used in the 1992 Olympics (Speed skiing at the 1992 Winter Olympics) ... The current world records in speed skiing was set in Les Arcs with Italian Simone Origone at 251.4 km/h (156.2 mph) and Swedish Sanna Tidstrand at 242.59 ...
... Nicolas Bochatay, 27, speed skier, accident at the 1992 Winter Olympics. ...
... spanning from 810 to 3225 metres, although skiing is mostly possible above 1200 metres ... In Arc 2000 you also find the famous speed skiing course used in the 1992 Olympics (Speed skiing at the 1992 Winter Olympics) ... The current world records in speed skiing was set in Les Arcs with Italian Simone Origone at 251.4 km/h (156.2 mph) and Swedish Sanna Tidstrand at 242.59 km/h (150.74 mph ...
Famous quotes containing the word speed:
“It was undoubtedly the feeling of exilethat sensation of a void within which never left us, that irrational longing to hark back to the past or else to speed up the march of time, and those keen shafts of memory that stung like fire.”
—Albert Camus (19131960)