5-time Winter Olympian Graham Bell reached 117.48mph (189kmh) earlier this year to become the fastest person ever towed on skis behind a vehicle.
The British Olympic ski racer managed to smash the previous record of 70mph by over 45mph. Bell took on the challenge in March 2017 at Jaguar Land Rover’s Revi Test Centre in Arjeplog in northern Sweden, close to the Arctic Circle, where the temperature was -18°F (-28°C).
For the record attempt, Bell was towed by a 380-horsepower Jaguar XF S Sportbreak car and needed to remain in a tight tucked position along the frozen track.
“The big fear was catching an edge because I was only skiing on a centimeter of snow on top of bullet-proof ice. If you fall on the flat it’s always much more painful than if you fall on a steep slope. It felt equally dangerous to racing downhill and as scary as skiing the Streif,” he says, referring to Kitzbühel’s notoriously difficult downhill course. “Actually a bit scarier.”
The current record holder for the fastest man on skis ever is Italian Ivan Origone who reached 157mph traveling downhill, without any assistance, in 2016. Bell claims he could exceed this speed, albeit behind a car. He just needs to convince Jaguar to build a longer track.