Elias Ambühl sets new 131kph world switch skiing speed record

It’s official: no one is faster at skiing backwards than Swiss freestyle skier Elias Ambühl!

During a training session at Arosa in Switzerland Elias Ambühl decided to turn up the heat, setting a new world switch – backwards – skiing record in the process. Spinning 180° at the top of his run in he clocked up a final speed of 131.23kph (81.54mph), beating the previous record of 128.7kph (79.97mph) set by Norwegian Anders Backe in 2013.

131.23 km/h: Der schnellste Rückwärts-Skifahren der Welt heisst Elias Ambühl – #h4tw (official)

Der erfolgreiche Bündner Freestyle-Skifahrer Elias Ambühl, 24, aus Masein hat es geschafft. Frei nach dem Motto: “Helvetia 4 The Win” – holt er den Weltrekord im Rückwärtsskifahren in die Schweiz. Er knackte mit 131,23 km/h den Rekord des Norwegers Anders Backe, der 2012 mit 128.7 km/h rückwärts eine Skischanze herunterfuhr.

That’s a phenomenal speed to be skiing backwards, which is inherently much more unstable than skiing normally, to say nothing of the reduced field of vision. To give a bit of context, the fastest speed recorded in World Cup downhill ski racing is 161.9kph, set by Johan Clarey of France during the downhill in Wengen in 2013.