This Is What It Feels Like To Rocket Downhill At 145 km/h During Olympic Skeleton Racing

Remember the feelings of thrill and terror when you launched your sled down a steep snow-covered hill? American Skeleton racer John Daly has been doing that competitively for 15 years, but his sled, which slides down an ice-covered bobsled using a pair of metal runners, can actually hit speeds of up to 145 kilometres per hour.

It’s hard to fathom what it’s like to hit speeds that fast outside of a motorised vehicle, so CNN’s Great Big Story series strapped a video camera to Daly’s helmet to capture one of his mile-long downhill runs. The results are a blur of flashing lights and turns that seem to come out of nowhere.

At 145km/h, Daly experiences five Gs of force heading into the track’s banked corners, which makes his eight-pound head, sitting just an inch above the ice, feel like it weighs 18kg instead. Given how dangerous a mistake on the track can be, it makes you wonder if that gold medal is really worth it.