BBC Sport insidesport


Related BBC sites

Page last updated at 15:09 GMT, Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Michael Johnson explores downhill danger - Inside Sport

Inside Sport - the dangers of the downhill

Legendary American athlete and skiing fanatic Michael Johnson hits the piste for Inside Sport to discover why downhill skiers risk life and limb in the pursuit of glory.

It is one of the most dangerous sports in the world - hurtling down a mountain at speeds of up to 80mph, competitors only have a lycra suit and a crash helmet to protect them.

Johnson talks to some of the biggest names in the sport, including skiing greats Franz Klammer and Hermann Maier, as well as experts from the world of psychology and neurology.

He also meets the current Olympic champion Antoine Deneriaz, who suffered a sickening crash just weeks after winning gold at Turin 2006 and has not competed since. The Frenchman explains how watching replays of the accident persuaded him to retire from the sport he loved.

Chemmy Alcott's video profile

Also featured in the programme is Swiss skier Silvano Beltrametti, whose promising career was abruptly cut short by a high-speed fall at Val d'Isere which has left him paralysed and in a wheelchair.

Having witnessed the world's best skiers in action, Johnson seeks answers to the questions that have intrigued him for years.

What are these daredevils thinking about as they throw themselves out of the start hut? How do they conquer their fears? And why do spectators love watching the often horrifying consequences of their mistakes?

Print Sponsor

see also
Gallagher added to Vancouver team
03 Feb 10 |  Disability Sport
Chemmy Alcott's video profile
26 Jan 10 |  Vancouver 2010
Alpine skiing: Downhill
03 Nov 09 |  Alpine skiing
Ski Sunday on the BBC
09 Jan 10 |  Ski Sunday
Ski casualty list causes concern
13 Dec 09 |  Alpine skiing
Olympic champion Deneriaz retires
05 Dec 07 |  Winter Sports
Deneriaz wins shock downhill gold
12 Feb 06 |  Winter Sports
Swiss skier paralysed
09 Dec 01 |  Other Sports

related bbc links:

related internet links:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites