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N A V I G A T O R INTO
N A V I G A T O R INTO THE INFERNO In 1928, before chairlifts existed, a group of 13 men and four women from the Kandahar Ski Club climbed the Schilthorn summit in Mürren in the Swiss Alps on long hickory skis with strips of sealskin fitted to stop them from sliding back. From near the summit, they then descended to the village of Lauterbrunnen. And so the Inferno Race was born. Eight decades later, the race lives on, and it is still an event that is not for the faint-hearted. Each January 1800 skiers stand here, take a sip of schnapps for courage and head off down the Inferno. At 15km (three times as long as anything on the World Cup schedule), the trail plunges two vertical kilometres. There is nothing quite like it anywhere in the world. In August this year, James Bond stunt driver Ben Collins lined up a standard Range Rover Sport just under the peak of the Schilthorn, attempting to do something nobody has ever tried; not only to navigate the length of the Inferno in a car, but to do so at race speed, beating the record of the Inferno’s fastest skier. August in Mürren is normally warm and sunny and although there is a little snow still lingering at the top of the run, the trail is normally dry. Not so this year. Unseasonable rain threw out Land Rover Experience off-road expert Phil Jones’ calculations and put Collins’ nerves on edge; “I wouldn’t say I was smiling as I was driving,” he told Onelife, “I was in the zone. If you’re not in the zone, you’re going to be over the edge.” Collins’ progress in the very latest Range Rover Sport was nonetheless spectacular as you might expect from the most famous of the former Stigs from BBC Top Gear. His time at the finish was just shy of the ski record, which in the circumstances is almost extraordinary. “Roughly halfway down I hit a big boulder that I really couldn’t miss because it was that, a tree or a sheer cliff,” Collins explains. “The low-pressure warning told me I had a puncture in a rear tyre, and that meant a huge loss of grip on the rear axle.” Collins’ perseverance nonetheless impressed Cleeves Palmer, President of the Kandahar Ski Club and a veteran of 30 races. “The terrain is strewn with boulders,” Palmer told us. “I would far rather race it on skis in winter than drive it in the summer!” 02 NEWS WATCH THE FILM Down the Inferno landrover.com/downhillchallenge 10
Land Rover’s Onelife magazine showcases stories from around the world that celebrate inner strength and the drive to go Above and Beyond
Land Rover has always stood for the freedom to go anywhere and the ability to do anything when you get there. The latest issue of Onelife salutes this spirit, transporting you across the world in celebration of adventures ranging from the exotic to the everyday – from a town in the Indian Himalaya where classic Land Rover Series Is and IIs reign supreme, to Ireland's stunning County Donegal where seafarer Monty Halls enjoys family fun with a Discovery
Share the passion of a Land Rover-loving community in a remote corner of India
| Experience the thrills of driving on ice in the Range Rover Velar
| Explore stunning Donegal with seafarer Monty Halls and his family
| Relive the child-like sense of wonder captured at the Above & Beyond Tour
| See why the Range Rover PHEV impressed mountaineer Jimmy Chin
| Encounter the most powerful Defender: the Classic Works V8 special
Look back at the birth of the original Land Rover | How Land Rover has driven adventure and scientific exploration | GQ Editor Dylan Jones discusses inspiration with Chief Design Officer Gerry McGovern | Exploring the potential impact of electrification and connected vehicles | Tackling the 999 steep steps up to Heaven’s Gate in China
New Range Rover and Range Rover Sport Plug-in Hybrids | Why Oslo shines as a beacon of electric mobility | Uncovering Mia Suki’s unbridled passion | How Project Hero is optimising crisis response for the Austrian Red Cross | A stunning Norwegian drive in the Range Rover Velar
Unveiling of the New Range Rover Velar | Step inside some of the planet’s most exclusive homes | Man’s relationship with dogs | An epic drive through the Isle of Skye | The legendary Beechcraft Bonanza takes to the Skies
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