Mikaela Shiffrin takes flight for ‘most incredible’ experience of her life

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Mikaela Shiffrin has raced downhill at 80 miles per hour. She has filmed a commercial with Roger Federer. She’s even zipped into a bib draw on a dirt bike.

But what happened on Tuesday?

“The most incredible thing I’ve ever experienced,” the two-time Olympic champion said.

Shiffrin joined the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds, riding in and even flying an F-16D twin-seat trainer aircraft out of Peterson Air Force Base in her native Colorado. She said that the trained pilots perform maneuvers at 450 to 500 mph.

“You can’t breathe at that much force,” Shiffrin said after pulling nine Gs herself. “So you have to do the tiniest little breaths. … I’m so dizzy. My knees are shaking.”

Shiffrin’s friend, fellow Olympic champion and Coloradan Missy Franklin flew above and around Pikes Peak in an F-16 in 2015.

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