A video From Eric Bellande
Paul Larsen and his team “Sail Rocket” have shattered the 60 knots (65.45 knots over 500m or 121 km/h) in Walvis Bay in Namibia. This is a real technological feat and the result of years of hard work. Congratulations to him and his team.
The team is currently in Walvis Bay, Namibia and the least we can say is that there is now a huge gap between the record holder and the runner up (55.65 kts held by the kiteboader Rob Douglas).
The 500m record:
1 – 2012 – Paul Larsen (sailrocket) – 65.45 kts World Record Speed Sailing
2 – 2010 – Rob DOUGLAS (kiteboarding) – 55.65 kts Kitesurf World Record
3 – 2010 – Sébastien CATTELAN (kiteboarding) – 55.49 kts
4 – Alexander Caizergues (kiteboarding) – 54.93 kts
5 – Sébastien SALERNO (kiteboarding) – 54.28 kts
6 – Sylvain Hoceini (kiteboarding) – 52.90
7 – Antoine Albeau (windsurfing) – 52.05 kts Windsurf World Record
Windsurfing World Record Attempt: Day 3
Even though the forecast has announced only moderate wind, riders were really motivated to hit the gust again today!
The atmosphere was unusually peaceful – this group of competitors is really enjoying the conditions and the event, without hesitating to put their hands into the sand to help achieve the common objective: break records.
The current speed windsurfing Namibian record holder Matthias Röttcher watched the event in the media and decided to take his 4×4 across the desert to join us early this morning and take the chance to claim a new record! After testing the channel he improved his existing record of 41.44 kts to 42.32 kts.
Windsurfers from all over the world are following the event and are starting to realize that the Luderitz Speed Challenge is one of the biggest opportunities for them to be in the speed sailing limelight together with boats & kitesurfers.
The international support to riders and organisers is unbelievable. Encouragement from all corners of the world is streaming in.
On day 3, Zara was again the 1st to jump into the water, and it is paying off: thanks to her we open the race every day by celebrating a new record, and thereafter it does not stop!
Antoine Albeau was leading the day with 48.57 kts but Anders Bringdal went further with 48.60 kts, improving the World Windsurfing Record on production board, and claiming the new Swedish Record.
Dieter Gerichhausen again beat the German record in Windsurfing with 44.01 kts, but – like yesterday – was followed by Christian Bornemann who was faster still, ending with a new German record with 44.41 kts.
Their German team mate Christian Benzing went faster in less wind today and come closer with 42.81kts!
Patrick Diethelm went faster in less wind with 46.55kts, improving his Swiss Record from yesterday.
Lena improved her Turkish record with 42.6 kts.
Cédric Bordes managed to reach the 3rd best speed of the day with 47.83 kts.
During the 2012 “Lüderitz Speed Challenge” 16 different nationalities will come together over 6 weeks.
This week France, Germany, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Turkey and Sweden have sent their representatives.
The first 2 days of this Windsurfing World Record Attempt have already created a communication buzz all over the world!
Antoine Albeau, who is currently – and has been for 20 times in the past – the World Champion in Slalom held the previous World Windsurfing Record of 49.09 kts (2008), has just broken it again today with 49.41 kts!
The fact that this close-to-50-knots record was set in only 38 knots of wind, makes us all see the possibilities of the next days with more serious wind conditions!
The Swedish legend Anders Bringdal, who lead the 1st day, broke the World Record in Windsurfing on Production board twice on day two – and he improved his national Record to 48.38 knots!
The Female World Record in Windsurfing was broken twice by Zara Davis who obviously enjoys the news concept and the new “Lüderitz Speed Challenge” channel! With 44.19 knots she is also the fastest Female British sailor.
Lena Aylin Erdil has also learnt how to go fast in a few runs, breaking the Female Turkish Record several times during the past two days, reaching 41.53 knots.
Farrel O’Shea has expertly defended his colours by beating the UK Record twice, ending with 46.15 knots!
Patrick Diethelm who holds the Italian Record is a double Record Holder. Sailing under the flag of Switzerland this year, he broke the Swiss Record with 46.29 knots.
The French rider Cédric Bordes managed to sail the exact time of the previous Windsurfing Record showing 49.09 knots!
The German competitors are on track and produced excellent times, alternating the record position among them. Christian Bornemann broke the German record in windsurfing twice during the past two days, and he currently holds it at 43.93 knots while Dieter Gerichhausen reached 42.92 knots, holding this record for a time during the day. Christian Benzing from “Chris Benz watches” reached a personal best with 40.33 knots, not far behind his fellow countrymen.
The “Lüderitz Speed Challenge” 2012 is officially opened.
The ceremony gathered the members of the Town Council, the sponsors, the local committee, the inhabitants of Lüderitz, and the riders.
In a relaxed and friendly atmosphere, windsurfers attended the very first briefing.
On Monday, the Windsurfers went through their mental and physical preparation to become familiar with the canal !
With the arrival of Antoine Albeau, Alberto Possati and Cédric Bordes, the team is being assembled for the first week of the “Lüderitz Speed Challenge” 2012.
Full of Energy, The Windsurfing team is headed up by Anders BRINGDAL, who is spokesman for the group, which is promising. There is a feeling of “Unity and strength”…
Here is a list of riders:
The Lüderitz Speed Challenge 2012
Since 2007, records were smashed successively, performances have increased, the « Lüderitz Speed Challenge », World record Attempt in Speed Sailing has become a major event with a media impact which has developed the “speed” discipline and has well participated to the kitesurfing industry evolution. Nevertheless, its organizors, Sébastien Cattelan and Sophie Routaboul have seen there the opportunity for the windsurfers to come back in front of the stage and find a location with the best conditions to express themselves. So, from 2009, after several tests, the report sets: the potential is there, let’s build a CANAL…
2010 EDITION set a new record and all the nations know that Lüderitz is the fastest spot in the World!.
THANKS TO THE NEW CANAL BUILT IN THE BAY, THE ULTIMATE RECORD IS SMASHED: 55.65 Knots.
Only two years after the 50 knots barrier was broken, the 55 Knots (103 km/h) barrier was smashed: 100km/h (54.10 knots) and “The Lüderitz Speed Challenge” have managed to get back the title from the multi-million boat “L’Hydroptère” (51.36 knots). Only 2 competitors in the world have reached the 55 knots so far:
Sébastien Cattelan (55.49 kts-European Record) and Rob Douglas (55.65 kts-Ultimate World Record)
2011 WAS THE BEGINNING OF A NEW AREA from an historical project:
Although the 2010 canal made the world of a difference, the conditions still need improvement for faster records to be set, especially to represent the windsurfing community which is huge in the World. Thus Sébastien Cattelan, Sophie Routaboul and his team have invested a lot of money and time to research the possibilities of widening and lengthening the canal, and creating even smoother water surfaces for faster speeds, deeper water but also improving the safety of the finish area.
After 1 year battling to set up the project and get the authorizations, they manage to dig that canal with the support of the Namibian Ministry of Environment & Tourism,according to what they have learnt from performances, tests and experiences they made during their career.
The legend Anders Bringdal took part of this new edition as a windsurfing consultant to be able to invite all the top sailors in the world.
SUCCESS: never before a windsurfer have reached a top speed of 50,7 knots (94 km/h).
0n 10 competitors of this testing-team, 5 records were broken.
The test of this Team is a revelation: this new canal which was improved step by step until the end of the 2011 event is THE solution and will be the playground of many competitors next year as they all have realized its potential.
LUDERITZ SPEED CHALLENGE 2012 PROJECT: Old records are no news, however… Chase the unimaginable 60 knots barrier now: The Lüderitz Speed Challenge has this as its main goal and sole focus.
No other event or place in the world would be more suitable to attempt this crazy record. Organizers have worked really hard to create the right environment conducive to making it happen. It’s the combination of all their experience from previous years and of course the location which gives them the criteria they need (strong and stable wind, good angle…) which will operate.
All the arrangements have been made to manage to create a canal with all the skills that windsurfers need to join kitesurfers (record: 55,65 knots) and boats (record: 51,36 knots) in that real challenge. After obtaining the authorizations, an artificial canal was dug 300m from the bay: 1 month of hard tests and researches, making improvements, were realized during the 2011 edition to be able to present the big 2012 Challenge which will be even more watched and followed in all over the world, where the best top sailors will battle for the World title or their nation.
The list of the selected competitors will be communicated in the beginning of July for an Attempt which will happen from the 5 November to 2 December for windsurfers (registrations number being more important) and from 3 to 16 December for kitesurfers, to avoid the comparison between 2 different crafts.
Here is a video of the construction of the new canal and of some the top speed tests recorded last month in Lüderitz to polish the speed run for the Lüderitz Speed Challenge 2012.
Source : Lüderitz Speed Challenge/Adrien Freville
The Hydra and Luderitz
23 October 2011
Today was a light wind day (in the 20′s) and marked the start of a new wind cycle. It was a great introduction for the riders to the new canal. The finishing area is wide and long, and instills the confidence needed to cross the finish at full speed. The depth is more than adequate, and we’ll test out windsurfers on it within a few days time.
The wind was very gusty today, and the Genetrix kites helped prevent unnecessary accidents due to unforeseen gusts and lulls mid-run. They handle gusts like no other and have the biggest depower range, which makes them ideal for Luderitz.
The best average speed was 45 knots, with peaks just less than 50 knots. The wind is expected to blow stronger tomorrow, so let’s see what speeds the new canal can yield.
“What I found is there seems to be a lot more wind towards the end of the run, but time will tell when it blows stronger. Getting back to the start was done by either beating back upwind in the lagoon and walking the rest of the way, or catching a lift on the back of a bakkie. The timing system worked flawlessly, so we’re all set for the big day to see what speeds are possible”.
The World Record Attempt in Speed Sailing
Namibia: October 20th – November 17th 2011
The “Lüderitz Speed Challenge” has been held in Namibia since 2007, and is a World Record Attempt in Speed Sailing that has produced more than 40 World & National Records to date.
The organisers, Sophie Routaboul and Sébastien Cattelan have constantly innovated in their attempt to push the limits, and have recently obtained authorisation to dig a new channel away from the Second Lagoon shoreline, which has been used thus far. This is necessary to make it possible to break the 60 knot barrier (over 500m), which is the new challenge (115km/h under sail). Last year, the famous hydrofoil boat “L’Hydroptère” held the Outright Record with 51.36 knots (95km/h over 500m), but was beaten during “The 2010 Lüderitz Speed Challenge” by the kitesurfers who established the World Record in Speed Sailing with 55.65 knots (64/mph, 103km/h over 500m).
This has been a large scale and difficult project to undertake, which made these two driven extreme sports enthusiasts decide to officially test the newly built channel before taking on the responsibility of organising a fully-fledged event. A full scale event is planned for 2012 where numerous international competitors will be invited.
As the stakes increase and the speeds achieved are pushed higher, the organisation of each event has become more challenging in itself.
The consequences of this recognised official record attempt are far reaching. This event combines an environmental aspect together with the efficiency of wind power, and the human, tourism and commercial aspects, while bringing to the front stage an African country: Namibia. This is where kitesurfing (while still in its infancy), has been propelled into the headlines as being the world’s fastest craft on water.
Will this incredible and daring feat allow them to beckon in the dawn of a new playground for the windsurfing community, and give them access to the exclusive 50+ knot club? The results speak for themselves: over the past four years everything possible has been done to increase the potential of this unbelievable site, which has made the constant climb of speed sailing records possible.
The answer will be revealed between 20th October and 17th November 2011, which are the dates of the event during which windsurfing and kitesurfing performances will be done…. with the kind support of the sponsors : LM Wind Power, Genetrix and its team, SunPass Cream, The agency Chaffron Insurance, Kitaddict and the Lüderitz Community.
Despite lower than expected 35 knot wind and choppy water, 3 riders achieved speeds of over 50 knots today. Catman, Rob Douglas and Sed Salerno all did it in less wind that was previously required. Zsolt Lenkei improved on his personal best from 39,75 to 42. As the wind was increasing, the tide was too high to go on.
Sophie Routaboul got close to female world record today (45 flashed on the display), in spite of breaking her hand only a week ago.
The above speeds are not official yet.
A great BBQ was organized by the locals and the Luderitz sponsors yesterday in the second lagoon. The respite in the wind was the perfect opportunity to share some good time with the townsfolk. There was enough wind for the competitors to give some of the local kids (and moms) the opportunity to fly a kite. Thalassa is producing a 26 minutes documentary about the town, its history and the Luderitz Speed Challenge. keep en eye open for it.
The next few days are windfree until Tuesday when wind is forecast again, giving competitors time to rest.
Adrien Fréville photographie
As expected, the wind was great when it finally got going (35-43), but the water level was too low by this time. The strip had to be closed as the WRSSC deemed it to be too shallow.
Here is a picture taken @ the time the wind was offering record breaking conditions. Too bad the tide wasn’t favorable this time around!
Nonetheless, the new speed strip proved to be a winner – with 4 new National records being set:
Rob Douglas – USA, 52.58 knots
Taro Niehaus – South Africa, 50.62 knots
Marc Avella – Spain, 48.55 knots
Jernej Privsek – Slovenia, 46.22 knots.
These records have not yet been officiated by the WSSRC – we are waiting for them to be officialised.
The wind will now take a break until later next week, so it’s time to tune equipment and get ready for the next blow. It’s moving back to spring tides from tomorrow, so let’s hope it blows before spring highs wreck our track again. The course maintenance cannot keep up during this period, but at least we won’t have water depth issues.
Only a handful of sailors have broken the 50 knot barrier. In order: Alex CAIZERGUES, Seb CATELLAN, Rob DOUGLAS, l’Hydroptère, Gavin BROADBENT, Seb SALERNO.
They really stamped their dominance on the sport by breaking the record by the biggest single margin in the sport’s history. 54.1 knots is impressive as it exceeds 60 mph and over 100kph…
Let’s not forget to acknowledge the effort put by Seb Cattelan and the event team who have put in long arduous hours to rebuild the channel that mother nature reclaims every high tide. The organizers have continued to optimize the course and have seen the results improve with each iteration.
Today wasn’t a record breaking day. Wind was @ 35 knots but you can see Catman & Bringdal having fun in light wind.
Tomorrow, Friday, apparently it is going to be the apocalypse. Today the run wasn’t usable before 5:00pm because low tide was at 2:20pm. Tomorrow the optimal time to use the run is between 11:00am and 1:00pm, since low tide is at 4:00pm.
Alex’s incredible run will definitely drive the contenders to push the limit! Some insane competition coming up between Alex and Catman.
Alex Caizergues has officially set a new World Speed Sailing Record at 54.10 knots during his 1st run at 15h38 yesterday afternoon.
5 New National records were broken on the same day:
Sebastien Cattelan (France) 52.33 (2nd fastest outright)
Rob Douglas (USA) 51.88 (National Record)
Gavin Broadbent (New Zealand) 50.93 (National Record)
Sebastien Salerno (France) 50,75
Tim Pumpa (Australia) 46.78 (National Record)
Charlotte Consorti (France) 45.23 (French Womens National record)
Anders Bringdal (Sweden) 44.80 (National Record)
Zara Davis (UK) 36.99 (Female World performance with Production Board)
The battle for the title of “the fastest speed sailor in the world” is far from over, with more big winds forecast in Luderitz for not only this week, but for most of October !
F@!#! i wish i was there !!!!
Sebastien “Catman” Cattelan, the organizer of Luderitz Speed Challenge and also the first to break the 50 knot barrier, has been working long hours to improve the channel, thereby increasing the average speed over the 500m course. In the previous 2 years, the competitors had to change their angle to the wind three times during the speed run. The first angle was the slowest, creating a gap of 10 knots between the riders’ slowest speed and their fastest at the end of the run. With the new run (see photo) they can hope to diminish this gap by half. The only downside is that it doesn’t leave them with much room to stop… Catman’s solution: simply kiteloop at the end of the run, slowing your speed down and sending you downwind as opposed to turning upwind. This would also leave the end of the run free for the next rider.
The 4th Event, World Record Attempt in Speed Sailing.
Speed Sailing has become an international inter-disciplinary sport. For many years an ongoing
challenge existed between Windsurfers, Hydrofoil boats and Kite Surfers to smash records
The event is held under the scrutiny of the World Speed Sailing Record Council (WSSRC) and the International Sailing Federation (ISAF). As such, it conforms to the WSSRC rules and allows for international validation of national, continental or world records established during the event.
Sebastien Cattelan became the 1st sailor to break the 50 knot barrier in 2008 with 50.52 knots. Alex Caizergues then improved this to 50.57 knots the very next day.
Alex Caizergues managed to improve this to 50.98 knots in 2009, just shy of the 51.36 knots outright record set by Hydroptere.
The objective for the 2010 edition of the Lüderitz Speed Challenge is to reclaim the outright world record set by Hydroptere.