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.
Taro Niehaus of team Genetrix has set a new South African record of 51.64 knots, and Seb had 51.2. I’m not sure what Anders’s 500m average was, but he had another 50+ peak today (50.3 kts).
This is a phenomenal effort and well deserved; Taro didn’t hold back, which takes a lot of guts and confidence in your equipment and ability. It was not easy going out there, and despite this he came out unscathed and clocked the best speed so far.
Well done Lighty, I salute your achievement !!!
Strong wind is forecast until Sunday, so I’m sure the speeds will climb further.
Seb took a break over the past week and I have not doubt that he will dial it in before Sunday, which is forecast to be the strongest day.
Source: Basil Cambanis
Another one from Basil but this time the view is from the kite. He does get pretty close to the bank at one stage. Probably looking up at the cam 🙂
“I stuck my camera onto one of the struts today to get an areal view of the canal. It’s alignment was slightly off, but not bad considering. The wind was a mild 20 knots at the time and I used my 12 sqm v4 Genetrix Hydra kite. As you can tell from the footage, the water state is excellent. We’re waiting until next week when stronger wind is forecast, then things will get interesting.”
Here is a video from Basil Cambanis. Take a ride with him on his Genetrix Hydra down the speed run in Luderitz, Namibia. The new canal has been built in the salt pan a few hundred meters upwind of Second Lagoon. It looks impressive, and with the longer run-up and finish it’s bound to be faster.
At the same time, there is a speed event organized by The North American Speed Sailing Project (NASSP). SOME of the Fastest Sailors are competing for the $27000 prize at Martha’s Vineyard in October 2011.
It will be interesting to see who will break the 55.65 kts over 500m set by Rob Douglas in Luderitz in 2010.
NASSP———————————————————-or the Luderitz Speed Challenge ???
One of them looks like a holiday and the other like suicide. Good luck to all and be safe!
On 28 of October, Sebastien Cattelan was the first person to reach a speed of over 55 knots average over 500m with a Genetrix Hydra 9 meter kite and an Xcelerator board.
There’s no wind today and tomorrow. Friday to Monday still looks promising. The spring high tide will be between 2:30pm and 3:39pm over the weekend. Lets hope the competitors find some flat water and the wind necessary to break some more records. Sunday to Monday might be the last decent wind they’ll have to do so. The wind usually peaks around 3:00pm. Here is what the tide looks like for the next few days.
Fri (Low 8:33 / High 14:38 / Low 20:50)
Sat (Low 9:02 / High 15:08 / Low 21h19)
Sun (Low 9:32 / High 15:39 / Low 21:48)
Mon (Low 10.04/ High 16:12/ Low 22:20)
The Genetrix Team posing at Luderitz Speed Challenge 2010: Martial Camblong – France, Sebastien Cattelan – France, Tim Pumpa – Australia (record), Sophie Routaboul -France, Basil Cambanis – South Africa, Fred Kloren – Netherlands, Marc Avella – Spain (record). Missing on the picture : Zolt Lenkey – Hungary, Taro Niehaus – South Africa (record) and Leila Lelouar – France.
Here a video of a run down the channel at high tide by Basil Cambanis. The first part of the vid is at low tide. The end of the channel needs to be redone after spring high tide filled it a few days ago. Thankfully, the tide is moving towards neap (Friday 15th), so there’ll be much less damage until the next Spring tide. The windsurfers haven’t had a decent crack at it yet due to the canal getting damaged each day, but that will change this week as improvements to the canal should remain intact.
The Luderitz forecast until Friday looks 30+ everyday!
The digging has improved the flatness of the course, but with the piling of the sand on the windward side of the course it has dramatically increased the winds turbulence. Here is a short video of Zara’s 33 knot run.
LUDERITZ SPEED CHALLENGE 2010 will bring together famous Windsurfers and Kitesurfers from all over the world:
The Overall Speed record: 51,36 knots(set by hydrofoil boat)
The Kitesurfing Women’s record: 45,20 knots (set by kite boarding)
The Kitesurfing Men’s record: 50,98 knots
The Windsurfing Men’s Record: 49,09 knots
The Windsurfing Women’s Record: 41,25 knots
COMPETITORS (as of 30 Sep 2010)
– Miss SOPHIE ROUTABOUL (France)
– Mr SEBASTIEN CATTELAN (France)
– Mr SYLVAIN HOCEINI (France)
– Mr ALEX CAIZERGUES (France)
– Mr CHRIS PRIN GUENON (France)
– Mr MANU TAUB (France)
– Mr SEBASTIEN SALERNO (France)
– Mr PATRICE MENOSSI (France)
– Miss CHARLOTTE CONSORTI (France)
– Mr TARO NIEHAUS (South Africa)
– Mr BASIL CAMBANIS (South Africa)
– Miss SJOUKJE BREDENKAMP (South Africa)
– Mr ROB DOUGLAS (USA)
– Mr JAMIE DOUGLAS (USA)
– Mr MORGAN DOUGLAS (USA)
– Mr JERNEJ PRIVSEK (Slovenia)
– Mr FRED FLOREN (Holland)
– Mr STEFAN METZGER (Namibia)
– Mr GAVIN BROADBENT (New Zealand)
– Mr TIM PUMPA (Australia)
– Mr ZOLT LENKEI (Hungary)
– Mr MARC AVELLA (Spain)
– Mr ANDERS BRINGDAL (France)
– Miss ZARA DAVIS (GB)
– Mr FARELL O SHEA (GB)
– Mr ANDREA BALDINI (Italy)
– Mr ALBERTO POSSATI (Italy)
– Mr NICK VARDALAXOS (Greece)
Cela promet du grand spectacle sur le run… Affaire à suivre de près !