13 November 2011:
Mother nature had the final say today, and it only blew 30 knots with occasional gusts. Seb clocked the best speed of the day with 51.36 knots. He was the only contender over 50 knots.
Congratulations to Anders Bringdal (50.72 Vmax) and Taro Niehaus (51.64 knots) for their performance record, and to Seb, Sophie and the rest of the team and sponsors for making this event possible.
Sébastien is confident he can reach 60 knots in kitesurfing, and is making it his goal. Windsurfing speeds currently trail that of kitesurfing, but Sebastian has made it his first priority to create optimal conditions in the canal for the windsurfers to push the limits.
Positive energy is needed to manage this adventure, and an interesting challenge lies ahead for us to discover how best to achieve this. We need to share ideas and opinions with people who have different experience with the sea so we can collaboratively create the ideal run.
The new canal has proved to be more beneficial for windsurfers than for kitesurfers thus far, but some options still remain to improve this for both disciplines.
Although the organizers treated this year as a test for the new canal (which was dug just before the start), the results look very promising and windsurfing legend, Anders Bringdal, managed to reach truly impressive speeds on his first day. He had a 50.72 Vmax, which is a first in windsurfing history.
Kite surfing records and performances will follow – step by step the dream of this Team has been realized over the past 5 years, and the much improved run in the ideal location will usher in a new era in speed sailing and become the perfect platform for international and outright records.
Sponsors who choose to be part of this will play a pivotal role in shaping sailing history.
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.
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.