This 1st day was perfect to let kitesurfers discover the channel and is looking very promising for better results in stronger wind!! The wind was slowly increasing this afternoon, starting with 20-25 knots.
Sébastien Cattelan, the French record holder quickly went over 50 knots in the light conditions, followed by the other French rider Sébastien Salerno (4th fastest kitesurfer in the World). Sébastien Cattelan did 4 runs over 50 knots to lead the way with 51.97 knots, he hit a nice gust which reached 30 knots; he was on a 9m2 Delta-shape GENETRIX Origin.
Sébastien Salerno finished the day with 2 runs over 50 knots; his best run was 50.59 knots ! He used a 9m2 Delta-Shape ZEEKO.
Jochen Bock, the German from Fuerte improved his previous best speed (42 kts) on his first run with 43.02 knots, and later broke the Kite surfing German Record with 46.6 knots. He got close to National German Record held by the windsurfer Christian Bornemann (46.75 kts), who set it last week during Windsurfing World Record Attempt portion of the Lüderitz Speed challenge. He used a 9m2 Flat GENETRIX Hydra.
WORLD RECORD ATTEMPT: WINDSURF
The first ever Outright Windsurfing World Record was set by Pascal Maka, who clocked 38.86 knots in 1986 (1st Windsurfing Record was in 1983: Fred Haywood: 1st at 30 knots). After this things went a little quiet, though a promising phenomenon was brewing near the tip of Africa. The Lüderitz Speed Challenge was born in 2007 and by October 2008 the event had entered the annals of sailing history, after the event’s kitesurfing co-organizer Sébastien Cattelan broke through the mythical 50 knots barrier. From that moment on, records have continued to tumble here on one of the world’s harshest coastlines.
The wind speeds that enable these incredible feats are the result of warm desert winds meeting the cold waters of the Atlantic Ocean, creating a massive pressure differential. What remained was for the organizer’s to study the local conditions in meticulous detail and to use their world-beating sailing expertise to continually improve the 500m run to the point at which, today, the event serves a model for other world-record breaking attempts around the world.
After the development of a channel on the margins of the lagoon in 2009 Lüderitz became home to the fastest ever sail speeds, speeds which received world press when kite surfers shattered world records several times (ending with 55.65 knots).
The lagoon-side innovation continued and for the Lüderitz Speed Challenge 2012 the organizers excavated an extraordinary artificial channel at a remove from the lagoon, resulting in flatter, safer conditions that enabled the big names of the windsurfing community to book their tickets for Namibia.
Three days into the four week windsurfing component of the Lüderitz Speed Challenge 2012 Frenchman Antoine Albeau improved the Windsurfing World Record with an average recorded time of 49.41 knots. Six days later his countryman Cédric Bordes clocked 49.66 knots but this was soon surpassed by Swiss Patrick Diethelm’s speed of 49.71 knots. It was clear that the 50 knot threshold was going to be pushed and it was Anders Bringdal from Sweden who became the first ever windsurfer to do so with a time of 50.43 knots, though his triumph was short-lived as Albeau finished that day with a time of 50.62 knots. Pushed on a daily basis by Bringdal, Albeau broke the World Record eight times over the competition’s four weeks period, ending with the fastest time of 52.05 knots. Albeau was joined in making history by the fastest female of the event, Zara Davis of Britain, who posted a windsurfing world record speed of 45.83 knots (made on Production board).
12 national multi-discipline records were broken during the course of the event, which is incredible when one considers that 13 nations were represented. The records were as follows :
SWEDEN: Anders Bringdal: 51.45 kts (95.3 kph) which is also the World Record on Production Board. NETHERLANDS: Jurjen Van Der Noord: 51.26 kts (94.9 kph) SWITZERLAND: Patrick Diethelm : 50.49 kts (93.5 kph) and then Bjorn Dunkerbeck: 51.09 kts (94.6 kph) GREECE: Nick Vardalachos: 50.56 kts (93.6 kph) GERMANY: Christian Bornemann: 46.75 kts (86.5 kph) UNITED KINGDOM: Farrel O’Shea: 48.82 kts (90.4 kph) FEMALE UNITED KINGDOM: Zara Davis: 45.83 kts (84.8 kph) FEMALE TURKISH: Lena Erdil: 45.74 kts (84.7 kph) ITALIAN: Alberto Possati: 44.47 kts (82.3 kph) CROATIAN: Boris Vujasinovic: 44.47 kts (82.3 kph) UKRAINIAN: Alexander Goncharov: 40.95 kts (75.8 kph)
In addition four national windsurfing records were posted in Lüderitz: the French, South African and Namibian records were respectively broken by Antoine Albeau, Mark Grinnell, Matthias Röchtter. All in all seven riders hailing from five different countries went over 50 knots. These were:
FRANCE: ANTOINE ALBEAU (52.05kts) and CEDRIC BORDES (50.23kts) SWEDEN: ANDERS BRINGDAL (51.45 kts) NETHERLANDS: JURJEN VAN DER NOORD (51.26 kts) SWITZERLAND: BJORN DUNKERBECK (51.09 kts) and PATRICK DIETHELM (50.49 kts) GREECE: NICK VARDALACHOS (50.56 kts)
These unprecedented performances were made possible not only by the incredible skill and athleticism of each contestant but also by their belief in the event and their willingness to give of their experience to improve the sailing conditions. All the windsurfers agree that this year’s results can definitely be improved, and who wouldn’t, when you consider A.Albeau went three knots faster than he did in 2008, in less wind! The riders are presently leaving Namibia with ideas for modifying their gear in order to return for more action in stronger winds in 2013.
Anders Bringdal left saying that “The Lüderitz Speed Challenge World Record Attempt is the dream of every fanatic of speed”. Everything suggests that the future editions of the Lüderitz Speed Challenge will be legendary!
In addition four national windsurfing records were posted in Lüderitz: the French (52.05 kts), South African (49.66 kts) and Namibian (47.51 kts) records were broken by Antoine Albeau, Mark Grinnell, Matthias Röchtter.
Other speeds : Martin Van Meurs (Dutch):47.95 kts Martyn Ogier (British):48.21 kts Cédric Bordes (French): 50.23 kts Christian Benzing (German): 45.57 kts Dieter Gerichhausen (German): 44.63 kts Antoine Albeau/ Cédric bordes - TANDEM: 38.12 kts
Far from finished, the next two weeks of the Lüderitz Speed Challenge 2012 will be dedicated to Kitesurfing.
Watch this space!
You can download and use photos and videos, posted on our facebook page : http://www.facebook.com/luderitzspeedchallenge?ref=hl
Or on our website: www.luderitz-speed.com Or on www.so-event.fr (Log: visiteur / password: luderitz) – High Resolution
25 NOVEMBER 2012
Windsurfing World Record Attempt: Day 11
The wind was stronger than yesterday but even if it wasn't the strongest day we had since the beginning of this World Record Attempt, we still celebrate some records!
In 35 knots of wind, Antoine reached his old record today: 51.69 knots, followed by Bjorn Dunkerbeck, the new Swiss Record Holder who managed to go over the 51 knots as well, achieving a 51.09 knots speed, joining the event only in the middle of the week.
Christian Bornemann who held the German Windsurfing record previously, beat the current Kitesurfing German Record and now holds his National Record with: 46.75 knots. Boris Vujasinovic broke his Croatian Record 3 times today ending with: 44.47 kts.
Alexander Goncharov improved his Ukrainian Record also with 40.95 knots.
So far, the forecast and the new channel gave us the opportunity to announce records every day we have raced! Riders realize that they can go faster in less wind getting used to that channel and we know that the current records can be improved.
Let's wait and see for the next and last week of this amazing Windsurfing World Record Attempt.
21 NOVEMBER 2012
Windsurfing World Record Attempt: Day 9
The day began with wind and clouds....
In 40-45 knots of wind, more records were broken and a new Windsurfing World Record set by Antoine Albeau with 52.05 knots. He became the first and only windsurfer to reach 52 knots : He had 5 runs over 51 knots !
Anders Bringdal followed with a new Swedish Record which is also Production board World Record : 51.45 knots !
Jurjen Van Der Noord the Dutch Record Holder went over 51 knots today, joining Anders Bringdal and Cédric Bordes, with 51.26 knots!
Alexander Goncharov broke the Ukrainian Record twice ending with 40.94 knots, this was achieved in moderate wind.
Boris Vujasinovic also is now the Holder of the Croatian Record with 42.27 knots.
Nick Vardalachos smoked his own Greek Record being the 6th windsurfer over 50 knots with 50.56 knots.
Mark Grinnell reached 49 knots which was his goal, with 49.66 knots, and further improved the South African Record in Windsurfing and is on the road to the 50 ! Patrick Diethelm from Switzerland did the same speed as the record he set on 17 November : 50.49 knots.
Bjorn Dunkerbeck the famous 41 times world title holder just joined the event today in the afternoon reaching 49.53 knots, he did this after only a couple of runs !
Well done to Martyn Ogier from UK who recorded a speed of 48.21 knots (current British Record held by Farrell O Shea with 48.82 knots) and to Martin Van Meurs from Netherlands: 47.95 knots who improved their best speeds.
17 NOVEMBER 2012
Windsurfing World Record Attempt: Day 6
EVEN MORE RECORDS TODAY! 5 WINDSURFERS OVER 50 KNOTS!
Today Antoine Albeau, after having smashed the 50 knots barrier several times reached 51 knots twice, ending with the best performance of the day and registering a New World Record in Windsurfing: 51.69 knots
Anders Bringdal, our Swedish representative was battling with Antoine a long time over the 50 knots. Both of them reached 51.34 knots at the same time! He improved the Swedish record as well as the World Record on production boards with 51.34 knots.
Patrick Diethelm who kept the pace these past few days also broke the 50 knots barrier, finishing with the New Swiss Record: 50.49 knots.
Jurjen Van der Noord, who opened the day, joined the 50 knots club reaching 50.41 knots
Cédric Bordes reached 50.17 knots after being close to it for the 1st part of the day. Farrell O'Shea improved his British Record today with 48.82 knots. Mark Grinnell from South Africa and Matthias Rottcher from Namibia were still fighting for the African Record in Windsurfing, improving both of their National Records in the discipline: Mark: 48.86 / Matthias: 47.34
Zara Davis from the United Kingdom, who is the actual Female World Record Holder in Windsurfing was followed by Lena Erdil from Turkey improving together: Zara: 45.83 / Lena: 45.74
Christian Bornemann who has broken the German record in Windsurfing is now getting closer to the National Multi-discipline Record (46.26 kts) with 46.18 knots followed by his countryman Dieter Gerichhausen who has also improved his speed today with 44.69 knots.
16 NOVEMBER 2012
Windsurfing World Record Attempt: Day 5
Conditions were looking good today from the beginning but the wind was dropping after all, letting riders testing their equipment before the « stormy » forecast wich is announced for the future. Mark Grinnell managed to increase his South African Record in Windsurfing with 47.79 knots as well as Jurjen Van Der Noord, the best performer of the day, who has smashed the Dutch record on the very 1st run with 48.45 knots !
Martin Van Meurs, the Dutch founder of the gps-speedsurfing.com, who has just joined the attempt, reached 47 knots today (the 2nd fastest speed in windsurfing for Netherlands).
13 NOVEMBER 2012
Windsurfing World Record Attempt: Day 4
After the promising previous days, everyone felt that the 50 knots barrier break cannot be far. Today was the 4th race day, and marks the day that mythical 50 knot barrier was smashed ! Records kept tumbling almost with every run this afternoon, and some of the speeds still need to be confirmed by the Time Keeper.
First, the Swedish Record Holder Anders Bringdal broke the 50 knots barrier twice, with 50.41 and then 50.46 knots improving the world Record on Production Board as well !
After that Antoine Albeau surpassed Anders' performance with 50.62 knots recovering his position of World Record holder in Windsurfing, which was also shortly held by Cédric Bordes in the afternoon with 49.66 knots.
Zara Davis has also improved her World Record in Windsurfing with 44.92 knots and also Lena improved her Turkish Record with 43.81.
The record on Tandem has been also broken (1 board / 2 sails / 2 riders) with 38.12 knots!
And lots of other National Records were smashed! Mark Grinnell from South Africa and Matthias Röttcher from Namibia were successively improving their national records which they had already broken earlier during the day. Mark: 46.49 kts and Matthias: 46.69 kts.
Jurjen Van Der Noord, the Dutch competitor who has just made his first runs today broke the Dutch Record with 47.53 kts. Patrick Diethelm has improved his Swiss Record and is the 3rd time in the Windsurfing world as well with 49.71 knots! Nick Vardalachos from Greece and the British Farrell O'Shea improved their record. Nick: 48.84 kts and Farrell: 48.21 kts.
Christian Benzing who was battling with his German fellow countrymen, broke the German Record in Windsurfing with 45.57 knots. This incredible day has now gone into the windsurfing history books.The world's windsurfing community was waiting for a "come back" in Speed Sailing. The goal of the 2012 "Lüderitz Speed Challenge" was to work on that point and offer the best conditions to finally break this mythical barrier. We can expect even better results during the coming days.
8 NOVEMBER 2012
Windsurfing World Record Attempt: Day 3
Even though the forecast has announced only moderate wind, riders were really motivated to hit the gusts again today! The atmosphere was unusually peaceful - this group of competitors are 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 4x4 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 herTurkish record with 42.6 kts. Cédric Bordes managed to reach the 3rd best speed of the day with 47.83 kts.
7 NOVEMBER 2012
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.
6 NOVEMBER 2012
The wind was shy at the beginning of the morning, but from 12 am it started to increase gradually to reach 30-35 knots. Zara Davis (female windsurfer from the UK) showed straight away that she meant business and that breaking records was what she was here for! She improved with each run, reaching the British Female Speed Sailing Record (38.28 knots established by a kite surfer) ending with 40.95 knots on a 500m average, which is a new world record for windsurfing on production board (female). STILL NEED TO BE RATIFIED BY THE WSSRC.
Lena Aylin Erdil followed suit and, still getting used to the speed sailing techniques, she reached 39.06 knots to establish the Turkish Female Record for the first time.STILL NEED TO BE RATIFIED BY THE WSSRC.
All the competitors were excited to take a few runs in the channel, testing their equipment and getting ready for good strong winds that are expected tomorrow.
Some of them have increased their best speed:
Christian Benzing: now 38.27 knots (was 35.26 knots) Christian Bornemann: now 39.72 knots (was 39.11 knots) Cédric Bordes also reached almost his best speed today: 45.09 knots (his best: 45.96)
We ended the day with the Swede Anders Bringdal reaching 46.33 knots.
5 NOVEMBER 2012
Today, 20 knots of wind allowed some riders to try the channel. The lack of speed allowed them to just make it through the channel for the very first time. Interviews were held with NBC TV. Tomorrow the forecast looks promising for the 1st competition day.
Zara Davis on first training day
4 NOVEMBER 2012
Le « Lüderitz Speed Challenge » 2012 est officiellement ouvert.
La cérémonie a rassemblée aujourd’hui les membres de la Mairie, les sponsors, le comité organisationnel local, les habitants de Lüderitz et les riders. Dans une ambiance détendue et conviviale les windsurfers se sont retrouvés pour le premier briefing. Au programme, ce lundi, pour le Team Windsurf : mise en place physique et mentale afin de s’imprégner du canal. Demain, avec l’arrivée d’Antoine Albeau, d’Alberto Possati et de Cédric Bordes, l’équipe sera au complet pour la première semaine de la Tentative de Record du Monde Vitesse à la voile. Plein d’Energie, le Team windsurf « drivée » par Anders BRINGDAL, porte-parole du Groupe, est prometteuse. Une atmosphère où l’ambiance palpable pourrait se résumer par : L’Union fait la force.
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 start their mental and physical preparation as they 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 is strength”…
THE LUDERITZ SPEED CHALLENGE has yielded 45 National Records and 6 World Records to date !!!
It has taken the Organisers almost 2 years to prepare for the 2012 event to ensure that the sport of speed sailing continues to progress and higher speeds are achieved. A new tried and tested canal will bring new speed sailing records for both windsurfers and kitesurfers.
History of the Event – Official Average Speeds recorded over 500m :
2007 - The very first run made officially was 44 knots, and within 4 weeks 48 knots was recorded. 2008 - A dam of sandbags was built for a flatter water surface, and 50 knots was achieved. 2009 - A channel was built inside the bay for the 1st time and higher speeds were achieved in less wind (51 knots). 2010 - A new channel was built in the bay with a better angle and the top speed hit 55.6 knots.
In 2011 a huge project was undertaken to dig a canal 300 meters away from the lagoon. The organizers held a private event, and a few select riders were invited to test the new canal. As a result of this, modifications were made which improved the speeds and safety.
The result was faster times in less wind, and the following improvements:
Competitors can race anytime of the day as the canal is no longer dependent upon tide.
Valuable time and energy is not wasted having to beat back upwind to the start, as a shuttle is provided at the end of the speed strip.
The water depth is maintained throughout the length of the run, which is a requirement of the WSSRC for official ratification.
2012: The 2012 Luderitz World Speed Sailing attempt will take place over 6 weeks:
Windsurfers from 5th of November to the 2nd of December
Kitesurfers from 3rd December to the 16th December.
Due to limited space on the shuttle vehicles that will be constantly ferrying competitors from the end of the run back to the start, the number of registrations must be limited. For further information and registrations please contact us on