“At about the same time every year a group of international speed freaks hit the coastal town of Lüderitz to compete for the title of king or queen of speed sailing. Here, the international wind- and kite-surfing communiteis meet to battle it out in the reputable event-specific canal that officially made Lüderitz the fastest sailing spot on earth”. – Marita van Rooyen
In what has now become known as the “undisputed adrenaline water sports capital in Namibia”, the 2013 Lüderitz Speed Challenge saw a number of records broken and left many hungering for more.
The Speed challenge, which started on 7th of October and ended on 17 November, saw 36 records broken by speed freaks representing 11 nationalities.
According to the organisers, the Speed Challenge is a unique event where a community of dedicated sailors get together in the Namib Desert to push their physical and mental limits beyond their personal bests. Several international and national records were broken by the adrenaline junkies.
Since it’s launch in 2007, the Speed challenge has been the place where 64 national and 11 World Records have been broken.
The aim of the Speed challenge overall is to develop the sport through performances never before reached by skilled sailers; sharing together a great passion for the sport. And, by having become a hug for the best of the best in the world of speed sailing, the event has brought unprecedented focus on the small town of Lüderitz, and has helped to put it on the speed sailing map.
“The only place now where you can see the Legends of Windsurfing such as Bjorn Dunderbeck, Antoine Albeau and Anders Bringdal, together defying the elements and competing to be the fastest in the world, is in Lüderitz Namibia” – the event organisers said.
21 World champion and current World Record holder in Windsurfing, Antoine Albeau, who was leading the race with 50.07 knots in light conditions was surpassed by the Swedish windsurfer Anders Bringdal, World Record Holder on a production board who reached 50.43 knots.
Zara Davis (UK) World Record holder in Windsurfing, once again performed very well by reaching the best speed in Windsurfing, once again performed very well by reaching the best speed in Windsurfing female ranking with 43.77 knots.
French Kitesurfer, organiser and double World Record hold, Sebastian Cattelan, reached the best overall performance this year with 55.36 knots. He was very close to breaking the World Record again this year.
Sophie Routaboul, another organiser of the event, achieved the best performance in Kitesurfing (Women) with an impressive 45.44 knots.
At the 2012 event, Dutch Jurjen van der Noord was the revelation and at this year’s event, Hans Kreisel, also from the Netherlands, impressed everyone with his performances. He was also one of the youngest sailors.