The WSSRC has today ratified the last and final record from Luderitz, handing over the crown of Speedsailing to US Rob Douglas.
Earlier in the week, the World Speed Sailing Record Council already ratified the achievements of Charlotte Consorti (FRA, 50.43 knots - first woman ever over 50 knots) and Sebastien Cattelan (FRA, 55.49 knots).
It has been a thrilling month in the Namibian desert, with many national records and finally world records broken. It was first up to the defending kite world record holder Alexandre Caizergues (FRA) to claim back the outright record from the multi-million-dollar hydofoiling trimaran "Hydroptere", before Cattelan rised the bar to become the first sailor again exceeding 55 knots (he was the first one over 50 knots already in 2008).
Unfortunately "Catmans" glory lasted only 14 minutes until Rob Douglas flew down the course, setting the new outright world record to an incredible 55.65 knots.
Congratulations to all record contenders and new record holders of world and national records.
Record: World Sailing Speed Record
Venue: Luderitz. Namibia
Name: Rob Douglas USA
Equipment: Kitesurf. Mike Zajicek custom. Kite Cabrinha Switchblade 9 sqm
Dates: 28th October 2010.
Course length: 501M
Start time: 14; 10; 25.12
Finish time: 14; 10; 42.62
Elapsed time: 17.50 seconds
Speed: 55.65 knots
Corrected for current: N/A
Comments: Current record: Sebastien Cattalan FRA 55.49 kts, 28th October - 14 minutes earlier.
Secretary to the WSSR Council
Here is some thoughts of Rob Douglas' team "NASSP" after being informed about the record:
"Call it amazing…call it ballsy…call it, “The Duel In the Desert Trench.” Drama personified in Ludertiz yesterday resulted in success for Team NASSP. Mission Accompished. Rob Douglas (USA 55 / Blue Leader) has accomplished exactly what he set out to do…he proudly and courageosly recaptured the Outright World Speed Sailing Record yesterday in the Ludertiz, 2nd Lagoon Trench.
With winds in excess of 45 knots and sand storms and sea spray all around, Rob entered The Trench. Riding his 9m Switchblade and speed board of choice, wearing his helmet and all additional padding and protection, Rob sailed down the Ludertiz Trench into a very questionable finishing area (completely closed and close to rocks and sand banks). He has once again sailed into the annals of sailing history…World Record Speed of 55.65 knots !
On Rob’s second run he got fouled up during the finish and fractured his right wrist. The NASSP Team has decided to have Rob return prematurely to Boston, MA. to undergo necessary medical procedures. On his return flight Rob will be accompanied by NASSP founding sponsor Bill Lynch (USA 52 / Green Leader).
Meanwhile, Jamie and Morgan will keep the kites in the sky as the high wind continues to pound the 2nd Lagoon. Coach Gebhardt will remain with The Boys."
A video report of Robs Record run including interviews can be found here:
Footage of Charlottes Record run can be found here: