Kitesurfers are the Worldâ€™s Fastest Sailors and the only 3 sailors to go over 50 knots average speed on a 500 meter course.
1. Alex Caizegues- F-21, 50.57 knots -Luderitz, Namibia's Second lagoon
2. Rob Douglas - US-55, 50.54 knots -Luderitz, Namibia's Second lagoon
3. Sebastian Cattelain - F-69 50.52 knots - Luderitz, Namibia's Second lagoon
ISAF has decided to nullify the kiteboarderâ€™s records and not allow kitesurfing to hold the outright speed record.
ISAF is just playing politics and needs to be pressured to show they have set too much precedence to even think of continuing to not honor the work the kiteboarding speed fraternity has done in recent months.
There are only 3 sailors who have gone over 50 knots on a 500 meter course and they belong to an elite club.
All three of our kiteboarding brothers did it according to the rules stipulated by ISAF and WSSRC which is the council mandated to control speed records under ISAF's umbrella. The kiteboarder's all paid their fees, had a WSSRC commissioner on site to ratify the times, followed all the rules laid out by WSSRC relative to water depth and then clearly and consistently broke the world records. What is there to argue at this point?
I especially like the part where Sjoujke Bredenkamp has held the "Outright World Sailing Speed Record" for women for over a year under ISAF"s approval as the fastest female sailor on the planet and now it is overturned? Well she is pretty hot looking! So I can understand getting a free hall pass form ISAF for the last year, but it is clear that they are playing petty politics at this point in time.
Is it time for a class action suit from speed kiteboarders?
There are two sailing factions that have been fighting it out head to head with kitesurfers to break the magical 50 knot barrier and to break the outright sailing speed record (and lost I might add) one of them has lost with honor, but what about the other?
1. SAIL ROCKET- Vestas Sail Rocket, an insect-looking, air-foil-driven â€œsailingâ€ craft, has been inching its way towards the 50-knot goal in northern Namibia. Paul Larsen, the boatâ€™s pilot, said wednesday that he believed the kiters deserved the current title. â€œAll my life I have dreamed of being No. 1, the fastest in my chosen field,â€ Larsen said in an e-mail message from Namibia. â€œThere is no way I would take it on a technicality. It has to be undisputed. It has to be outright.â€
Sail rocket has stepped up and admitted that the kiters are the fastest, but what about Hydroptere. They could show their honor as well by admitting that the race to 50 knots is over and won by the kiteboard fraternity.
2. HYDROPTERE- IS it time for Hydroptere to show some respect and own up to the fact that they have lost the race to 50 knots as well? Or is it back room ISAF politics as usual?
Regards Michael Gebhardt- Rob Douglas's coach and www.nassp.net
REBUTTAL FROM ROB DOUGLAS
ISAF recognizes Kite Sailing (which is what we do.) They sanction a new organization (IKA) and state that we could become an Olympic class.....
Then they do not recognize Kite Sailing as a craft allowed to hold the Outright Speed Sailing record.
1. Kite Sailing has been around for 1000's of years. The Chinese used kites to power their small fishing boats.
2. 1972 Jacob's Ladder uses 7 Kites (stacked) and Ian Day break's the World Record and holds it for 6 years.
3. Sjoukje Bredenkamp holds the current Women's Outright Record for over a year already, now all of a sudden she doesn't?
4. The WSSRC has for over 6 years taken fees from 100's of kite sailors with the opportunity to break the outright speed sailing record. Kite Sailors have used the WSSRC rules and adhered to them and by doing so, earned the RIGHT to call themselves the owner of the Outright Record.
What is the WSSRC?
was established by the International Yacht Racing Union (now renamed the International Sailing Federation) in 1972. The object was to provide impartial results for increasing numbers of claims to high speed sailing craft (on water: never on ice nor land!). Early on the decision was made to base such speed ratifications on a one-way leg of exactly 500 metres. Meetings were held every year, often several meetings a year, in various suitable places in the world and speeds climbed with boats of various configurations and with sailboards.
SO we can clearly see that this is about SAILING and nothing to do with craft. Define SAILING and I believe that this is the only way to define what we do.
What is FAIR?
Is it fair that Hydroptere is allowed to sail anywhere on water using hydrofoils using a GPS device to calculate speed and or records? Yet, Kite sailors and Sailboarders HAVE to use 2 fixed points and video timing.
IS it fair that Big Boat syndicates pressurize the WSSRC into a depth rule citing a "Ground Effect" law which is not challenged properly and put in place days before an officially sanctioned and paid up event (WSSRC - PKRA Speed Event, Fuerte Ventura, Africa.) A rushed meeting then agrees that 50cm is the right depth to be changed to 10cm or average Beam of craft, which moves it out to 15cm. However, the WSSRC has been challenged to provide the beam width of Hydroptere including it's foils and how they have validated the water depth during and after it's so called record runs (still silence and no answer. )
What is further worrying is the email I received from the WSSRC Secretary, John Read, it states that the big boat syndicates arguments (I think he meant cash) are stronger than ours and that sailing in shallow water and man made canals is to be done away with..... So the French Trench should be worried as well.
(So will ISAF now not validate the windsurfers records because they sailed in a man made trench)
This is about stupid dirty politics of large boat syndicates trying to buy their way into the record books.
Alex Caizergues IS the fastest sailor/kitesurfer and anybody who is not of this opinion should look at themselves and wonder why? He sails, he conformed with the conditions set out by a WSSRC commissioner and paid his fees. This is all that should be done. You cannot in retro take something away from somebody and then sit back and drink your G&T's. Lawsuits are there for a reason and what has been done so far would not be hard to get some good cash in the back pocket.
The WSSRC is totally out of touch and to allow other craft MASSIVE advantages whilst trying to make out that kiters gain an advantage in shallow water is not "FAIR" or indeed acceptable. If they want to stand out as the Authority for Speed Sailing, they should make all craft ride under the same conditions.
1. Between 2 fixed points
2. With Video Timing
3. With Ground Effect or without.
If all adhered to the above, we all know who is the fastest, and that is I guess the problem for people with large sums of money invested. However, this should not be the problem of $1500 syndicates known as kiters.
Rob Douglas is kitesurfings new rookie speed champ, currently the USA's fastest sailor and second fastest sailor on the planet. www.nassp.net