Luderitz Speed Challenge 2014: Chris Ballois’ world record and Seb Cattelan’s 54 knots

Posted on November 26th, 2014 by Ozone Kitesurf

The 2014 edition of the Luderitz Speed Challenge was a hugely successful event, the competitors had a blast thanks to the organisation team around Ozone global team rider Sebastien Cattelan who also won the kite speed competition.
Red Bull rider Chris Ballois (see http://www.redbull.com/en/adventure/stories/1331691988133/7-differently-abled-adventurers) set a new world record in speed kiting in the handicapped category! He was on a custom colored Edge, we’re absolutely stoked for his big archievment!
“I am just back from Namibia with a 42,94 knots performance.  This is the world record in the handicapped category. The wind was 25knots and I used a custom green Ozone EDGE 10m.  2 days afterwards I had a crash and injured my shoulder quite badly so I had to go back to France.  See you next year!
Chris Ballois”
Watch the video of his run here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V_kMewQdPaQ

“The 2014 edition has been intense on the organizational side. This world record attempt has been our main goal for 8 years now. It helps growing the kitesurfing and windsurfing industry pushing the limits further but it’s also a big human adventure. The location is quite unique but can create some difficulties regarding infrastructure and conditions, especially because we want to improve each year.
Since the beginning we are convinced that the key of this event is that the organizers are pro riders and can develop and create the maximum of possibilities each year. It feels sometimes difficult to be 100% riding when organizing is still the biggest part every day.
I found the Edge very interesting for speed kiting because it creates its own wind. When the wind drops, just shake the bar to make the kite more nervous and it pulls through until the next gust without slowing down. This is really important in speed. My favorite kite is the 7m, even underpowered it accelerates a lot.
I used the kite with the back lines in the middle setting; otherwise the ears move a bit and give too much power from the shaking. With the back lines a bit forward, the bar pressure is bigger and the kite is stable in that strong wind. I used the Edge 7m in 45kts and I was underpowered!
The Chrono felt even better but I was struggling with the bridles in that strong wind and didn’t want to play with that amount of power in a narrow canal… But I’m convinced that the Chrono is faster because it cut the air like a knife and it’s smoother. I just need to adapt to that different concept.
I did 54.2 knots over the 500m run in 45 knots of wind finishing first in front of Sylvain Hoceini – the 2014 French Champion – who did 51.5 knots. I beat him every day even in light conditions, which is new for me: Sylvain is the killing machine in light wind.
Next up I need to work a little bit on the canal to make the water flatter in order to get even faster.  I’ll do a few speed crossings in Cape Town to push the legs, and 30km to reach Robben Island on the 16th of December.
Thanks again to the whole Ozone crew to develop the ultimate design.

$eb”

We wish you guys even better conditions next year, good luck for the world record hunt!

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