Weymouth Speed Week underway
Dakine Weymouth Speed Week is underway at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy. The official British Championships will ensure that all possible is done to allow Harbour records to be broken, by kitesurfers and windsurfers with the sole boats being Thomas Jundt's three man foiler, the Mirabaud LX and Katherine Knight's foiling Moth. The event is centred on an accurately measured 500 metre course located in Portland Harbour. This provides the challenge for the speed sailor to pit his wits against the elements.
Competitors help develop the growing sport of speed sailing which recently saw the outright world record elevated by 54.10 knots. Among those signed up to push those boundaries this year are the legendary Bjorn Dunkerbeck and Zara Davis the current women’s No. 1.
The course at Weymouth is suited to all competitors from boats to the kiters, so if the wind blows, and they are due a good year, the harbour record set by Anders Bringdal in 2008 could fall.
The lack of rules provides the ideal opportunity for both experts and dreamers to build the type of boats which, but for Dakine Weymouth Speed Week, would never see the light of day.
The 2010 Dakine Weymouth Speed Week continues to expand upon previous years’ innovations. The event has proved its credibility each year, and steps are being taken this year to further increase the measurement accuracy. The new timing system runs solely using Navi GT31 GPS devices and software designed by Manfred Fuchs from Germany.
John Tweed, Chief Executive at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, commented: "Weymouth Speed Week is a unique event. In recent years we have witnessed World Champions and Record holding professionals sailing on the same course as novices and juniors. With so many great competitors from all over the world we’re looking forward to, hopefully, a new harbour record being set."
So far conditions haven't provided optimum conditions, the fastest time being record by sailboarder Ant Baker at 26.9 knots, while the Mirabeau LX has recorded 20.89 knots, only a fraction of a knot faster than Katherine Knight's Moth. Conditions are looking a little more fruity tomorrow and Wednesday when winds gusting up to 25 knots are forecast.