Friday, January 21, 2005

Record Speed Set, 53.88 MPH

(Windsurfing, Feb/March 2005, Volume 24 Issue 1 :49)

He is wearing a weight jacket to add weight. Windsurfers may notice the skinny board and a missing half to his boom. But there are those who set speed records with more normal equipment. The weight jacket is for speed and to prevent being blown off the water. The records are set at the French Trench in 50kt plus winds. It is a canal and they try to sail up close to one side of it for the smooth water there. On whatever side the wind blows to on a body of water there start to be waves or whitecaps. It sounds like a challenge. If you are blown up out of the water then it is trouble. You can get sling-shot when hooked in.

Beaufort Wind Scale
Windspeed in MPH
Description - Visible Condition
Calm smoke rises vertically
1 - 4
Light air direction of wind shown by smoke but not by wind vanes
4 - 7
Light breeze wind felt on face; leaves rustle; ordinary wind vane moved by wind
8 - 12
Gentle breeze leaves and small twigs in constant motion; wind extends light flag
13 - 18
Moderate breeze raises dust and loose paper; small branches are moved
19 - 24
Fresh breeze small trees in leaf begin to sway; crested wavelets form on inland water
25 - 31
Strong breeze large branches in motion; telephone wires whistle; umbrellas used with difficulty
32 - 38
Moderate gale whole trees in motion; inconvenience in walking against wind
39 - 46
Fresh gale breaks twigs off trees; generally impedes progress
47 - 54
Strong gale slight structural damage occurs; chimney pots and slates removed
55 - 63
Whole gale trees uprooted; considerable structural damage occurs
64 - 72
Storm very rarely experienced; accompanied by widespread damage
Hurricane devastation occurs


Collin - Band Member said...

Wow, That looks like a lot of fun. I have done a lot of extreme things, but I have never windsurfed. I have a question about his weight jacket. Is it also a floatation (one that would cancel out the effects of the added weight)?

mynym said...

Yeah, I didn't think about that. He'd sink! Although, there are always people watching there. That is all highly specialized gear in the picture, etc. Most windsurfers don't wear a weight jacket. It's just the physics of it. You have to have the weight to go fast and not skip on up out of the water. (The fin is key there. Shorter for faster, longer for more traction or "pointing," it's a compromise.)

Skinny guys can still go pretty fast and at least jump higher too.

I've been out when the wind meter said gusts of 50, on a much smaller sail. I didn't have the courage to try jumping too much. Maybe next time...those days don't come often.

I think I'll post one or two normal windsurfing pictures. Speed is not what the sport is all about, in my opinion.

mynym said...

Blogger wouldn't let me update the post. The point of the post was that he broke the speed record, for all sailing.

There are some pretty interesting speed sailboats. But so far, windsurfing is the fastest.

Collin - Band Member said...