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Technique

Speed is of the Essence

Top tips for going fast in perfect ‘Namibia like’ conditions

I was there when Antoine did his first world record in the channel from Stes Maries… he crashed 5 times destroying everything

No conditions are perfect! I have not been to Namibia but heard all about it. Hard to start in hardly no wind, nearly need to head upwind into that channel, bear off like hell while accelerating maximum at the beginning of the run, no wind in the middle of the run and a strong gust by the end of the channel when all you really want is stopping before hitting the end of it. I have the feeling a lot of sailors think at the moment Namibia is easy and perfect so everybody can go fast there. But reality is those riders present were all really good sailors and they simply did a great job in that ditch.

So what does it need to go fast in Namibia? Loads of preparation – equipment, body and especially mind! The equipment would be endless to talk through – it mainly has to fit to the person using it, the conditions in Namibia and naturally be affordable as well. Somebody like Patrik is not going fast because he is tall or heavy or the best sailor in the world – but because he is definitely thinking the most and able to transfer this into custom boards, booms, sails, fins,…

Then you have to be fit to go there – heavy is good and fast but you also need the skills to use your body weight and make the most out of it without getting hurt and then last but not least it’s really a mind game. I was there when Antoine did his first world record in the channel from Stes Maries. He was so determined that this would be it – he crashed 5 times destroying everything but would always go back and do another run. That’s tough. Even without being there in Namibia last year I think Zara had the same attitude. That’s why she succeeded.

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