Well the speed world is all over the place at the moment with the news that the kiting record of 50.57 by Alexandre Caizergues and the ground breaking 50+kt run of Sebastien Cattelan DO NOT count for the official sailing speed records. In an ISAF meeting it was decided that kite powered craft could not be recognised as the holder of the World Sailing Speed record.
Now we windsurfers dont always see eye to eye with the kiters, but credit where credit is due, they broke the 50kts, and however you look at things they are powered solely by the wind.
To add further to the controversy, it seems nobody can really explain why. The ISAF say a kite is not a sail. However their definition of a sail is:
A sail is any type of surface intended to generate thrust by being placed in a wind—in essence a vertically-oriented wing.
Back in the 70\’s Jacobs ladder made numerous attempts at the record using a stack of flexifoils attached to a boat and it was considered one of the great innovations of the speed sailing world. Now 30 years later it seems kites are sails?
So now the race is still on to break the 50 kts. Antoine, Finian, Bjorn and Whitey can all strap up their speed boards again and get back out on the course. Not sure how victorious they will feel however.