Antoine Albeau (FRA, Starboard) and Patrik Diethelm (ITA, F2, North) have broken the existing speed sailing records today in Saintes Maries de la Mer, France.
Antoine Albeau smashed the 500 metre world record - Les Saintes Maries de la Mer (FRA, 13) Master of Speed 2008
After months of waiting for the big mistral winds, the speed canal at the shores of the mediterrean sea came to life again. Strong mistral winds with 45-50 knots hit the speed strip in a perfect angle, and although the conditions were quite gusty several riders set personal best speeds.
Already the first runs of the 'big three' Antoine Albeau, Patrik Diethelm and defending world record holder Finian Maynard (BVI, F2) showed, that this day would have the potential to become historic.
At 9:30 hours Patrik Diethelm was the first one making waves, setting a new world production speed record with his F2 Missile XS at 46.51 knots, subject to WSSRC ratification.
Around noon, 12:29 hours exactly, Frenchman Antoine Albeau hit a big gust and flew down the 1km man made canal. The scoreboard stopped at 49 knots, after extensive video checking with the observer from the World Speed Sailing Record Council,
T.the speed was verified at 49.09 knots, 0.4 knots faster than the old record of Finian Maynard.
The riders then pushed for the elusive 50 knots mark, the magical barrier in speedsailing around the world, but till the end of the day no one was able to increase the previous performances.