Weymouth Speed Week 2018

Weymouth-Speed-Week-2018

Speed Week 2018 is coming up: it kicks off 13th October

 

The world’s oldest and longest running speed event took place last year in October on a particularly windy week that started at the tail end of Hurricane Ophelia and climaxed with the onset of Storm Brian. The conditions were pumping and, with the 2018 event coming up next week, it’s time to look back at home things shook out in 2017!

 

Words: KW / Photos: Andy Stallman and Pete Davies

 

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James Longmuir blurring past a windsurfer 

If you’ve ever tucked yourself in behind a sandbar, sheeted in and gone for broke then you know much fun speed sailing is and followers of the discipline are as committed as they come. Weymouth Speed Week draws speed freak kiters, windsurfers and dinghy sailors from across the UK and often beyond. The 2017 event had the best forecast in years!

The event takes place on a notoriously blustery 500 metre course across Weymouth Harbour and with such a promising forecast the competitors were sure to be gunning hard for the 38.48 knot course record, set by windsurfer Anders Bringdal back in 2008.

 

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Martin Carter came within half a knot of the overall record, with a run of 38.007 knots!

Last year the fastest speeds were well in excess of 2016 and, even on one of the lighter days, James Longmuir managed to clock four times the windspeed on a hyrdrofoil board. He put in some superb runs across the week, notching up a top speed of 37.592, but he couldn’t match BKSA speed champion Martin Carter (who took third this year at the Speed Sailing Worlds in Oman) who just managed to breach the 38 knot barrier with a run of 38.007 knots!

Half a knot from the record, this was the fastest time anyone’s done since Anders in 2008. James and Martin topped the overall leaderboard ahead of the windsurfers (who are called ‘sailboarders’ at this event) and dinghy sailors.

 

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Baxter Bradford gunning the surfboard!

Martin and James were riding proper speed equipment, but first time entrant, Baxter Bradford, managed 31.059 on an Axis surfboard, demonstrating just what can be achieved on non-speed specific gear! 

Of course, the overall record remains unbroken, but next year’s event is already scheduled for the same week in October, so let’s see if the kiters can wipe the windsurfers off the board once and for all in 2018!

 

Weymouth-Speed-Week-podium

 

2017 RESULTS

1: Martin Carter (Kiteboard): 38.007

2: James Longmuir (Kiteboard): 38.007

3: Patrick Van Hoof (Sailboard): 36.520

4: Jim Crossley (Sailboard): 36.299

5: Pete Young (Sailboard): 36.253

 

Conditions are looking solid from Monday onwards. Could this be a record breaking year?

 

Find out more at www.weymouthspeedweek.com

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