Van der Noord roars into elite 50-kn. club
LUEDERITZ, Namibia _ Dutchman Jurgen Van der Noord joined a select group of 5 windsurfers who exceeded 50 knots/hr. over 500 meters at the 2012 world speed championships. On Nov. 10, he clocked 50.41 knots, or 93,5 km/hr. He was preceded only by Frenchman Antoine Albeau (51.69 kn.), Sweden’s Anders Bringdal (51.34 kn) and Patrick Diethelm of Switzerland (50.49 kn.)
The month-long event, organized by ISAF’s World Sailing Speed Record Council, attracted 33 men and 4 women to the Namibian coastal town which is not Van der Noord’s favorite site.
“That is, without any doubt, the Wadden Sea,” (below) the shallow waters off the northern Dutch coast. “At low tide, parts of it fall dry. A few canals remain creating some of the world’s best speed strips. The scenery is also very special,” says Van der Noord. His “typical day” starts with a weather check to find the best winds.
“After that it’s time to rearrange my agenda and move some appointments to less windy days. I also check where the other ‘speedies’ plan to go. Within 1 hour we are at the best windsurfing spots in the Netherlands. Mostly on the Wadden Sea. Depending on the tide, a surfing session may last up to 4 hours. I train mainly on speed. It’s all about transferring that one gust into speed and keeping it as long as possible. I’lll try different settings and compare the result with my GPS. I also try to switch material with the other speedies. This all helps me learn a lot. I also spend up to 8 hours a week in the gym.”