The Lüderitz Speed Challenge is an annual speed sailing event held in the town of Lüderitz on the southern coast of Namibia, and hosted by ESF Events since 2007.
The 1st kitesurfing Speed event was organized in Leucate, France in 2003 by Sebastien Cattelan.
In 2007 he organized the first “Luderitz Speed Challenge” – now officially recognized as the fastest speed strip in the world.
Since 2007 Cattelan has brought together all of the best International speed sailors, who share his ambition to push the boundaries of speed sailing.
In the 2008 Luderitz Speed Challenge Sébastien Cattelan was the 1st man to break the 50 knots barrier (+90km/h average over 500m) and Kitesurfing officially became the fastest craft in Speed Sailing with 50,26 knots (93 km/h average over 500m) – Two other Kiteboarders, American Rob Douglas and Frenchman Alexandre Caizergues also passed the 50 knot barrier. Within a few months the Hydroptère (hydrofoil boat) claimed the title with 51,36 knots (95 knots average over 500m).
All performances are validated by the WSSRC (World Sailing Speed Record Council) who have ratified speed sailing records since1972
Cattelan has made South Africa his base since 2002 – training in the most extreme conditions in the world, helping him to stay in the top of world rankings. In 2009 he held the titles of “GPS Record holder in Speed Sailing” with 53.06 knots (+98 km/h average over 500m).
As a pioneer in the sport, Sébastien Cattelan has contributed hugely to the development of speed kiting equipment.
2010 was the year when kitesurf became the fastest craft on water.
Sébastien Cattelan and Rob Douglas smashed the 55 knots and became respectively the European Record Holder and the World Record holder.
It's in 2011 that the famous amazing channel has been built to push the limits further improving the conditions and welcome the best sailors in windsurfing and kitesurfing on 2012.