Belgian windsurfer Vincent Valkenaers sailed at 53.25 knots (60.12 mph / 96.76 kph) over 500 meters at the 2019 Luderitz Speed Challenge, held in Namibia.
Initially it was thought that Valkenaers had set a new windsurfer record of 53,33 knots, but the official checks confirmed the speed of 53,25 knots.
Valkenaers did set a new Belgium national speed windsurfing record.
The current windsurfer world record holder is Antoine Albeau, of France with 53.27 knots set in November 2015.
While the current 500m outright sailing speed record is 65.45 kts set by Paul Larsen in 2012 with Vestas Sailrocket.
Since 2007 all the famous names in speed kiting have achieved their official records at the Luderitz Speed Challenge using the specially developed 500m run which ensures top performances.
The warm desert winds accelerate through the surrounding hills and on reaching the cold waters of the Atlantic Ocean thermal atmospheric pressure creates incredibly high wind speeds.
Statistically the wind blows on average at 35 knots+, at least 3 times a week during the period of the event, often reaching 40-45 knots and sometimes up to 50 to 65 knots of a warm and stable wind.