Breaking 40 knots

The myth: I need to look like Bjorn (Dunkerbeck) or Antoine (Albeau) i.e. be around 100 kg to break 40 knots.

False! Zara Davis holder of two world speed records explains why this is not true:

Being big and heavy is not as much of an advantage nowadays as it used to be. Being 6 foot tall and weighing only 78 kilograms I am not what you would call heavy and my world record is 45.83 knots over 500m.

So how can you achieve your personal best in speedsailing if you are on the lighter side?

I use Simmer and Mistral boards and sails that are standard production, the only custom thing I use are custom asymmetric fins. The limiting factor is not necessarily the equipment but setting it up right for you personally is…

Key points to look at:

Zara Davis
Zara Davis in action

Are you using the right mast? The wrong or too stiff a mast is like putting a Morris Minor engine in a Ferrari. For example trying a softer top section for a lighter rider is sometimes is all it takes.

Fins are crucial to top speeds, if you can have a small quiver of quality fins. Plus if the conditions allow, use asymmetric fins. Not fast upwind but huge advantage down.

Footstrap positions, when was the last time you moved you strap positions? The wrong position for you on the board will slow it down and not allow it to fly as it was designed to do.

A small weight jacket with buoyancy and a few kilos in it help enormously with holding a bigger sail down. But more importantly helping you plane through the lulls.

I hope this helps you achieve your personal best.

Please feel free to contact me if you need help with specifics.

See you on the water Zara.

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