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Prince Baldini interviews Vincent Valkenaers, the first windsurfer of the millennium on the Guinnes Record Book with the world record on the Mile at the Prince of Speed in La Palme organized by the Prince.
Vincent Valkenaers: My First Knight
World Record on Mile, Record Open Ocean, 53.25KTs on 500 m.
It is incredible the escalation of this young Belgian talent. 2016: wins the Mondial du Vent Windsurfing section. 2018: World record on the Mile at Prince of Speed. La Palme: 42.33kts and Belgian record at Luderitz over 500m: 51.77kts. 2019: Open Ocean Windsurfing Record at Prince of Speed with 46.93kts over 500m and almost world record at the Luderitz Canal with 53.25kts over 500m (the world record is still Albeau's that in the 2015 did 53.27kts).
Pb: Some great Champion trusted me that in his opinion it was not possible to make the Open Ocean record at Rouet in a fixed course with the buoys … He was the first to make the record with over 45kts (Jacques Van der Hout). You thought it was an achievable goal offshore?
Vv: At first I did not believe that it was possible to go so strong in the open sea ... but at some point on a perfect day at Rouet it happened … I was thrilled! Crazy stuff!
Pb: Over the past 3 years still go into slingshot certainly ... but I've seen you do the edges so many times in a straight line. This from the 2016 helped you improve your ability to conquer records?
Vv: You, I think gps speedsurfing helped me learn to accelerate to have a better top speed and straight line runs even in the mile taught me to maintain high speed even at a more cross angle.
Pb: Before going to Ludertz 2019 what were your goal, your dream and your goal of minimum? What do you think your limit is?
Vv: Before I went I really thought I'd break the 500m record ... but it was still in the state of dreams ... my minimum goal was 52.5kts and I have largely surpassed it and I am so glad to have even reached the Record on 500m ... now I know it's within my reach. I think we can get to 54kts out of 500m!
Pb: How did you feel while waiting for your official time and after ... whereas your GPS was saying world records on the 500m?
Vv: Before I was super excited and i couldn't wait to see the official result ... Then I was a bit sick but only in the beginning ... After a few moments I was again euphoric and very happy ... I had made an incredible result and the highest top speed ever recorded in gps ... This give me hope and motivation to try again ... because now I know I can do it!
Pb: What speed do you think you can achieve in the Channel and what's missing for that purpose?
Vv: I think as the channel was this year I made the fastest run you could do. This year the initial part of the Channel was not sufficiently done well. It was necessary to completely close the sides of the Canal with more sandbags at least 5-10 cm taller ... and then you could change the angle a few degrees.
Pb: What are your measurements?
Vv: 197cm x 108kg
Pb: How you train physically and mentally?
Vv: I try to navigate as much as possible in strong wind conditions (laws over 50kts), play volleyball, good thing is also mountain biking and sometimes I go to the gym. I also do hard physical work that helps keep me in shape.
Pb: And what work do you do?
Vv: I work on my own as a carpenter.
Pb: How did you feel in October 2019 to be seen on the Guinness World Record Book 2020 for Your World Record Made at Prince of Speed in La Palme? Not many Windsurfers have had this Great Honor in their entire Record Man career... not even Antoine.
Vv: I was super happy ... it was always my dream as a child ... it's a dream come true ... now I'm so glad for that!
Pb: What was your equipment for your World Mile record at Prince of Speed 2018 and for the Open Ocean Record 500m in THE POS 2019?
Vv: JP 45 Serial, Neil Pryde Sail 5.6 EVO X! Standard, TPX NP rdm tree, Pinna Zfins 21 Asy.
Pb: Considering you did your best run at the Channel and The Rouet (POS beach- La Palme) with the same sail, let us know if you used different trees or other?
Vv: Exactly the same combination of shaft sail ... But in the Channel we trim with much more downhaul (Downhaul).
Pb: In the final part of the Prince of Speed Video I was singing a song from the '60s ... and you clearly felt a very very high pitch of yours ... That's why you changed from trapeze to panty to trapeze wave ?
Vv: I like the wave trapeze because I have the freest legs ... and because I'm so tall that for me it works perfectly.
Pb: Hey my First Knight ... from President of the WST (World Speed Tour), you're a part of, sono davvero orgoglioso di te e come tuo vecchio amico sono contentissimo per te … Ci vediamo alla Prince of Speed 2020, 25 May- 25 June 2020 … Con nuovi Records … Nuovi Sogni… Forever Speed Vince!
Vv: Grazie infinite per tutto il supporto che mi dai e per come spingi lo sport … lo apprezziamo tutti! Certain! Ci vediamo Presto!
Principe Baldini interviews Vincent Valkenaers after that the Belgian speeder almost broke the world speed record at the last edition of the Luderitz Speed Challenge.
Vincent Valkenaers the 1st Knight
World Record Nautical Mile; Open Ocean Record and 53.25kts on 500m
It’s incredible the escalation of this young Belgium Talent.
2016: he wins the Mondial du Vent
2018: World Record Nautical Mile at Prince of Speed with 42.33kts and National record a Luderitz on 500m with 51.77kts
2019: Open Ocean Record on 500m at Prince of Speed with 46.93kts; almost World Record 500m with 53.25 at Luderitz (the World Record of Antoine Albeau is 53.27kts).
Pb: Some great riders told me that had some difficulties to believe that was possible to get the Open Ocean Record at Rouet in a fixed course … the guy was the 1st who broke the record … and then you with almost 47kts! Did you think was possible this score in Open Ocean?
Vv: At first I didn’t believe it was possible to go that fast on an open ocean course but some how on a perfect day at Le Rouet it happened and I was so stoked. Super crazy.
Pb: In the last 3 years you still slingshot but I’ve seen you going straight line many run … Was this thing helping you from 2016 to increase your skill in order to get all your records?
Vv: Yes I think gps speedsurfing made me this fast doing slingshots to get a better top speed and trying straight lines and miles to get the speed half wind as high as possible.
Pb: Before to go to Luderitz 2019 which were your goal, your dream and your minimum target? And what did you really think could be your limit?
Vv: Before to go I was thinking to brake the record but it was still a dream, minimum target was 52.5knots but I did better so I’m super happy to come so close to the world record, now we know that its possible. I think we can do over 54 knots on 500 m.
Pb: Which equipment were you using: Mast, Sail, Board, Fin, production, custom etc etc …
Vv: I used the JP custom 40 shaped by Werner Gnigler. Neilpryde 5.2 evoXI production sail, Zfins asy 19 and the Neilpryde TPX rdm mast.
Pb: How was your feeling when you were waiting the score with the 500m World Record in your gps … and after?
Vv: Before I was super excited to see what it was on the video timing. After a bit disappointed in the beginning but after a few moments I was still super happy, it was still great what speed I did, also doing the fastest top speed gave me hope and pushed me to come back and trying to beat it know. I know it’s really possible.
Pb: How fast do you think it is possible to go in the Channel … and what do you miss to make it?
Vv: I think I did the fastest run for how the channel was. this year 2019 the start of the canal was not good enough.
We have to close the complete side of the canal with a line of sand bags sticking out 5 till 10 cm above the water that it will be more flat. Also the angle should be ganged a little bit.
Pb: How much are you tall and what’s your weight?
Vv: 197cm tall and 108 kg.
Pb: In which way do you train … work out … mental train … etc?
Vv: I try to sail a lot in strong winds, I also play volleyball what is also not bad, trying to mountain bike a lot and sometimes to the gym. I have also a pretty heavy job so that’s keep me fit to.
Pb: Which job do you run?
Vv: I work for my own as a carpenter.
Pb: How did you feel in October 2019 when you saw your photo on the Guinnes World Records book for the Nautical Mile record at Prince of Speed at La Palme? You know, not many Windsurfers had this Honour in all their Records life (not even Antoine) …
Vv: Super happy, it was always a child dream that came true, now super happy about it.
Pb: Considering that you did you best time in the Channel and at Rouet with the same sail, let us know if you had different mast combo or/and different way to rig?
Vv: Same combo but in the canal you need much more downhaul.
Pb: In the end of the POS video I was singing a song … and we can clearly ear you voice pretty high … Is it because of this that you change from low to high harness
Vv: I like the waist harness more because then your legs are more free and because I’m so tall it works for me.
Pb: Hey My Knight, being the President of WST (World Speed Tour) where you are member I’m super proud of you … and as your Old (for age) friend I’m ultra happy for you …
See you at Prince of Speed 2020 25 May – 25 June 2020 … With some new Records … And some new dreams … Forever Speed Vince!
Vv: Thank you very much for all the support and pushing me and the sport, we really appreciate it.
See you soon
interview: Andrea Baldini 4 www.RIWmag.com
Photo: Courtesy Andrea Baldini , POS,
All pictures from Luderitz Speed Challenge by STEFAN CSÁKY | PHOTOGRAPHY | VIDEOGRAPHY | www.csaky.at
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