Ozone’s Jamie Overbeek landed a new WOO world record with an astonishing jump of 35.3m at his home spot of Workum in the Netherlands, adding another accolade to his growing list of honours.
Overbeek, who just turned 17 and recently claimed the youngest-ever podium place with a second at the 2022 Red Bull King of the Air in Cape Town, made the highest recorded jump in gusty, 40 knots winds.
“I had my Garmin watch on my wrist, so I saw the readout about five seconds after I landed,” said Overbeek. “I was super-stoked when I saw 35.3m. It was so amazing that I’d got the world record. I immediately came to the beach and the other guys were cheering and shouting.”
Overbeek already has a long roster of WOO titles to his name. He won the WOO Worlds 2022 competition, with highest leap of 33.1m during the month-long window. Overbeek also had the WOO European record in the bag with a jump of 34.1m earlier in 2022.
Friday 13, January, 2023, may suggest bad omens for some, but it proved lucky for Overbeek. The young Dutchman set out to break the WOO world record and chose an Ozone 9m
2 R1 V4 foil kite for the job.
Overbeek had achieved his previous WOO records on 7m
2 and 8m 2 Ozone Edge V11 kites. But in the 40 knots winds he realised he could get even more height with the 9m 2 Ozone R1 V4.
“This is not a kite for everybody,” said Overbeek. “When launching in these conditions you’ve to do it carefully. I had three guys to help: one holding the kite tip, one the bridles and one holding on to me. But you’ve a lot of control if you know how to jump with it. And it goes even higher than the Edge.”
But even though the wind was strong enough the water was extremely choppy, hampering Overbeek’s early efforts to get the record. Even his favoured 132cms Ozone Code V3, that he loves for its ability to cut through the chop and maintain speed, was failing to help him get the necessary height.
He was struggling to get over 30m, with many jumps in the 27m or 28m range.
“I was fighting for the world record for more than an hour,” said Overbeek. “It was hard because the wind was so gusty. It was pretty hard to hit a kicker because the water was so choppy.”
But in the overcast and chilly conditions of the North Sea in mid-winter, Overbeek finally struck lucky and found the boost he was looking for to take him skyward.
“I finally found the perfect gust and I knew I’d jumped well over 30m,” said Overbeek. “When I was in the air I caught another gust and got a second boost. That’s something you always get with the Ozone R1 V4. As I reached to top I also inverted to get the maximum height [of the board and WOO sensor].”
Overbeek had a massive hangtime of 12.7 seconds, another characteristic of the Ozone R1 V4 foil kite. But only the height of a landed jump counts towards the world record.
“I did one really, really slow ‘heli-loop’ so the that the jump would be registered by WOO and so that I didn’t crash on the beach. When I’ve had more than 14 seconds hangtime before, the WOO didn’t register the jump. So I had to be careful of that. I’m just really amped to get the world record.”
Watch the video here:
words: Ian MacKinnon/Ozone