There is no event quite like the Defi Wind, a festival of Kite, Wing, and Windsurf.
The Defi Wind event or Le Defi, is held each year at Gruissan Plage, Narbonne, France and has run for 20 years, initially for windsurfers as Defi Wind, then kiteboarders, and this has been also the first year for the Defi Wing, wing foiling discipline as a separate event.
A Le Mans style start, before a 10kn dash and back, is what makes Le Defi unique and it’s draw for large numbers of sailors and foilers. Relying on the region’s Tramontane wind gusts during particularly blowy years can be savage. Combined with so many other riders on the race course this makes Le Defi a challenge, but a doable one none the less, for any competent wind athlete with a foil or a fin.
On top of the actual sailing there’s a carnival and the festival creating awesome vibe on the beach with exhibitions, pro rider talks and coaching sessions, plus parties, which makes it one to attend.
Gruissan delivered the near-perfect wind conditions usual the iconic Defi Wind.
An unprecedented challenge, an intense sporting performance event, because it is organized over such a long distance in competition, that is, 40Km. If the defiers compete in all the rounds, they will have covered 320 km during the competitions, a wingfoil, kitefoil, and windfoil madness.
The Défi organizers explain that “Wingfoiling is the new watersport currently in vogue. This new practice was launched 3 years ago. It is a combination of windsurfing, kitesurfing and foiling. Today, the sport is booming and conquering a large public in search of new thrills. So after the Défi Wind, the Défi Kite and to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the event, it seemed logical to see this new sport join the “Défi” family.
No other event in the world brings together so many wind athletes on the same starting line, in a unique format with both fin and foil boarders racing along each other, long distance, mixing professionals and international amateurs from 13 to 77 years old.
The Défi Wind, which celebrates its 20th edition this year wants to be the \”Woodstock\” of water sports where kite, wing, and windsurfing athletes come to rock.
Its founder, Philippe Bru, wanted to \”celebrate the culture of windsurfing in all its splendour and pass it on to people who thought sliders were sand players or guys smoking firecrackers\”.