Namibian inflatables return to international waters

Quinton Liebenberg and Keren Robin Till competing for Namibia at the World Cup for Inflatable Racing. Photo: Jeff Latham Photography

After a 14-year hiatus, Namibia made a welcome return to the World Cup for Inflatable Racing, putting on respectable performances at the recent edition in Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

The world cup consisted of three disciplines known as the Flat Water Circuit, Dam Discipline and Surf Circuit, and the Namibians who participated as the Lighthouse Group – Quinton Liebenberg and Keren Robin Till – showed their mettle by coming 11th overall out of 34 competing international teams.

“If it wasn’t for the bad luck during the Flat Water Circuit, they would definitely have finished among the first eight teams. During the Dam Discipline, they picked up machine problems twice and also had an accident which resulted in no points in the discipline,” said water sport enthusiast and organiser Leon Smith.

In the discipline Surf Circuit, the duo got a second place out of the four events, as well as two fourth places and one fifth place in the outings of up to nine boats.

“In one of the outings in the discipline, they led until the penultimate lap but only fell back to fourth place due to a bad set of waves,” Smith narrates.

“During the long haul, the lack of experience came out with the wrong propeller choice for the conditions, as well as setting up the boat. They still drove competitively to finish among the first 15,” he says.

“In short, the Namibians are back to riding competitively, as well as with big plans for the sport’s future.”

“Major sponsors are already busy with a unique plan to promote the sport on an international level, as well as to investigate the possibility of hosting the world cup in Namibia in two years, with at least six teams that will be able to compete competitively,” Smith says.

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