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May 8, 2018

Wind barrier is coming to Montemor-o-Velho

Wind Barrier to control the side wind problem at High performance center in Montemor-o-Velho is coming for the 2018 Canoe Sprint World Championships.

The goal was set during the 2017 ICF Canoe Sprint World Cup, in a meeting with the city hall and the ICF Canoe Sprint Committee chairman, Frank Garner.

At that time it was clear that the bamboo original project was not working due to the lack of maintenance and difficulties associated to it, and that a short term solution would pass to build an artificial structure, so the 2018 ICF canoe Sprint worlds could be protected against a bad wind day in Montemor-o-Velho in august 2018.

At that time a name as come into the possible solution, an American company, specialized in Wind barrier solutions, with a vast knowledge.

With the first contacts with this company done in middle 2017, the solution started to be projected and in the beginning of 2018, the first tests were made at the venue , with the eyes of the Canoe Sprint Committee and ICF staff focused in this project, in a inspection, on site, done in February.

As seen in the picture below, just 40 meters of curtain at 7,5 meters high produced a completely different scenario on the course and proved that the side wind can be reduced dramatically. 

 First test barrier

40 meters test barrier effect

Even with a very positive history of wind conditions in most of the international events competition days, and with august being one of the months with low level of side wind, the organizing committee set the goal to have 1000 meters of wind barrier, to avoid the strong side wind if he appears during the 5 days competition in 2018 world Championships.

The objective is not to eliminate 100% of the wind, as this venue will always be affected by windy conditions, due to the place where it was built, but create fair conditions to all lanes with reduced side wind effect.

This week, weathersolve CEO, Mike Robison, visited Montemor-o-Velho High performance Centre to make the final adjustments to this project and to close deal with the organization committee and with the City hall, the two investors in the project.

The wind barrier solution will be an investment of almost 140.000 euros, and it’s a pioneer project inside this sport. 

A similar solution was once projected to Oklahoma venue in USA, but never went real, as it is going to be in Montemor-o-Velho later this year.

This wind barriers are mostly used in Agriculture and industrial sector, with some golf fields being also using this technology to fight strong winds.

Joining this project there is a secondary effort, that will be moving all the complete albano system closer to the wind barrier side of the course, to reduce the number of meters need to be protected.

The goal is set, and we hope that in 2018 ICF Canoe Sprint World Championships, ICF and local organization can deliver a much more fair and even more exciting race.

Wind barrier presentation to ICF in February 2018

Wind barrier test, course impact 

Weathersolve CEO Mike Robison at Montemor-o-Velho

Samples of the net to be used in the wind barrier system

Mike Robisson (WeatherSolve) with Portuguese Canoe Federation board members