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Windsurfing by Antoine Albeau

If you’re taking advantage of your camping vacation on the Ile de Ré to go surfing, paddle boarding, sailing or any other water sport at La Couarde-sur-Mer, you might spot a particular windsurfer from the beach: Antoine Albeau.

Multiple world champion and speed record holder

He was just 5 years old and already windsurfing! With a father who owns a sailing school on the beach at La Couarde, Antoine Albeau, a child of La Rochelle, has been immersed in ocean activities from an early age. After being crowned French champion in several juvenile categories, he went from prodigy to professional in 1992. It was the first step in a formidable sporting career… Unstoppable, he was crowned world windsurfing champion 24 times, making him the most successful French sportsman in history.

This trophy collector is also a record hunter. In 2008, he broke the windsurfing speed record. He improved on his own record in 2012, topping 100 km/h. Antoine Albeau also completed several major crossings in record time (Channel crossing, Guadeloupe-Martinique). He was voted “Sailor of the Year” in 2010 and created a French funboard team in 2012.

A man attached to his island

If paradise exists, it’s on the Charente archipelago and is called Ré la Blanche. Antoine Albeau is convinced. He loves cycling through the salt marshes and strolling through the streets of Ars-en-Ré and La Flotte at any time of year.

He’s particularly fond of spring and autumn, when the Île de Ré is back to its usual rhythm and offers the chance to watch marvelous sunsets. To meet him, all you have to do is go to the beach at La Couarde, to the family sailing school, or follow the wild coastline, scanning the shoreline for an unusual windsurfer.