When you think about windsurfing, the first image that springs to mind usually has bright sunshine and tropical waters.  However that is not the case with the Red Bull Storm Chase.  In this international competition, windsurfers are on standby for the call that three storm in succession.  Their goal is to battle the waves in storms above 10 Beaufort.  That means winds exceeding 55mph and waves higher than 29ft.

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Frenchman Thomas Traversa was crowned the champion of the storm surfing universe. Despite weighing just 60 kilos, Traversa won the final leg of the Red Bull Storm Chase in hurricane conditions off the coast of Cornwall, UK, in front of Marcilio Browne from Brazil and Leon Jamaer from Germany.

With building-high waves and gusts of wind reaching 70 knots, only the best were nominated to participate in the “Red Bull Storm Chase”. During an 18-month holding-period, ten of the world’s best windsurfers waited patiently to catch three of the biggest storms on oceans around the globe to determine who was the very best. After Mission 1 in Ireland (January 2013) and a second mission in Tasmania, Australia (August 2013), Red Bull Storm Chase picked the storm-ravaged coast of Cornwall, U.K., for the third and final location for a showdown between the remaining four.

Red Bull Storm Chase
(L-R) Marcilio Browne of Brasil 2nd place, Thomas Traversa of France 1st place and Leon Jamaer of Germany celebrate during the prize giving ceremony at the Mission 3 of the Red Bull Storm Chase at the Bluff in Cornwall, England on February 9 2014. // Sebastian Marko/Red Bull Content Pool