With the St.Maarten Heineken Regatta 2012 just a few months away, organizers are pleased to see that the entries are coming in.
Le Pingouin 2. Photo supplied by St.Maarten Heineken Regatta
Brad Van Liew's Open 60, Le Pingouin, has entered in the event which takes place March 1 to 4. In addition the organizers welcome back Antilope, the 46’ Grand Soleil to be skippered by Volvo Ocean Race legend Bouwe Bekking. At the 2011 event Antilope took home a second place in their class. The St.Maarten Heineken Regatta will celebrate its 32nd edition and has already seen several new boats as well as a few returning sailors on the entry list.
Le Pingouin has recently undergone a one million USD refit replacing everything with state of the art equipment. Capable of sustained speeds of 25 plus knots and a top speed to date of 38 knots, this will be one of the participants to keep and eye on in the 2012 event. Le Pingouin swept all legs of the recent Velux 5 Ocean Race and is available for charter either as a group or individually, and would be an experience like no other.
Brad Van Liew, owner and skipper of the boat, is the only American to race around the world three times of which he has won two of those races. Recently, while crossing the Equator during his solo challenge of circling the globe under sails, Brad sent his daughter a message in a bottle, which she had requested he do for her so that someday she would know where it traveled. Amazingly nine months later that bottle turned up on the shores of St.Maarten, on a beach in Guana Bay, and was found by a seven year old secondgrader, who contacted Brad to let him know where the bottle landed. That bottle traveled over 2000 miles to land on the islands shores. An amazing end to a great story.
Regatta entry Antilope will have world famous Dutch sailor Bouwe Bekking aboard. Bouwe, has participated five times in the Around the World Races and is a four time European Champion. His addition to the Antilope team is going to add to their already competitive atmosphere, and the regatta organizers are looking forward to seeing Antilope on the water in March. Antilope placed second in the CSA 5 class in the 2011 St.Maarten Heineken Regatta finishing just behind the J-122 Otra Vez which was entered by William Coates. Regatta organizers are looking forward to seeing these world class sailors on the local waters, giving not only local racers but other international racers a run for their money.
For more information about chartering Le Pingouin visit www.oceanracing.org
To enter the St.Maarten Heineken Regatta visit www.heinekenregatta.com