Le Pingoiun debuts in 2012 RegattaPOSTED: 11/30/11 7:00 AM
St. Maarten – Organizers of the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta announced on Tuesday that Brad Van Liew has entered his Open 60, Le Pingouin, into the 2012 event which takes place March 1 to 4. The organizers will also welcome back Antilope, the46’Grand Soleil, skippered by Volvo Ocean Race legend Bouwe Bekking. The vessel took second place in their class during the 2011 event.
Le Pingouin recently underwent a $1 million refit replacing everything with state of the art equipment. It is capable of sustained speeds of 25+ knots and a top speed to date of 38 knots, making it one of the participants to keep an 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. Van Liew, owner and skipper of the boat, is the only American to race around the world three times. He has won two of those races. Recently while crossing the Equator during his solo challenge of circling the globe under sails he sent his daughter a message in a bottle at her request. Nine months later that bottle turned up on the shores of St.Maarten, on a beach in GuanaBayand was found by a seven year old 2ndgrader, who contacted van Liew to let him know where the bottle landed. That bottle traveled over2000 miles to land on the islands shores.
Antilope, will have world famous Dutch sailor Bouwe Bekking aboard. He has participated in five 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 2nd in the CSA 5 class in the2011 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.