Heineken Regatta, Port de Plaisance, Sailing



March 1st all the participating teams of  St Maarten Heineken Regatta could register and pick up their bow numbers and class flag. Over 100 boats  representing 25 different countries entered the port of Simpson Bay, each having their unique story about getting to the Heineken Regatta.


Guy Chester on Trimaran Ocean tribute, sailed from New-Zealand past Australia and South-Africa, before crossing the Atlantic Ocean with a total distance travelled at 16500 nautical miles. J133 Bella J also did an impressive route, she sailed from Canada all the way to the Caribbean. Not everyone chose such a challenging journey, for example Cape 31 Flying Jenny who came straight from her home based into the USA. She is also one of the sponsors. The participant who arrived trough the most unusual way was the team of GFA Caraibes, who hitched a ride all the way from Martinique.


The weather during the Regatta was a hot topic for the last few weeks for participating teams as well as the management team. It is stated that the Regatta will start with a light wind of 8-10 knots, but will build up everyday. Furthermore, there will be two starting and finishing area’s. There will be one in Cole Bay and one in Simpson Bay. The races mostly go back forth to St. Barths and there are also the round the buoys windward-leeward races. A decision yet to be made, is when the Round the Island race is going to take place. That decision completely depends from the weather. When the teams registered, most of them were going out on the water to practice. This way, the teams could get to know each other and analyze everybody’s strengths and weaknesses.


While all the participants and a part of the management team are busy preparing everything for the race, other management team members focus the ‘serious fun’. The Regatta Village at Port de Plaisance will be open during the whole event, with Thursday until Saturday free entry. People are already gathering around the bar enjoying a Heineken beer, Fuji water, Veuve Cliquot champagne or cocktails from Tito’s vodka. FLOW is also present at the village, providing super fast Wi-Fi. There are also some shopping options: Oris watches, Island 92, Seahawk paints supported by Shipwreck shops and the St Maarten Yacht club.


At the Regatta village there will be local artists performing everyday. There are also the green zones across the island, located at  Lotus Night clubSoggy Dollars, Moonbar, Eleve8 and Bikini Beach, Orient Bay. The closing party at Sunday will be at the village featuring Grammy award winning Kofee.


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