St Maarten Heineken Regatta, Simpson Bay, St Maarten yacht club




From March 2nd until March 5th 2023, the 43rd edition of the St Maarten Heineken Regatta took place. Looking back at the well-received event, we see that the multihull class caught the attention of the public.



New to the Caribbean racing scene, LODIGROUP’s ORC50 proved that the Volvos are not the only boats who can rule the ocean racing scene and also perform at a top international Regatta. Repeat St. Maarten Heineken Regatta race team 2 2 Tango, who normally takes top position in Multihull 1 at the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, got a run for their money as LODIGROUP took first in the favorite Around the Island Race. The friendly competition and “Serious Fun!” That the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta is best known for was present on the prize giving stage as teams genuinely congratulated their fellow competitors.2 2 Tango owner Anthony McVeigh took the mic to say that LODIGROUP was their “best competition yet!”



Theoretically, a regular 24-foot boat should take much longer than a 70-foot ocean racer to circumnavigate the island, but the Diam 24s are no regular boat. Both Diam 24 fleet leaders Crybaby and Karibuni finished alongside the Volvo fleet, with both boats beating Volvo 70 HYPR in elapsed time, and CryBaby finished just 20 minutes behind fleet leader I LOVE POLAND. The ocean racer reflects on his big move, “I saw these trimarans keeping up with the Volvos around the island and they looked like a blast! I knew it would be fun trying something completely different, but the thrill was even bigger actually racing these machines around the island. The impact of this fleet on the island reaches beyond the sailing community, to youth development and diplomacy between the French and Dutch sides of the island.



“The Diam teams come from both the French and Dutch sides of the island, demonstrating unity on the water. The fleet also showcases social sustainability as youth have become involved. The boats are very easy to handle, they are fast with big margins that are easy to attain,” said Pierre Altier. The trophy ultimately went to La Novia for lowest average points. The Multihull classes had great diversity in size, crew, and hailing ports across the fleet. Trimaran Oceans Tribute had the longest journey to get to the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta, with many solo ocean miles logged by Skipper Guy Chester between Australia and the Caribbean. Multihull 2 was led by the Dominican Republic team and Multihull 3 was an family affair.



After the racing, spectators, sailors and other visitors enjoyed amongst other things ice-cold Heineken at the Heineken Regatta Village at Port de Plaisance or at one of the greenzones throughout the island. The next Heineken Regatta will be from February 29 – March 3, 2024!



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