FULL STEAM AHEAD
With just under 1.5 years to go before the start of The Ocean Race 2021/22, our Team Childhood 1, like everybody else, is affected by the Covid-19 outbreak. We had a couple of very successful events during the winter months. The highlights being winning the line honours in the RORC Transatlantic and becoming the top contender of all the Volvo 65´s racing during the St. Martin Heineken regatta and then all of a sudden our campaign “stopped”.
Four planned racing events in the Caribbean got cancelled and Team Childhood 1 who had their base in St Martin more or less got stuck there. All flights into St Martin got cancelled by the two major European airlines, so what to do next? Luckily we still had our boat captain there, so he was able to do the daily required maintenance and keep the boat in top shape. Being in the Caribbean doesn’t sound bad at all, but the Hurricane season starts soon, so we like to get Childhood 1 out of there in time.
The status right now is that the crew can fly in via Paris to Guadaloupe and from there take a small plane into the French side of St Martin. Sounds easier than done: plenty of paperwork and necessary documents are required to enter France and to get onboard the flight. And the flights are still not confirmed.
Once the boat leaves St Martin, they should be able to get back to Holland in 2-3 weeks . The crew will push the boat when they can, but always keep in mind that the bottom-line is getting the boat back without any damage. There is only a short window for preparation for our next event: the Gotland Runt Race. The largest offshore race in the Baltic, starting in the center of Stockholm in the end of June and finishing out side the archipelago in Sandhamn. Without the support of the Swedish company Slätto, it wouldn’t have been possible to sail under the name of Childhood1. Hopefully we can do something back for them in defending the overall title we won last year sailing under the name HIQ sailing team.
We have a contract until the end the of September 2020 to sail under the name Childhood1. Without putting all our eggs in one basket, we keep looking at all other opportunities there are to be on the starting line of The Ocean Race 2021/22. This includes that we are looking for partners / sponsors to join us. We know that there will be plenty of challenges and hurdles to overcome the Covid19 crisis and that our sport is not the most important thing right now. But we are positive and love this race and we will do everything to be on the starting line again!