In a North Charleston warehouse, the boat is stripped, sanded, and painted. The crew will also outfit the vessel with new hardware, electronics, wiring, and sails. Photograph by Kaitlyn Iserman.
In December 2002, Brad Van Liew departs Cape Town, South Africa, and heads into the Southern Ocean on the third leg of his winning Around Alone voyage aboard Tommy Hilfiger Freedom America.
Wyatt, Meaghan, Brad, and Tate sit at the transom of Le Pengouin during pre-race preparations. The family is participating in a reality TV series about the race that will be hosted and produced by Phil Keoghan of CBS’s The Amazing Race. Photograph by Kaitlyn Iserman
Light weather, known as the doldrums, is frustratingly slow for the racer, because every mile counts.
To repair the gennaker halyard, a line that hoists the sails, Brad climbs solo to the top of his mast. His bruised arms document the rough nature of such an endeavor.
Brad braves rough seas in full offshore weather gear, including harnesses to strap himself to the boat
At the nav station, he sleeps in catnaps that average 26 minutes.
Brad braves rough seas in full offshore weather gear, including harnesses to strap himself to the boat.
From the Southern Ocean, he wishes eight-month-old Tate Merry Christmas for the first time via satellite phone.
On Christmas Day, with only photos to keep him company, Brad opened a small pile of gifts, including books, DVDs, and a pint-sized African tree.
Meaghan works out of a VW van on sponsorship and media coverage. Photographs by Billy Black.
The late Simone Bianchetti sailed Le Pengouin in the 2002-03 race under the sponsor name Tiscali. Photographs by Billy Black.
A press conference upon Brad’s arrival in Charleston. Photographs by Billy Black.
Meaghan and baby Tate greet Brad upon his arrival in Cape Town following a storm-ridden journey from England; this is only the second time he’s seen her in more than two months. Photographs by Billy Black.
Brad sails off the coast of South Africa just beyond Cape Town’s prominent Table Mountain. Photographs by Billy Black.
Kurt Oberle of High & Dry Boat Works organizes provisions. Photographs by Billy Black.
Fellow sailor Bruce Schwab and the Van Liews. Photographs by Billy Black
In December 2002, the competitors take off for Tauranga, New Zealand, for a 35-day stint at sea. Brad spent Christmas alone on the open ocean. Photographs by Billy Black
Photograph by Meaghan Van Liew
The Race Route: Velux 5 Oceans. After departing from La Rochelle, France, competitors circumnavigate the globe across five oceans, stopping in five ports along the way: Cape Town, South Africa; Wellington, New Zealand; Salvador, Brazil; Charleston, South Carolina; then back to La Rochelle. Boats will begin arriving in Charleston around April 25 and leave May 14 on the final leg back to France. The Van Liews plan to be highly involved in the Lowcountry stop. Image courtesy of www.velux5oceans.com
vanliewpg21.jpgAlthough the boat has raced under several sponsor names (see page 57), it is officially registered as Le Pengouin. “Since I’m going back to my solo sailing roots, I thought I’d go back to the roots of the boat as well,” says Brad. Original photograph by Jacques Vapillon.
Marine Corps: For two months this winter, Brad and his crew took turns sailing the Open 60 yacht across the Atlantic to Detyens Shipyards. Photograph by Pepe Hernandez.