The launch of the world famous sailing ship in Hellevoetsluis on Friday – Advertising Hellevoetsluis | Big heelfoot
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Hellevoetsluis – The legendary sailing ship Magic, which put the America’s Cup back in Americans’ hands, will be permanently docked at Haringvliet in Hellevoetsluis from Friday 5 May. Anyone can navigate it. “There is real sailing history here,” says co-owner of iSail sailing school in Hellevoetsluis, Brent Biesheuvel, who bought the racing boat out of pure passion for the sport. Completely restored to its original competition condition, the ship is ready for its first sea trial.
Magic, the name of the boat, and especially the older sailors are guaranteed to look them up. Racers around the world turned to TV in 1987 to watch Dennis Conner win the world’s most important race with the 19-meter Magic and put the America’s Cup back in American hands. Viewers of the Netflix series Untold: The Race of the Century will learn the story of this ship’s triumph in Formula 1 sailing races.
“And now she is definitely here,” says Brent Biesheuvel (28) of iSail, who bought the ship with Hellevoetsluis sailing school last year after the ship had been on the side for six years in Willemstad. “This was a real gift from God,” he says. Together with about 30 volunteers and students from sailing schools, the ship was refurbished, restored to its original condition, and painted in the original colours. “At first it was in the hands of a couple of Swedes. But they thought the ship was too rough,” Bechevel laughs. “Then, a Dutch couple bought Magic to refurbish the ship.” However, those plans never materialized.
The ship was purchased in May last year, and now exactly one year later it has been completed. Everything inside the ship has been taken out, and what remains is a nearly 24-ton Spartan sailing machine. “We just left the toilet in place, which we thought would come in handy if we wanted to sail with groups.” Because that’s the point, making charters. “What interests us is that we can be part of the historical story of this ship. We have brought part of the history to Hellevoetsluis.”
“Nobody needs to be able to sail to come and experience the feel of a Formula 1 race boat. We keep it accessible, but everyone gets a mission on board. It’s probably similar to what it’s like to be able to drive a Max Verstappen race car. “That smile didn’t leave my face for a whole week!”
At launch on Friday May 5th around noon, a bottle of champagne will of course be thrown at the bow. The ship is easy to find as its mast is 29 meters high. “It towers over all the ships in Hellevoetse Veerhaven.” Saturday is the first experience for the legendary cup winner. Then it will be available to the groups, led by captain Brent Bischovel and co-owner Gerard Junker.
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