Edit ModuleShow Tags

Alone At The Bottom of the World


Published:

Brad Van Liew, an adrenaline junkie who grew up sailing San Diego Bay, is aboard his 60-foot sailboat Le Pingouin, climbing 32-foot waves of gray-green salt water, passing icebergs and watching a horizon that stretches thousands of miles to the next port off Antarctica.

Alone.

Van Liew, 42, is one of five entrants in the Velux 5 Oceans, a 30,000-mile round-the-world, singlehanded yacht race held every four years. The tough, dangerous solo venture across the North Atlantic, South Atlantic, Indian, South Pacific and Southern oceans has in past years brought dismastings and death. The race started last October in La Rochelle, France; it stops in four ports — Cape Town, South Africa; Wellington, New Zealand; Salvador, Brazil; and Charleston, South Carolina — and finishes in France this spring.

Van Liew calls his refitted Open 60 monohull painted NASCAR yellow a “weapon.” A professional sailor since 1997, he has done this race twice before and won it in 2003, aboard Tommy Hilfiger’s Freedom America.

Born in Los Angeles, Van Liew moved to Rancho Santa Fe with his family when he was 2. He played football at Francis Parker High School and spent his free time racing motocross, scuba diving and sailing the 26-foot race­boat he kept at Coronado Cays Yacht Club.

He lives in Charleston with wife Meaghan and two small children, Tate Magellan and Wyatt. Still, he says, “San Diego will always be my home. It is the city I gauge all others against. I miss Taco Auctioneer in Solana Beach if it is still there!”

Follow Brad Van Liew around the world at ­velux5oceans.com and oceanracing.org.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Related Stories

January Contributors

Three writers talk workout trends, resolutions, and the art of a good book

Behind the Scenes: Making the January Issue

Our January issue goes inside the juice trend, divulging everything about the healthy bottled beverages

San Diego New Year’s Eve Guide

Ring in 2015 at these parties, concerts, dining, and family-friendly events
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. 10 Best New Restaurants in San Diego
    Our food critic picks the top 10 new restaurants of 2014. Time to add these hotspots to your must-try list.
  2. FIRST LOOK: Stella Public House & Halcyon
    Stella Public House and Halcyon open in East Village near Downtown San Diego. Part coffeehouse, part Neapolitan pizza joint, park cocktails and craft beer, part tableside s'mores.
  3. San Diego New Year’s Eve Guide
    Ring in 2015 at these parties, concerts, dining, and family-friendly events
  4. 25 BIG Ideas
    Fascinating San Diego people inspire us with big, bold ideas on everything from genomics to urban planning, art to architecture, food and more
  5. About that story we "stole"...
    8 things to ask yourself before you accuse a publication of stealing your stuff and barf all over their beautiful Facebook page
  6. Food Self-Righteousness Is For Assholes
    Gawker calls foie gras eaters lots of bad names. A response.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Promotions

Go Ahead... Ask McMillin!

At McMillin Realty, we are encouraging you to bring us your real estate questions. We will answer these questions….. for free.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit Module

Connect With Us:

Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags