Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Le Pingouin

Allow me to introduce Le Pingouin. This name is actually not new to the boat. Back in 1998 when the boat was built in France Catherine Chabaud registered the boat with officials as Le Pingouin, although her sponsor Whirlpool took the large share of branding. Although the boat changed hands several times and donned the graphics of many corporate sponsors, it has always been technically registered as Le Pingouin. Having circled the globe three times already, I think she has a rich heritage in the world of ocean racing.

Despite an enormous amount of time and effort in seeking a Title/Naming Sponsor for the upcoming race, we have not secured a company wishing to brand the 10,000 square feet of space available on the sails and hull and enjoy the vast media and hospitality perks. So without an all-American brand or global company involved, we went back to the roots of the boat, just as I have gone back to my roots of ocean racing after years of land-based activities. We hope the graphics, designed by cre843, showcase the potential for creative branding onboard. When we land a Title/Naming Sponsor, the name of the boat and lion’s share of graphics will be changed to reflect the graphic choices of the sponsor.

So what about that penguin? Meg thinks he looks angry. I say he is determined. The prospect of sailing 30,000 miles alone in some of the roughest ocean terrain is intimidating, and I think you need a certain amount of tension to face the challenges. A perky, happy penguin image would not be right for the race. I expressed my emotions about the race and preparations for the event with Brian Zimmerman of cre843, a design firm based in Charleston. He developed the friendly but fierce penguin and the design of the hull, deck and sails.

You might see our tagline in some of the photos which states “FULL NOISE OR NO NOISE.” It takes extreme measures to get a boat race-ready with a small team and limited funding. We are either pushing really hard or chilling out. We do it right or we don’t do it at all. Offshore, this translates into an attitude of determination and using every ounce of physical and mental energy I have to compete well and be the first American to officially complete three solo races around the world.

We will get more great photos as the branding is complete and we roll Le Pingouin out of the shed. Thanks to all the individuals and companies that have been supportive of our efforts thus far, including B&G, Simrad, Gill, Samson, Awlgrip, Harken, High and Dry Boatworks, Alpine Aire, Detyens, CMMC Machine, Charleston Rigging, and many others. Thanks for checking in!


Photos below by Tim Eble:

My son Wyatt checking out the boat - Photo by Meaghan