Jul 28, 2013

12yrs old Henri Demesmaeker & Jeroen van Leeuwen F16 World Champs

Images Sebbe Godefroid. Americas Cup, Olympics are on the headlines , but this weekend the news was this kid above becoming World Champ on an International ISAF Class that was 2nd choice to become Olympic at Santander Trials. To have an idea of level of the F16 in past years, the last WC was Darren Bundock, one of Henri's mentors. Of course you can have one of the best crew on the planet like Jeroen van Leeuwen (2x F18 WC) to help you out but still you need to helm the Viper F16 all the way in every single race.

Henri has been sailing cats his 'whole' life by now as described by Lauren Verbeeck "Henri started on the age of 7 on a Catsy. When he was 8 - 9 he sailed the Hobie Dragoon. At the age of 11 he started to sail in the C3 class (16 feet: Hobie Max and SL16). Now, at the age of 12, he combines SL16 and F16."

Crew report by AHPCWe actually came here without great expectations and were not expecting to win. Henri has done a fantastic job. The more wind came, the more fun we had”, said Jeroen
Henri is result of the Royal Belgian Sailing Club commitment to kids on catamarans and their development program lead by head coach and Olympian Sebbe Godefroid.
“I am so Happy right now” said 12 year old Henri “everyone put me on their shoulders and then threw me in the water”.

Henri Demesmaeker is one of a kind, no dad should force their kids to this level at that age! but it seems he is enjoying big time and having fun, and that is the most important thing of this story.

F16 Worlds Report by Gill de Bruyne published yesterday at  catsailingnews.com/2013/07/formula-16-worlds-2013-travemunde.html

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