Team Erik de Jong
Erik de Jong is a naval architect born into an offshore sailing family. Growing up in the Netherlands, most vacations were spent sailing in Norway, Iceland and Scotland. Already at a very young age, Erik knew that he wanted one day to sail in the high latitudes with his own boat. Everything in life revolved around that idea. Bagheera was designed by Erik when he was only 16 years old, and construction, which was done by Erik and his father, followed only five and half years later. His working life was spent with North Sails as a sail and rig designer, and later as a naval architect for small commercial vessels and the odd sailing yacht. Before Bagheera was ready to sail, every opportunity for offshore sailing was grabbed with both hands resulting in multiple trans-Atlantics, many trips to the high north and several offshore races. Now that Bagheera, a purpose built, ice-reinforced, high latitude vessel, is finished, Erik can be found up north in the summer months.
In his active life as a sailmaker, Erik has been involved in a lot of racing. Races varied from the Worlds in the J-24 and J-22 to Round Brittain and Ireland race, 1000-miles double handed and various other shorthanded offshore races. Interested in Yacht design, the ocean and extreme adventure, the Vendee Globe has always been high on the list of interest. Time has come to combine the extensive long distance cruising with the interest of new technology in yachtdesign and racing; Vendee 2020 is now number 1 on the priority list!