At the 2012 IKA Course Racing World Championship in Cagliari, Italy Erika Heineken was untouchable, matching her younger brother and Male ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Nominee Johnny Heineken. Speed combined with finesse and a desire to claim her first World Championship title culminated in an impressive score card. Heineken notched up 11 race victories in the 42-strong fleet and only three second place finishes blighted a near faultless week for the American as she claimed gold.
Achievements between 31 September 2012 and 31 August 2013
2 - African Continental Championships, Soma Bay, Egypt - April 2013
1 - North American Championships, San Francisco, USA - June 2013 (Open 29th of 74 overall)
1 - SF Bay Classic Distance Race - San Francisco, USA (3rd of 14 overall)
1 - AC Open - Big Cats and Kites - San Francisco, USA - July 2013 (7th of 31 overall)
1 - Canadian Nationals - Squamish, British Columbia, Canada (9th of 37 overall) - July 2013
1 - Course Racing World Championship, Cagliari, ITA - October 2012
1 - Fall Dinghy Regatta, San Francisco, USA - October 2012 (Open - 3rd overall)
#3 IKA Rankings
What inspired you to take up sailing?
My families summer home was a sailboat, so I grew up around water and was hooked on sailing from a young age..
What was the first boat you ever sailed and how old were you?
El Toro, 6yrs
Name your first sailing club
St. Francis Yacht Club
What was the first event you competed in and in what year?
29er US Nationals 2005
What are you personal sailing career highlights?
2012 Kiteboard Course Race World Champion, Runner-up 2012 US Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year
What are your future sailing goals?
I will continue developing the sport, going faster, and having fun traveling the world to compete. I also hope to continue growing our local women's fleet and to continue coaching the juniors who are starting to race with us..
Who has had the greatest impact on your sailing and career and why?
Dad because he got me windsurfing and Johnny because he got me kiting..
Who is your sailing hero?
My little brother Johnny
What other sports do you enjoy?
Snowboarding, snowkiting, bocce ball, volleyball
What does being nominated for the ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards mean to you and how would you feel if you were voted the winner?
Not only does this nomination make me proud, it's something that recognizes the many people who have supported my kiting career. Our talented local fleet, the members of the St. Francis Yacht Club, my sponsors, and my family have provided endless encouragement. I owe my success to this community, and being a nominee for the Sailor of the Year is the best way I can give back. If I were to win, it would be a significant step for the kiteboarding class.