CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WVEC) -- It still seems like a long time from now, but, the 2017 race for governor in Virginia is already heating up.

There are six candidates, and one of them campaigned in Chesapeake today.

Republican Denver Riggleman met with voters in Great Bridge. Riggleman owns an alcohol distillery in Nelson county, and he is a former Air Force intelligence officer.

He met with several dozen voters at Panera Bread in Great Bridge. He said he is all about cutting regulations for small businesses and he supports individual liberties.

He says his background brings a fresh perspective to the race.

"For the first time in a long time there's someone who's one of them running for office , and somebody who has absolutely nobody with their hands in my pocket," he said. "And that allows me to say things and do things that are honest and they're transparent."

Riggleman is competing against Ed Gillespie, Frank Wagner and Cory Stewart for the G.O.P. nomination. The Democrats have two candidates: Ralph Northam and Tom Perriello.

State-wide primaries for both parties will take place on June 13th.