Former Irish Sailor of the Year, Conor Fogarty arrived onto the dock in Dun Laoghaire from Les Sables de Olinges with “Raw”, a fresh out of the box, foiling Beneteau Figaro 3, Ireland’s first IRC foiling Figaro keelboat.
Conor, along with co-skipper Susan Glenny, is competing in the Dun Volvo Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race, starting on Wednesday the 12th of June. Susan who grew up in the UK, is returning to her Irish roots as her mother’s side are from Kilkerley co. Louth. Both have extensive offshore sailing CV’s including several transatlantic races and on some occasions competing against one another.
This is Raw’s first competitive race and it has been a very busy 36 hours for Conor and Susan and the team. Conor and Susan are looking at this venture as an intent to commit to become Ireland’s representation for the mixed two-person offshore keelboat event for the 2024 Olympics in Paris. This will be the first time mixed offshore racing will feature in the Olympics
Susan as a very rare professional female racing skipper with an extensive proven track record including skippering 4 Fastnet campaigns, 4 Caribbean 600 races and more recently the Rolex Middle Sera Race. She is one of the only females skippering a mixed team competing 52 weeks of the year all over the world. Conor and Susan have teamed up to accompany one another for some of the bigger Irish and UK offshore races.
Conor has 350,000 nautical miles of racing and sailing, including two “Round the World’s” and 31 transatlantics. Some of his latest wins include; 1st RORC Caribbean 600 2016, 1st OSTAR 2017, 1st RORC Caribbean 600 2018
Mixed offshore keelboat racing has replaced the Finn class in the 2024 Olympics and has opened up a different style of competitive racing to the sailing community. It can take years to build the stamina and decision making criteria to operate in an offshore sailing environment where conditions and hurdles can be harrowing and diverse. The capability to operate competitively when extremely sleep deprived is a key.
Susan and Conor have a fantastic relationship and are really looking forward to the Volvo Dun Laoghaire to Dingle Race.
Photo Credit: Rachel Fallon-Langdon