Switching from multis back to monos and the Figaro in 2011

Switching from multis back to monos and the Figaro in 2011

Monday November 15 2010 Author: conrad Location: United Kingdom

Earlier this summer I decided to join the Artemis Academy to prepare for the Figaro in 2011 and a return to solo sailing. It has been over  four years since I last competed in a single-handed event, having switched to multihulls in 2005 with the Extreme 40 (2005-7) and the F18 (2007-9). The multihull sailing has proved invaluable because you learn much more about flow (sails /foils) than in keelboats.  It also sharpens your instinct. The Extreme 40 was great fun, and itsbeen amazing to watch its progression from the first events in 2005, when so many people (including funnily enough OC) wrote it off. The last three seasons with the F18 have also been brilliant, particularly racing the Archipelago Raid against people like Eric Proust and Martin Strandberg. The steep learning curve of sailing multis has been invaluable but now I want to turn my attention back to single-handed sailing, with the aim of a return to the Vendee Globe in the near future.

My last campaign with communications giant, Motorola gave me the opportunity to take part in the Vendee. What not many people realise is that my relationship with Motorola was more than just sailing. It started in 2002, just ahead of the Route du Rhum, when Motorola as a company was in decline after the telecoms crash in the late 90’s and had laid off thousands of staff. Knowing that I had recently led a team to victory in the BT Global Challenge, they asked if I would create a leadership programme for their staff and in return, they sponsored my entry into the turbulent 2002 edition of the Route du Rhum.  In 2003 with the TJV, I was still engaging Motorola’s employees, even doing live phone-ins from the Atlantic.  Securing backing from a major sponsor comes with many additional responsibilities, some not always geared to racing, but I’ve learnt a huge amount about delivering value  for sponsors over the last 10 years particularly since the Vendee, now  through my own company Sport Environment.

So, in 2010 now with a young family (Katelyn who is three and Isabel who is one) more settled, I’ve decided to return to solo sailing, but with a balanced campaign that will start next year with La Solitaire du Figaro and then move onto the Transat in 2012. I’m realistic about my chances in the Figaro and I’m looking forward to lining up against the best solo sailors in the world. By joining the Artemis Academy this year, I have access to a structured training programme, advice and coaching. From here, I will charter a Figaro in 2011 and look for a sponsor to cover some of the costs. I see 2011 as a transition year, balancing some amazing work commitments, before returning to sailing full time in 2012.

I look forward to building a new highly visible campaign over the next 5 years with some fantastic partners and friends.

Conrad Humphreys, www.conradhumphreys.com

Tags: ConradHumphreys, Extreme 40, La Solitaire, Solo Sailing, Vendee Globe, Sport Environment

Add a comment - Members log in

You can ...

Ads from conrad