Sailing close to the wind in the endurance test of a lifetime
The Vendee Globe has claimed many lives in its 30 years, but Enda O'Coineen is determined to finish the gruelling solo race that will take him around the world
I was emotionally charged leaving Ireland this week to head for France and prepare for the toughest challenge of my life.
My departure was a magical send-off, bidding farewell to the Honorary Admiral of Dublin Port - the title bestowed on the capital's Lord Mayor, Brendan Carr - as well as to the 130 excited school children who are part of a National Schools Programme and who will be following our adventure, as will our family, friends, well-wishers and supporters.
Only the French could have dreamt up the 'Vendee Globe', which rightly deserves its nickname the 'Everest of the Seas'. It's a solo race around the world, from west to east, non-stop and without assistance.