In addition, they are surviving on minimal sleep, battling the currents of the waters around the Irish coast and making tactical navigational decisions day and night.
Three bakers, one biochemist, two company owners and one industrial worker – most with little or no prior sailing experience – have taken on one of the world's toughest sailing challenges The 2014 Round Ireland Yacht Race aboard Desert Star, a Jeanneau Sunfast 37 racing yacht.
Corkman Ronan O'Siochru has made the dream possible for the novices. Passionate about sailing since the age of 10, he knew how difficult it was to get into sailing with no experience or knowledge. Three years ago he set up Irish Offshore Sailing in Dun Laoghaire, a business that allows him to indulge his own passion for sailing whilst also opening the sport up to a wider audience.
He came up with the novel idea of opening the Round Ireland Yacht Race to beginners by providing the racing yacht and bringing the seven crew together. He then worked around their hectic work and family schedules to provide the intense training and the minimum 300 nautical mile sailing experience required to enter the race.
Ronan says the seven crew, who range in age from from mid-30s to mid-50s, are having an intense adventure.
The crew consists of Louise Gray, a biochemist, from Monaghan; Yoav Arkin, based in Ranelagh; Ukraine- born baker Vladimir Yemets; Scott Nolan, from the UK, who works for Nokia;
our very own Noel Heary, Irish Power & Process; Brendan Coghlan, a baker from Dublin; and Polish-born Karol Tracz, who runs a bakery, cake and confectionery business.
"The sense of risk and dependence on each other galvanises people in a way you could never imagine," says Ronan. "By some strange twist of fate, three of the crew are bakers – but they couldn't be more different in personality. We have a very diverse bunch!
To follow their progress see more at: http://www.roundirelandyachtrace.ie/follow-the-race/race-tracker-2014/