#som – Neil Hegarty of Cork, who was awarded the Irish Cruising Club's historic premier trophy, the Faulkner Cup, as February drew to a close, is our latest Sailor of the Month.
A former dinghy sailor who was at the front of the fleet both as crew and helm in boats as diverse as IDRA 14s, Enterprises and 505s, Hegarty went on to campaign keelboats with the J/24 and Impala 28 fleets. He has since graduated with aplomb into long distance voyaging and detailed cruising in exotic locations with his 2003 Dufour 34 Shelduck.
His award-winning 2014 cruise was Transatlantic from Cascais in Portugal via the Canaries to the the Caribbean, which was then cruised in detail including Cuba, followed by island and port-hopping along the East Coast USA until eventually the boat was laid up in advance of the hurricane season near the Chesapeake.
In the finest traditions of cruising, he not only kept an informative log, but at its conclusion he made a detailed analysis of all the special equipment which he had found particularly useful during this exemplary voyage.
However, Neil Hegarty's cruising for 2014 didn't end with Shelduck's berthing at the Chesapeake. As his cruising partner is Ann Kenny of Tralee Bay whose Chance 37 Tam O'Shanter is currently based in the Baltic, at the height of the superb Baltic summer of 2014 they had three weeks of idyllic cruising with Tam O'Shanter in that magnificent stretch of water, the perfect complement to the award-winning ocean voyaging of Shelduck.