About me

Justin Slattery
Date of Birth:
08 July, 1974
1.85 m
84 kg
Marital Status:

Question & answer

  • When and where did you first sail?
    Wexford Harbour Boat Club, Ireland in 1989 in a 'Mirror dinghy.' I was 16.
  • What has been your proudest sailing moment?
    Winning the Volvo Ocean Race in 2005/6.
  • Can you recall your scariest moment at sea?
    One of our team mates on our second entry was washed overboard and died on ABN AMRO 2. Even though I was on ABN AMRO one, I'll never forget the moment we heard.
  • In 3 words, summarise your role on the boat?
  • What do you miss most when you are at sea?
  • How are you enjoying life in Abu Dhabi?
    It's been great sailing in the Arabian Gulf since Christmas. Good wind with a challenging seaway. It's been a great training venue for the sailing team. We've been made very welcome in Abu Dhabi. There are  lots going on in terms of events and sports so always something new and exciting to look forward to.
  • Best Abu Dhabi moment?
    Sailing downwind towards Abu Dhabi in a Shamal (Desert gale).
  • What do you think visitors to Abu Dhabi can expect when the yachts come in on New Year's day?
    It will be exciting to see these state-of-the-art machines up close and watch the Volvo 70s in action right on Abu Dhabi's seafront. I'm sure the crews will have some harrowing stories to tell from the leg into Abu Dhabi.
  • Which leg of the race are you most excited about and why?
    First Leg – it will be the first time we get to really see what our opposition is like in terms of performance and see if all our hard work over the training, build and design period pays off. Sailing in to Abu Dhabi will be like sailing home and exciting for us and sailing home to Ireland on the last leg will be very special for me.
  • Who is your sailing inspiration?
    My dad and any sailor called ‘Shag’.
  • Are there any 'home comforts' that you'll be sneaking on board?
    Probably not! We tend to sacrifice everything for performance.
  • What's the first thing you'll do when you reach port after each leg?
    Eat some real food.
  • Do you have any tips for budding young sailors who are keen to get started?
    Never give up – sailing is a challenging sport which is advancing and changing every day – No two days will ever be the same, there will always be new challenges, whether it's the winds, sea or the yachts – enjoy them.
  • What would you have done if you hadn't been a sailor?
  • How will you prepare for the race? (exercise/food/sleep)
    Get as strong as possible before the start. Be prepared in every area.
  • How important is winning to you?
    It's everything.
  • How will you keep morale high if you experience any difficulties. How will you keep everyone focused/entertained?
    We're all highly motivated – never giving up, remaining positive in bad situations will always help. Finding solutions rather that dwelling on our difficulties.
  • What is the best piece of advice you have been given about the race i.e. 'look after the boat and it will look after you'?
    One hand for the yacht one hand for yourself (no matter how important what you're doing is - look after yourself ).
  • What would we find under your bunk?
    A stack of food, spares, tools. And a pair of smelly boots.

Meet Justin Slattery


Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing’s bowman Justin Slattery is not a man to be messed with - he has one of the toughest and least envied jobs on-board.

Yet it is a job he relishes, and he has the sailing credentials to back it up. The 37-year-old father-of-one has won some of yachting’s most prestigious trophies. Sailing as bowman on ABN AMRO One in the 2005/06 Volvo Ocean Race, Justin was instrumental in the Dutch outfit taking top honours.

In 2004, Slattery from Cork, Ireland was bowman on American businessman Steve Fossett’s record-breaking 2004 world circumnavigation, which he followed up the next summer by breaking the record for the famous Fastnet Race onboard ICAP Leopard.

my all time top 5 achievements

  • 2010 - Louis Vuitton Finalist - Team Synergy - 2nd
  • 2009 - Maxi Worlds - Team Skandia - Winner
  • 2007 - Basilica Extreme 40 Championships - 1st
  • 2006 - Volvo Ocean Race - Team ABN AMRO - Winner
  • 2004 - Round the World record with Steve Fossett

The Irishman – who at the tender age of 23 held the trans-Atlantic record on Nicorette – then joined Abu Dhabi Ocean Racing’s current skipper, Ian Walker of Great Britain, on-board the 2008/09 Volvo Ocean Race outfit, Green Dragon.

Since then, Slattery - who finished runner-up in the 2010 Louis Vuitton series and won the Maxi One Design Worlds last year – has settled back with his former skipper in the UAE capital, as he hopes to again work his Volvo Ocean Race magic for the Abu Dhabi team.