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  • Rachel Langdon: The Billionaire Whisperer

    If you have been paying attention over the past 10 years of the seemingly nonstop adventures of Phaedo, Phaedo 3 or FOMOm you certainly have come across the program management talents of one Rachel Fallon-Landon. Bill Springer wrote this piece for FORBES.com




    Rachel Fallon-Langdon sailing aboard the Eagle 53 catamaran. RICHARD LANGDON

    When it comes to fast yachts, and the billionaires own and race them, it’s hard to find someone more connected or experienced than Rachel Fallon-Langdon. We first met during the first “flights” of the hydrofoiling Gunboat G4 sailing catamaran in St. Martin several years ago. And while I was duly impressed when G4’s blistering, hydrofoiling speed during those first test sails (full disclosure, the G4 capsized during a regatta in St Barths shortly after my test and the company was subsequently sold), her energy, enthusiasm and ability to convince the worlds best sailors, (and the billionaires that pay the bills) to do what she told them to do impressed me even more.



    Rachel Fallon-Langdon aboard the Mod 70 Phaedo3 RICHARD LANGDON

    Turns out I shouldn’t have been that surprised. After growing up among the pop stars, race car drivers and other celebrities in Killiney, a tiny seaside suburb south of Dublin, Ireland, and later graduating from Southampton Solent University with a degree in Yacht Manufacture and Design, her course was set. No wonder she’s recently been picked to be the new Head of Development for the Irish Sailing Foundation.

    After working with companies like Gunboat that, at the time, built high tech, high performance sail boats in South Africa, her unique ability to adapt, communicate and think on her feet made her popular with high net worth yacht buyers. And guiding billionaires through the complex (and expensive) process of building high-tech, carbon fiber racing and cruising yachts provided the perfect training for her next mission—helping a previous client of Gunboat, Lloyd Thornburg, realize his lofty ambitions to break multiple world sailing records.




    Lloyd Thornburg's Phaedo3 lit up the offshore racing circuit RACHEL FALLON-LANGDON


    Soon, Fallon-Langdon was managing Thornburg’s Team Phaedo, which started with his original Gunboat 66, and then added a seventy foot trimaran which they called Phaedo³ and a fast 40 monohull called FOMO. During the next four years Team Phaedo broke 10 World records and won over 40 international race and regattas. In fact most of the records remain unbeaten by others and include ocean crossings and shorter sprints.

    And if managing Team Phaedo wasn’t dramatic enough. She and her husband Richard Langdon’s quick action may have actually saved lives when George David’s maxi-yacht Rambler 100 capsized off the Irish coast during the 2011 Fastnet Race. At the time, they were set up to get the ultimate shot of Phaedo³ rounding the rock and and consequently they were the only boat in the area.
    Soon, Fallon-Langdon was managing Thornburg’s Team Phaedo, which started with his original Gunboat 66, and then added a seventy foot trimaran which they called Phaedo³ and a fast 40 monohull called FOMO. During the next four years Team Phaedo broke 10 World records and won over 40 international race and regattas. In fact most of the records remain unbeaten by others and include ocean crossings and shorter sprints.

    And if managing Team Phaedo wasn’t dramatic enough. She and her husband Richard Langdon’s quick action may have actually saved lives when George David’s maxi-yacht Rambler 100 capsized off the Irish coast during the 2011 Fastnet Race. At the time, they were set up to get the ultimate shot of Phaedo³ rounding the rock and and consequently they were the only boat in the area.


    Rachel Fallon-Langdon (kneeling over sailor) was the first on the scene when George David, his wife Wendy, and three other sailors were pulled our of the Irish Sea after his yacht Rambler 100 capsized during the 2011 Fastnet Race. RICHARD LANGDON


    “It was just by the Fastnet rock where Rambler 100 capsized,” she recalls. “Most of the the crew had managed to scramble onto the hull, but five went missing, including George and his wife Wendy. The weather was horrible.

    “We were the only boat in the area so we started doing a search pattern to look for the missing crew. After three hours we managed to pull George David, his wife Wendy, and three other crew aboard our chartered dive boat. Wendy needed immediate medical attention as hyperthermia had set in. The life boat sent a helicopter to us so she could get straight to the hospital. George and the rest of the crew went back to shore with with us on the dive boat. Unreal.



    The Ker 50 Magic Glove from Dublin, Ireland that raced in the 2007 Key West Race Week is one of many yachts that Irish Sailing Federation Chairman Colm Barrington owned and raced. GETTY IMAGE

    Once the adrenaline subsided from that adventure and Thornburg’s thirst for record breaking urge was satisfied, she then jumped into another project that involved a high net worth client and a high-performance sailing yacht. This time, the high net worth client was the billionaire financier Donald Sussman. And the yacht was the Eagle Class 53 catamaran built by Fast Forward Composites

    It was while she was working for Sussman and Fast Forward Composites, and before our world was rocked by the coronavirus crisis, that I caught up with Rachel at Home House, her private club in London. We enjoyed a very British afternoon tea with her photographer husband Richard Langdon and a long lasting sponsor from Bolle that I learned about her new role.




    Rachel Fallon-Langdon has worn many hats (and outfits) during her career spent working with many o f the world's billionaire yachtsmen. photographed in (in the tub) at London's Home House. RICHARD LANGDON

    “We are delighted Rachel has joined us at the Irish Sailing Foundation.,” says global aviation magnate, and Irish Sailing Federation Chairman, Colm Barrington. “Rachel brings a wide range of experience and contacts in sailing. She has demonstrated her abilities in her very successful career to date and her knowledge and skills align perfectly with the goals of the Irish Sailing Foundation. We are looking forward to a successful future with Rachel which will be to the benefit of high performance sailing in Ireland.”

    Now she's bringing all of the energy, creativity and gusto she used to help her HNW clients and world class sailors build boats and break records to help her beloved Irish Sailing Foundation get the funding it needs to be leaders at future world-class events and the Olympics.

    Because no one knows more how important funding is to a successful sailing campaign than Rachel Fallon-Langdon.

    And no one speaks "billionaire" or “sailor” for that matter better than she does either.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Rachel Langdon: The Billionaire Whisperer started by Photoboy View original post
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