The Optimist Polar Series was due to kick off on Sunday 20th November at Broadmeadows, hosted by MYC.
The majority of the entrants were from HYC and it was obvious to all travelling to Malahide that there was going to be a lack of wind.
On reaching the Broadmeadows estuary, we saw what appeared to be ripples on the water caused by light winds - yet the flags were completely slack. Then the penny dropped, we were ice-bound. A 'relatively' thick layer of ice was present throughout the centre of the lake.
At 1045, the PRO, Neil Murphy along with MYC Commodore, John Duggan, took an 'ice-breaker' vessel out to examine the frozen race area and the report was 4mm ice with the launch unable to break through it even on full-power. Evidence of the ice thickness was brought back for examination by the young competitors who were having fun in the sunny conditions anyway.
A flooding tide was noticed at noon and a thaw was evident. The PRO planned a course between the ice-floes but the wind was almost non-existent. Bob Sugrue was sent out in a Topaz to see if there was sufficient wind to start a race but alas his only progress was influenced by the tide.
However, all was not lost. Gourmet caterer to Optimists, Aideen Keenan, served home-made chicken & vegatable soup along with hot-dogs to all. Although the racing was lost, everyone had a sociable morning and enjoyed the fresh air.
The Optimist Polar Series continues in Malahide on Sunday 4 Dec and those who have not yet entered are still welcome to do so on the morning. Better bring your skates as well!
NOR details on www.iodai.com
The Optimist Arctic Series will follow early in the new year.