February 11, 2012
It was such a bold and noble statement. And aside from one race in 2010 where the laws of physics came into play, we have held true to it for 10 years. A little bit of snow is one thing. A little bit of cold is one thing. A little bit of wind with some heavy gusts is one thing. All those things put together... okay, add one other thing - we are older and wiser! We have paid our dues - I can cite several examples but this race from 2009 can sum it up nicely. And today was going to be a similar day - if not worse in the fact that it was not going to even reach 30 degrees and the wind gusts in the harbor were approaching 40 knots. All of these things put together along with a predetermined make-up date, lead to our prudent (which, by the way, is NOT synonymous with "wimpy") decision to put this one off until a later date.
For the Shackleton purists out there sitting in the warm and safe confines of cyberland that are shaking their heads in disbelief and disappointment, I offer an excerpt from the out of print first season of race reports in which several (but not all) of us abandoned the race due to the overwhelming conditions - and yes, a complete lack of wind is overwhelming even if it is 60 degrees outside!
"Andre furled up his genoa and said by the present wind conditions and his position, his estimated elapsed time to complete the race was about 22 hours. I simply asked myself, "what would Shackleton do?" I firmly believe if Shackleton had a 9.9 Johnson outboard and was within 30 minutes of firing that thing up and being back at port sipping some brandy, that's what he would do."
And 10 years later, I still believe it! Would he have suited up today and battled the elements? That is open for debate since Sir Shackleton was on a quest to cross the entire Antarctica continent, a feat no one else had done at that time. We, on the other hand have already circumnavigated Hiwassee Island - on more than one occasion - what else is there? So chalk our decision up as resting on our laurels and finally coming to our senses! We will see you at Race 8!
|Race report written by Eric Almlie. ©Copyright 2012. All rights reserved.|