Confessions of an Optimist Sailor - by Millie Irish
I'm just on my way to Weymouth for an Optimist squad camp having achieved my main goal of the season, which was to get selected!
My Dad, Steve Irish, is a world class coach and it is thanks to him that so many Midlands sailors got selected to the Optimist zone and National squads this year - including me :-D
But I have a confession to make - one of the key reasons I wanted to be selected to a squad was because then I would have a different coach to my Dad :lol:
It can be hard to be coached by your Dad on days when you might get out of the wrong side of the bed, while some might think I get special treatment, in fact he makes it harder for me which is annoying! He nags me more because he's my Dad! And I am probably far grumpier with him than I have ever been with a different coach - because I'm a teenager and he's my Dad!!!
Dad is continuing to run our fantastic Midland Optimist Race Training sessions at Draycote Water, MORT for short! And lots of us will be doing those as well as the squads because the coaching is great and that's what helped us all get squad selection in the first place. But I'll be missing the first winter one while I do Intermediate Squad - which I am really looking forward to.
It will be great to see old friends and make new ones and to learn from different coaches. I've packed all my Rooster kit ready to layer up now it is autumn - my Polypro thermals with my Supertherm wetsuit, Thermaflex wetsuit top, Hiking shorts and Aquafleece. And definitely coming with me is my utterly fabulous Mesh Bag! If you don't already have one - why ever not?!!! It's my most-loved bit of kit and way better than leaving stuff sopping wet in a plastic bag or bucket!
- All the water drains out of your kit so it's nearly already dry by the time you unpack it
- There's a drawstring top so you can't lose your kit
- A handy little zipped compartment is ideal for your watch
- A strong loop means you can hang it on a peg so your kit starts drip-drying while you're busy chatting to friends after sailing
- It's easy to carry because it also has straps like a rucksack
- And it's massive!
I also use it on the way to sailing for all the kit I want to wear that day so it's easy to find, and it's super strong - mine still looks brand new and I've used it A LOT!
Whatever you're doing this winter, happy sailing!