During the summer in South Jersey, Friday nights are dedicated to lifeguard races. These are a big deal for my family… My Pop-pop founded one of the races, my dad rowed when he was a lifeguard, and both my brothers have been/are competitors in them.
If it wasn’t for my mom’s birthday surprise, this would’ve been the first summer I didn’t see a single race in, probably, my entire life. And I got to come up for a really awesome one!
My oldest brother has rowed doubles on and off (mostly on) for years. He and his partner, Chuck, had a really awesome season – undefeated! The Friday night I made it was the final race of the season. The championship.
The craziest thing to me – and I didn’t even realize it was a thing until the race was over because my mom was afraid to say it out loud – was this is the only race that my brother has never won.
The surf was rough but that’s how Doc and Chuck prefer it. They row out to their team flag and come back in. One mile total but those are some big heavy boats and the ocean is fighting against you half the time.
It looked like a close race as all the cities started coming in but the Doc and Chuck broke away, caught a wave and rode it in to glory! Final race time was 16:02, with the next boat coming in 18 seconds behind.
I’m a proud sister of my 2 brothers anyway, but this was such an exciting moment for Doc and I’m so glad I could to be there for it. And also really glad I didn’t jinx it, phew!
AND – my brother Shane raced in a 22.5 mile boat chase on Tuesday and they came in 7th of 24 teams. I didn’t get to see this race at all but that’s a long and grueling race – your body hurts, your hands are ripping, you’re hot! I’m super proud of how well Shane did there.