The Fort To Battery Race Takes Over Charleston

The Fort To Battery Race Takes Over Charleston

Fast is the new future.
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The final horn goes off, and hundreds of flying objects seem to lift off the water in a sprint for Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor. No, it’s not science fiction; it’s Tim Fitzgerald’s vision come to life. Four years ago, Tim moved to Charleston, SC from Kansas, left his snow shovel behind in search of a stronger connection to the sport of sailing. Fitzgerald has an impressive resume under his belt, he has made a name for himself sailing keelboats, as well as in the Thistle, Lightning, Laser and Sunfish classes, to name a few. Tim stood on the end of a dock looking out towards the Cooper River bridge and made a bet with a few friends that he couldn't make it to the bridge in 15 minutes. With this handshake, the concept for the Fort to Battery are was born.

As the current owner of a Hobie 20, and an avid kiteboarder and foilboarder, Tim believed that an adrenaline-fueled drag race in catamarans and other “flying” water-craft could bring the crowd. The Fort to Battery married the excitement of competitive sailing to the large tourism trade in Charleston. Each year competitors from all over the country pack their cars full of kites, boards, and gear and load their boats on trailers and set out for Charleston, with one mission in mind: to go fast.

While four miles in only five minutes, 52 seconds may seem like something only achievable by airplane... Foilboarder Zack Marks proved otherwise in 2016, setting the course record. Boats with top speeds under 20 mph need not apply, the race is a sight to behold, competitors, ages ranging from youth to 70+, scream downwind, dodging in and out of catamarans and avoiding each other, hundreds of spectators line the battery and parks shoreline of James Island, while helicopters hover overhead in attempt to capture the whole thing. It’s unlike anything the sailing world has seen, chaos and action. 2009 Rolex Yachtsman of the Year, Bora Gulari, took the gold at the first race, saying ”I love events like this that are a bit different from our regular racing and have an element of chance and huge amount of fun to them.”

Fitzgerald hopes that the Fort to Battery will inspire more people, especially kids, to pick up the sport of sailing, and realize that the potential for racing goes far beyond a few laps around the race course. Fort to Battery 2017 will take place on April 29th, at approximately two p.m.. The race can be watched from Sunrise Park on James Island and seen from The Battery in downtownCharleston. The race will be live streamed at sailinganarchy.com.

Cover Image Credit: Fort to Battery

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To The Coach Who Ruined The Game For Me

We can't blame you completely, but no one has ever stood up to you before.
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I know you never gave it a second thought, the idea that you're the reason I and many others, never went any farther in our athletic careers.

I know you didn’t sincerely care about our mental health, as long as we were physically healthy and our bodies were working enough to play. It’s obvious your calling wasn’t coaching and you weren’t meant to work with young adults, some who look to you as a parent figure or a confidant.

I also know that if we were to express our concerns about the empty feeling we began to feel when we stepped onto the court, you wouldn’t have taken the conversation seriously because it wasn’t your problem.

I know we can't blame you completely, no one has ever stood up to you before. No one said anything when girls would spend their time in the locker room crying because of something that was said or when half the team considered quitting because it was just too much.

We can't get mad at the obvious favoritism because that’s how sports are played.

Politics plays a huge role and if you want playing time, you have to know who to befriend. We CAN get mad at the obvious mistreatment, the empty threats, the verbal abuse, “it's not what you say, its how you say it.”

We can get mad because a sport that we loved so deeply and had such passion for, was taken away from us single-handedly by an adult who does not care. I know a paycheck meant more to you than our wellbeing, and I know in a few years you probably won’t even remember who we are, but we will always remember.

We will remember how excited we used to get on game days and how passionate we were when we played. How we wanted to continue on with our athletic careers to the next level when playing was actually fun. We will also always remember the sly remarks, the obvious dislike from the one person who was supposed to support and encourage us.

We will always remember the day things began to change and our love for the game started to fade.

I hope that one day, for the sake of the young athletes who still have a passion for what they do, you change.

I hope those same athletes walk into practice excited for the day, to get better and improve, instead of walking in with anxiety and worrying about how much trouble they would get into that day. I hope those athletes play their game and don’t hold back when doing it, instead of playing safe, too afraid to get pulled and benched the rest of the season.

I hope they form an incredible bond with you, the kind of bond they tell their future children about, “That’s the coach who made a difference for me when I was growing up, she’s the reason I continued to play.”

I don’t blame you for everything that happened, we all made choices. I just hope that one day, you realize that what you're doing isn’t working. I hope you realize that before any more athletes get to the point of hating the game they once loved.

To the coach that ruined the game for me, I hope you change.

Cover Image Credit: Author's photo

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The University of Alabama Has Tim Tebow On Their Bad Side And Here's Why

Why would you want to be on someone's bad side?

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Whether I know you personally or just happen to watch you on television or read something about you, if you have wronged me or mine, there is no coming back. Last week, Tim Tebow crossed the line, and I'm calling him out for it.

Alabama and football are synonymous. Gameday is sacred here, and when you look in the stands before kickoff, it's a wall of crimson that greets you. Recently, come halftime, some of the stands are not overflowing the way they once were, and Coach Nick Saban stated in a recent press conference his disappointment in the student section during the past several home football games held in Bryant-Denny. Saban said, "There's got to be a spirit that makes it special to play here because that's what makes it special to be here." His heart is in the right place, and Saban has standing. He is one of us. However, Tim Tebow felt he needed to chime in, as his opinion mattered, and he overstepped into the crimson territory.

Tebow didn't just side with Saban, he went on to insult the Crimson Tide by saying how "entitled" Alabama fans are, and that's where it started to get ugly. The SEC sportscaster said "Listen, as a student, you've done nothing to win all these titles, OK? You spend a little bit of your daddy's money to show up at a game and to go to school there. You say you're the best fans in college football. Well, you need to show up."

While some might recognize Tebow as a former NFL player, or recognize him as the pretty face of the SEC Network, or even know him as the less than suitable replacement for Neil Patrick Harris on Disney's Christmas Day Parade, I'm sorry to say, Tim Tebow, you are a washed up Heisman winner and National Championship Quarterback from almost a decade ago. Alabama students are diehard fans, but you can't hate a student body for leaving when they already know the outcome. We might expect the titles and the championships, just like the university expects the best from its students, we expect the best from our team, and we love them for it.

So Mr. Tebow, when you really think about it, if it wasn't for our "daddy's" money pouring into the university in the first place, there wouldn't be a stepping stone for our incredible football team. The football program generates a lot of money for the university, but so do the students. The student body isn't acting entitled, we are just being human because we are frustrated with the opposing teams, and we become bored out of our minds. I'm sorry if I don't want to stay for the second half of the game baking in the sweltering hot upper bowl at noon when the score is 50-0. It is unrealistic.

There are so many reasons why Alabama students don't want to stay for the entire game, but probably the most significant is most teams in the SEC stink. Yes, I said it, because it is true. Growing up in an area and in a family who has roots in the BIG TEN, I can see the difference. While all the teams aren't the best up North, at least there is some competition on a weekly basis. Every single game this season at Alabama has been a blowout, which is great because we all want a winning team. However, the best part of football games is being on the edge of your seat and not knowing who is going to win. Lafayette wasn't cutting it, neither was Arkansas. Look at games like Penn State versus Ohio State. The score was so close, it made fans want to stay. Trust me, I want to stay. I love football, but a mercy is a mercy, and who wants to stay for a bloodbath?

Remember Tebow, Saban is one of us, so he can comment. You are not. Mr. Tebow, you are not a member of the Crimson Tide. You could have been a part of our Family, but you chose to wear Florida's jersey over Alabama's, so until you are one of us, keep your snide, insulting, and condescending comments to yourself. Roll Tide!

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