MONDAY, AUGUST 15, 2011 - With about 10 days of down time between the East Divisional Championships in Huntington and this weekend's A Roar of Thunder Midwest Regional Championships in Aurora, Indiana, most teams probably were happy to have a breather. But things on the Herd Racing front have been anything but slow the past couple of weeks.
In fact, they have been quite busy. The show boat spent the week of the Huntington race traveling around the city to a car lot for three days and then to Schooner's Waterfront Grille for a three-day stay. Since that time it has been back to the river again, this time at Harris Riverfront Park in downtown Huntington, where Crew Chief Jeramey Wentz opened the boat up to the hundreds of kids who attended the four-day Rib and Music Fest 2011 at the park last Thursday-Sunday.
Meanwhile, the Formula 3 Jesus boat spent last night a free community cookout sponsored by the 26th Street Baptist Church in Huntington where the team's two mascots Humble Bumble the Christian Bee and Thunder the Water Buffalo helped entertain the many kids in attendance at the Back to School bash portion of the evening.
I know a lot of my fellow racers think that my performance in the races could probably be a little better if our team concentrated more on racing and quit worrying about everything else we do. Well my response to that is pretty simple. You're exactly right. But, some of us receive joy from personal achievement and some of us get it from giving of ourselves to others. I am sure winning a tunnel boat race is a real joy, one that I hope to experience some day. But real joy to me and our team is seeing a kid's excitement when they sit in one of the boats or sit on the lap of a life-sized bee or hug a large hairy buffalo. Taking time for a kid who may not get any attention at home provides much more joy to me than winning any race ever will. That may sound crazy to some people, but making a positive impression on someone who needs any positive they can get in their lives ranks much higher on my 'to do' list than dominating a boat race. Maybe someday if Herd Racing gets a taste of success our priorities may change to where racing is the most important thing we do. Let me know if you see that happening so I can get out before it's too late.
Anyway, back in the shop things are progressing. Roger LeGrand and myself spent Saturday morning and this evening getting the Formula 2 boat back in shape. We had a seam where to top deck and hull join open up during the final at Huntington and we took on a bunch of water. We have done our best to remedy that problem and hope it holds for a couple more weekends until we can turn the boat over this winter to make a more permanent fix.
And, the F-3 boat is ready for the new LaBanco powerhead. We are planning to put it on Wednesday night after church and hope to break it in Friday afternoon and Saturday morning at Aurora, just in time to try it out on my favorite race course, the D-shaped oval in front of Lesko Park in downtown Aurora!