Six-man team wins Texas Water Safari (w/video)
June 16, 2014 at 1:16 a.m.
SEADRIFT - Moments after his team crossed the bay into Seadrift, 34-year-old Jeff Glock chomped down on a piece of pizza with a smile on his face.
"It was like every other year, I guess," Glock said about his 11th Texas Water Safari. "(I want to) go do it again."
Glock was on a six-man team that was the first to cross the finish line at Seadrift 3 minutes after 1 a.m. Monday. They missed the 40-hour mark by 3 minutes.
Teammates Andrew Condie, 29; Gaston Jones, 41; Wade Binion, 35; Ian Rolls, 36; and Clay Wyatt, 30, are all safari veterans along with Glock.
Though exhausted, dirty and hungry, all six men still had enough energy to smile for pictures at the finish line.
The wind created a choppiness in the waves as the Texas natives paddled in. They were welcomed by a small crowd of family, friends and safari supporters, including longtime competitor Vance Sherrod and his wife, Sandy.
The Sherrods came down from College Station for the weekend to support their friends in the race. Vance Sherrod is taking a "vacation" this year, he said.
"This year has been different," Sandy Sherrod said. "You never know who will put a boat together."
Rolls, a three-time safari competitor whose teammate died unexpectedly on the course in 2012, was part of Boat No. 150.
"The race went well; we didn't have any major problems or mishaps," Rolls said.
None of the competitors were upset by missing the 40-hour mark. Each were happy with their first-place finish.
"We trained hard all year, and it feels really good for the hard work to pay off," Wyatt said.
Though the team included three previous first-place finishers, Wyatt said they were no "dream team."
"I don't think so - we're all kind of average guys," he said. "We had a pretty good team."
Binion said a six-man team "definitely has its benefits."
"We were able to move smoother, faster," he said.
Sitting in a regular chair with a Shiner beer in his hand, Condie was near sleep soon after their nonstop journey. He said none of the team stopped for sleep.
"It went a lot better than you could ever hope for," he said. "Everything was just really smooth; there were no mishaps. Everyone felt good."
In an event like the safari, which is 260 miles from San Marcos to Seadrift in 100 hours or less, Condie said that a number of things could go wrong.
"It's such a difficult event, and a lot of times, people get sick for a while and are hurting bad. But everybody felt good; everybody was happy. We were joking and laughing the whole way down," Condie said.