Well, I made it through another year of Never Quit, an event I really enjoy. I competed in the Trident Solo, which includes a 5K Run, followed by a 500 Meter open ocean swim, followed by a 1,500 Meter surfboard paddle. It was a blast, as usual, and I met both of my personal goals- bettering last year’s time, and finishing in under an hour, despite a bum knee, which prevented me from doing any kind of serious prep work this year.
1st Place Sports results showed me as coming in third place in my age group, although they got that wrong. They showed my age as 49, placing me in the 45-49 age group. Truth be told, I turned 50 on May 1st, 30 days prior to the competition, which would have put me in 50-54 age group, where I actually would have placed 5th among men. But hey, happy to take third against the younger guys! : ) If you live in, or near Northeast Florida and have never participated in Never Quit, I encourage you to give it a go. There are all kinds of events and activities to participate in. I think it’s the best sporting event in our area, personally, but then I love the beach and the ocean.
The event is put on the Petroni family of Atlantic Beach, led by Erik Petroni (Some may recognize the Petroni name. Karina Petroni is a successful young pro surfer from the area). The event celebrates the life and spirit of Erik and Karina’s father, Capt. Gerard Petroni, who was a great patriot, athlete, waterman, Christian and family man. Capt. Petroni suffered a massive stroke in 2006 and fought valiantly to recover before eventually passing in 2009. During one of the most critical moments of his recovery, while unable to walk, eat or speak, his family handed him a piece of paper and asked him if he could write one thing on the paper, what would it be? He scribbled the words, “Never Quit”. Today the event celebrates the values that Capt. Petroni held dear- healthy living, love of family and friends and a relentless “Never Quit” approach to life. You can learn more about the event and Capt. Petroni’s amazing life in this fantastic video.