An Olympic dream: Appling brothers make a name for themselves in competitive sailing

Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2019
News 12 This Morning

APPLING, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- Two teenage brothers from our area are making a name for themselves in a unique way -- sailing competitively.

The Bowen brothers travel the country competing in races, but their home base is the Augusta Sailing Club. It's been four years since Mike and Nate Bowen decided to start sailing.

"We're both avid readers. We love to read and we stumbled upon C.S. Forester's 'Hormbler' series about the Naval Officer in the British Navy. Well, we got curious about sailing because there was a lot of sailing of course."

In search of a place to get started, they came across the club.

"[We] went to the sailing camp, and scared ourselves silly after the first week we didn't go back."

One year later, they tried again.

"The second year we managed to think ourselves back into it, talk ourselves back into it, so we went again and had an absolute blast."

For the last year and a half now the pair has been traveling the country for races.

"We love the challenges, we have to exercise our problem-solving, our communication, or teamship. We have to exercise all of those factors to win."

When they're sailing, they each have their own job -- Nate is the helmsman, while Mike is the crew.

Together they've won first place at 5 races, and finished in the top 10 at 10 other races.

"Our parents, we couldn't have done it without them, they get us everywhere we need to go and also we'd like to extend thanks to the Lord because none of this would be possible without him."

If there's one thing they've learned, it's to never give up.

"Keep pushing, when you're out there in the cold, or you're sweating, or freezing, whatever just keep pushing."

At 17 and 15, these brothers are inspiring others to chase their dreams -- as they do the same on the water.

"Definitely Olympics somewhere in the future."

Mike and Nate will compete in a race this weekend in St. Petersburg, Florida. The following weekend they will participate in an Olympic clinic, another step towards competing in the Olympics one day.

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