R.D. Kissling, boat 38, pushes off the bank of the Guadalupe River at a checkpoint just outside of Cuero on Sunday after meeting with team captain Terry Alford for water and momentary rest.
As of Sunday, June 10, 2012
For live updates
For live updates
To get a live update of where Texas Water Safari participants are on the river, go to texaswatersafari.org.
See more photos from the first two days of the Texas Water Safari.
CUERO - The second day of the Texas Water Safari is usually when the serious paddlers were segregated from everyone else.
This was indeed the case Sunday as just 15 paddlers made it to Riverside Park in Victoria by 9:30 p.m. Sunday.
Nearly 60 paddlers were beyond Cuero, approximately 160 miles into the race, by Sunday evening at 10 p.m.
Three-time reigning champions, Boat No. 314 with Amado Cruz, Daniel Cruz, Sam Ritchie, William Russell, Andrew Soles and Andrew Stephens, set a blistering pace that was doesn't look like it's going to be challenged.
They made it to the Victoria checkpoint at 12:15 p.m. Sunday afternoon, a full two hours ahead of their closest competition.
By Sunday evening, 26 of the 135 boats that entered the Texas Water Safari had left the race.
There were varying reasons for their departure: Some chose to drop out once they reached a checkpoint, while others didn't make one of the checkpoints in time, a third group reached a checkpoint only to realize their boat was leaking.
Mollie Binion's boat No. 444 broke in half as she approached the Palmetto Bridge and Park about 20 river miles from Gonzales. The 29 year-old Binion was uninjured, according to race officials.
Former Victoria resident Tim Anglin realized he couldn't go any further once he reached the Thomaston Bridge, 178 miles into the race.
"It was rough from the start," said the 46-year-old Anglin, who now lives in Plano. "I started back in the field. I don't consider myself a technical paddler and the upper river took its toll on me."
Anglin left the race because after a boat separation just north of Cuero spooked him out of the race. Before this year, he finished each of his six trips down the San Marcos and Guadalupe rivers.
Another boater to call it quits Sunday was Justin Brozozowske in Boat No. 1966. The Sunset resident has been canoeing for less than two years, but after watching the race last year with his daughter, Emily, he decided to enter.
Though Brozozowske told his daughter he nearly sliced his finger early in the race, he persevered for almost 100 miles before throwing in the towel.
"Last time I saw him, he was running on adrenaline and loving it," said Emily Brozozowske, whose grandparents live in Victoria, on Saturday. "The best part is seeing him in the canoe doing it and he's in his 40s."
Nearly a quarter of the 267 participants are in their 40s. The third boat, No. 17, and fifth, No. 247, boat to make the Victoria checkpoint had paddlers in their 40s.
Regardless of age, the second day of the Texas Water Safari was one where the crowds thinned and for long stretches it just a paddler and their boat.
"I had great support on the banks," Anglin said about his retirement. "There was nothing (my team captain Michael Joiner) could have done to change the outcome. It was all me."