Mothie, sportboat, skiff sailor, and occasional softball shortstop Eric Aakhus gets us up to speed on some of the shenanigans happening over in the 50th State. And while you might not be a classic rock or AC/DC fan, we guarantee you that you’ll like this version of the title song that inspired Eric and his team last weekend.
Lahaina Yacht Club wasn’t prepared for the thunderstorm that pummeled the West Coast of Maui this Labor Day weekend. And no – we aren’t talking about yet another hyperbolic hurricane warning. We’re talking about the Oahu Thundercocks!
Many are aware of the downwind race from Lahaina to Waikiki that takes place every Labor Day, but the real battle goes down on the Lahaina softball field between teams from Oahu and Maui. For the last 17 years this game has been dominated by the Maui team, with Oahu taking the prize only once during what was deemed to be a fluke year. 2014 wouldn’t go down the same way.
This year, Oahu came prepared. Armed with 1,000 Thundercock temp tattoos, a battle flag made by the Honolulu Ullman Sails loft, and a mercilessly rowdy crowd, the team saw Lahaina transformed into a scene from Dante’s Peak by Monday morning. The T-Cock entourage spent the days leading up to the game tramp-stamping the town with their logo – everyone from bartenders to the weathered local cougars with expired bolt-ons sported tattoos in places that would make any sailor blush.
Come game time, the Cocks came out swinging and lit up the scoreboard in the first inning. With a visiting crowd that humiliated the local team’s fans, Oahu never looked back, going on to win by a score of 56-3 (or something similarly embarrassing, though no one can apparently remember the final score). Immediately after the game the Cocks celebrated in historic fashion, exchanging contact info with local law enforcement and getting cut off from the Lahaina YC bar by 5pm – something that would never have happened at Kaneohe Yacht Club.
Sometime after dark the party moved to Maui Atomic Tattoo where a couple Thundercocks had to pony up a piece of their soul. Lets just say for these two players, sitting on the rail during a 12 hour race the next day would be a burning reminder of the glory.
In past years the Thundercocks have been known to show up to the field still firing from the night before, full of excuses including exhaustion, lack of practice, and biased local umpires. But this year the difference came in the form of a new Head Coach, Bill Riddle. Bill is a multiple time Softball World Series champion from the 70’s (apparently this is a thing), and a local KYC legend who whipped our boys into winning shape (think Patches O’Houlihan with a sailboat). When asked what was different about the team on that particular Sunday morning Riddle replied, “We’re not that drunk…”
*Let it be known that the Lahaina YC team is not built from sailors, but adult softball league Cat 3 from a nearby Maui league. The winning Thundercocks are just a bunch of degenerate yachties (and definite Cat 1 softball players) from Kaneohe YC. As any local (or America’s Cup competitor -ed] will tell you, ya can’t spell ‘Dynasty’ without ‘Nasty’!