Boat Flips During Jersey Outlaws Garvey Racing Off Tuckerton Beach

By Pat Johnson | Aug 21, 2019
Photo by: Chris Chebowaski During Sunday’s race off Tuckerton Beach, racing garvey Extreme flipped, sending driver Tony Yaglio Jr. and co-pilot Chris Chadwick into the drink. Neither man was seriously hurt.

Tuckerton Beach — The fifth race in the Jersey Outlaws garvey racing series saw the boat Extreme driven by Tony Yagiello Jr. and co-pilot Cory Chadwick flip and do a barrel roll after the first lap off Tuckerton Beach on Sunday, Aug. 18, said racing enthusiast Paul Hulse.

“He was going into the turn and I heard the crowd gasp and he barrel-rolled it. Both driver and rider were ejected from their boat and the boat was airborne. The guys were OK with just bumps and bruises.”

The race, at the end of South Green Street, was the fifth in the seven-race season.

“Berkeley Search and Rescue immediately responded and attended to the rider and driver. Both were put in water stretchers and taken to shore to be attended by Tuckerton Fire Department’s EMS. Both men were able to walk away,” said Hulse. “That is the good part – walking away.”

The boat vying for the lead, Here We Go Again, maintained its lane and the boat Snoopy, driven by a father and son team from Delaware, slowed to avoid a collision.

“Everyone in the boats is very alert,” said Hulse. “The Berkeley Dive Team is on the water for the entire day, and if ever there is a spill, they go right to them. They are very compassionate. The Tuckerton EMTs also did a great job, checked them out right away, sat them down to relax.” Racing was over for the day for Yagiello and Chadwick.

Hulse said Sunday’s race was notable for another reason. His own boat, the Why Me Lord, made its 2019 debut after an absence of seven years. Hulse had purchased it 3½ years ago from owner Butch Muschanic. “Butch had raced it from 1983 until 1997 and allowed me to keep the name because I’m a street evangelist,” said Hulse. “I bought it for $750 and started working on it. It was pretty destroyed, but we got it put together.

“That’s what I like about garvey racing, the heritage of it. This year, everyone was lending motors to each other. We all wanted to go out and put on a great show. There is great camaraderie. I know I’m gushing, but we’ll do anything to keep it going.”

Garvey racing has a rich history in the Barnegat Bay area. The garvey is a traditional wooden workboat for baymen, mostly clammers. Clammers initially started racing back to the shore to be first to sell their clams at the clam houses.

In 1953, community-minded baymen started a July 4 race to raise money for local fire companies.

Over the years the fiberglass speed garvey was developed. There are no purses or prize money; the owners race for the joy of it and the events are always free to spectators.

Hulse was instrumental in getting the Jersey Outlaw Racing Association back in the water after a three-year hiatus. The group had a difficult time getting insurance coverage.

There are four classes of racers that compete in five-lap races: three are 350 stock classes, one is a 358 stock class and the fourth class is for racing skiffs, if they show up, said Hulse. “Since we haven’t had races until this year, they may have lost interest.”

The 350 stock (sized engine) can go 60 to 70 mph on the water; the 358 can go 70 to 80 mph. The skiffs are clocked at 65 to 80 mph. “They go fast,” said Hulse.

And the contestants may surprise you. Jerry and Dave Macky from Delaware are a father and son team. Jerry is in his 70s and Dave is in his 40s.

Hulse is a minister ordained in 2011 through Tomoka Church in Florida and has worked as an advocate for the homeless in Ocean County for five years. “Two years ago I started a code blue shelter at a church and then Toms River gave us a building in Riverwood Park.” His nonprofit Just Believe is in the process of getting its 501(c)(3) nonprofit status.

“I’m affiliated with 40 churches in Ocean County, helping to house people in motels and rentals and finding permanent housing,” he said.

“My boat, Why Me Lord, fits me.”

This past Sunday as he took her through her paces, his 17-year-old son was the flagger. “I got a little emotional,” he said.

The next race is on Sunday, Sept. 1 at the Parkertown Docks in Little Egg Harbor and the last race for the championship is scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 15. The races start at noon depending on the weather and last about three hours. Food and ice cream vendors are on site. The races are free but purchasing 50/50s supports the Berkeley Search and Rescue Dive Team.

Pleasure boats can watch from a safe distance.

— Pat Johnson

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