Twins Brian and Ben Goldberg started sailing when they were five.
"We used to compete against each other when we were younger. Now we race together,'' Brian says.
"We argue more , but fight less," Ben adds.
Now 16 and members of North Cape Yacht Club, they spend almost every day practicing on Lake Erie to improve their racing skills.
The long days spent hiking out for hours and wrestling with sails in heavy weather require plenty of strength and endurance, but the twins don't hang out at the gym.
"Sailing is our workout," Brian said. "Our coaches drive us hard."
"Sailing is more a sport for personal benefit," he said. "Conditions are different every time you go out and you learn something different every time.
"In basketball or football, you learn to do something and then you just go out and do it."
All their hard work was amply rewarded last weekend at Cleveland's Edgewater Yacht Club, where the twins clinched the top trophies for the high performance 420 class in the 2005 Inter-Lake Yachting Association Traveler Series
Brian was the top skipper and Ben won the crew award.
Second-place awards went to Andy Gunkler, skipper, and Kyle Gladieux, crew, of North Cape.
The final regatta also decided the Laser title, which was successfully defended by the 2004 champion, Ryan Lashaway, also from North Cape.
Jolly Roger Sailing Club skipper Kevin Bradley dominated the best 6 of 9-race Thistle series. His crew Kayleigh White, of Jolly Roger, and Scott Doller, of Sandusky Sailing Club, carried off the class crew awards
All except Doller are active in the junior sailing program at North Cape Yacht Club, where they are coached by Nick Turney, Jesse Shedden and Steve Frazier.
About 150 sailors from Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania participate in the 10-regatta series, a moveable feast of competition that rotates among 10 host clubs.
"Kids in the sport of competitive sailing spend almost as much time on the road as they do on the water," said Jill Goldberg, the twins' mother. Their father, Gary, is North Cape's junior activities chairman.
"If you follow your children around from club to club, you are gone every weekend. We haven't raced our own boat in the last 10 years," she said.
"Our year starts the last weekend in March when high school sailing starts and ends with the high school sailing season in November.
"Summers we drive back and forth to regattas that are part of the Traveler Series and stay there to support our children.
"One week it's Mentor - the next week, it's Erie,''she said.
Camaraderie is as important as competition to keeping the young sailors involved, according to the series chairman.
"The older kids have raced against each other since 1998," Gunkler said. "And some of their parents raced against each other as kids."
Kayleigh White probably would agree.
"It's really the people who keep us coming back," she says. "The Thistle fleet is really close.We love the people."
Whether you're into racing, cruising, or just socializing at the dock, Labor Day weekend offers a wide range of activities.
North Cape's Dedication Day Race to Port Clinton tomorrow, marks the start of fall racing for sailors. Starting time is 9 a.m.
Skippers may register at the club between 7:30-9 p.m. today.
The race is a feeder for the Green Island Race, slated at Port ClintonYacht Club on Sunday. Classes in the Green Island regatta will include Tartan Tens and multihulls, sa well as cruising auxiliaries. There also is a two-day event for Beach Cats that starts tomorrow.
Many area clubs have planned special events to usher in the season. Highlights include Toledo Sailing Club's annual Lobster Fest, today through Sunday, and the Commodore's Reception at Indian Hill Boat Club, tomorrow.
Toledo Power Squadron members will enjoy a Labor Day Cruise to Cedar Point Marina today through Monday.
The Toledo Power Squadron will offer a "Boat Smart" course in Perrysburg, starting Sept. 9. Classes will be at the 577 Foundation Building from 7 to 9:30 p.m. through Sept. 30.
The fee is $30, $15 for a second person sharing the textbook