Middletown, Pa. -- On a grassy lawn outside of Xfinity Live in the Wells Fargo complex, Philadelphia, teams relayed through burpees, hula hooping, pushups, kettlebell drag, box jumping and other challenges May 8, 2018.
Receiving last minute notification, Air Force Staff Sgt. Kenneth Rivera-Ithier, 193rd Special Operations Security Forces Squadron security forces specialist, was tasked to put a 5-man team together. This team was to represent the Pennsylvania Air National Guard at an inaugural Military and Pit Crew PT Challenge at the third annual NASCAR Philadelphia Takeover.
Four other 193rd SOSFS Airmen joined Rivera-Ithier. Knowing that the Airmen had to be in tip-top physical condition, Rivera-Ithier said he chose Deployed Aircraft Ground Response Element Airmen as well as DAGRE candidates.
Two Xfinity teams, a NASCAR pit crew team, a Pennsylvania Army National Guard team and an active duty Air Force team, competed in the event.
“This seemed like a great opportunity to showcase our wing and the Airmen who represent it,” said Air Force Senior Airman Gregory Ralph, 193rd SOSFS security forces specialist.
The first round consisted of three waves; two teams going head-to-head each wave. With a time of five minutes and eleven seconds, the 193rd SOSFS team was the second fastest team in round one, however, were eliminated because the fastest team per wave moved on. With a time of 4 minutes, 56 seconds, the NASCAR’s pit crew team edged out the security forces Airmen.
“It showed that our team could dominate in a team atmosphere even with no detail or prep time,” said Rivera-Ithier.
“Always Ready, Always There,” words of the official song of the National Guard Bureau, are words that Airmen of the 193rd SOSFS are prepared to live by, no matter the challenge.