NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (NNS) -- Two Sailors from the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), the "Gold Eagle," were selected Nov. 10 to compete in the 2008 all-military boxing championship to be held in February 2008 at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio.
Both Gold Eagle Sailors, Damage Controlman Fireman Tom Dooley and Machinery Repairman Fireman Michael Hal, began boxing as teenagers and have worked on honing their fighting skills ever since.
"I want to sharpen my technique in the ring, so I've really intensified my training and conditioning," said Hal. "I plan to push myself physically and mentally, so I'm ready for my competition when I get to Lackland."
Both Sailors credit their experiences in the Navy for their mental toughness in the ring. Additionally, they both say serving in the Navy has enabled them to come closer to their dream of boxing professionally one day.
"I want my performance to reflect positively on the opportunities the Navy has given me to train as a boxer," said Dooley. "More importantly, I want to show the other branches how much talent the Navy has in its corner."
The athletes will attend the Navy's training camp at Port Hueneme, Calif. for eight weeks to prepare for the Armed Forces Championship. While Hal and Dooley agree their training and preparations will be long and arduous, both Sailors are looking forward to the challenge.
"Nothing about our training will be easy," said Hal. "But I'm confident that both of us will do well, because we both have the drive and discipline to succeed."
Carl Vinson is currently undergoing its scheduled refueling complex overhaul (RCOH) at Northrop Grumman Newport News shipyard.
For more news from USS Carl Vinson, visit www.news.navy.mil/local/cvn70/.