“I liken it to playing golf,” said Cogar. “Strength does not hurt, but timing and technique is more important.”
Cogar’s father made the series finals when he was 60 years old and, in his 80s, still competes in other timber sports competitions. Cogar said making the finals at 60 himself is a personal goal.
“I’ll be giving these young boys fits for a long time,” he said.
In addition to his father, both Cogar’s wife and two daughters compete in timber sports, and the family has been involved in lumberjack competitions for four generations. Cogar said that 20 members of the family compete, and four will be in the Stihl series this year.
Cogar works as a civil defense trial lawyer. He said that his profession is mentally draining, and that training helps give him a release.
“There’s nothing more exhilarating and satisfying then going over to my barn and beating … a piece of wood that can’t hit me back,” he said.
Another thing that Cogar attributes his success to is the support of his wife, who he said arranged for a training facility to be built for him and has supported him in his efforts to train and compete.
“She enabled me to become better,” he said.
The ability to devote more time to training is one of the reasons Cogar believes he has been able to perform so well in recent years.
“It’s nothing for me to cut ten logs a (training) session,” said Cogar, compared to when he would cut two or three logs a session when he was in his 20s. “I’m training more than I used to because I have the ability to do it.”
The Cooperstown tournament is also going to be a bit of a full circle experience for Cogar. He said that after his first wood chopping competition, which he participated in at the age of 12 in upstate New York, his father took him to Cooperstown to see the National Baseball Hall of Fame.