2019 Day 20: Ring a bell, drink a beer, and tell some stories.

24 Hour Fact Sheet
Clip of the Day
photo: Team Solveig by Taylor Bayly

It was only yesterday that our long awaited chance to learn how to pronounce Team Solveig’s name finally arrived; just forget the ‘G’ and finish with a wispy exhalation (Soul-veyyyy). Team Solveig pulled into the marina in fine, double-handed synchronicity, declared themselves the true winner, and explained away the absence of teams on the tracker as yet another historic R2AK tracker blunder. Their reality was only slightly frustrated by the appearance of Team Backwards AF slowly walking down the dock.

Solveig: We didn’t beat you?

Backwards AF: [awkward silence]

Solveig: But we were close?

Backwards AF: We came in two days ago.

In today’s Clip of the Day our video team puts the mic to the duo of Backwards AF and lets Leigh and Dameon tell their side of the story. Not only are they our heroes, but Team Solveig declared Backwards AF their heroes as well.

Team Wee Free Men camped only 6 miles from the finish line rather than row to a midnight glory, because, “The current was running at 2 knots and we only had two knots of rowing left in us.” With dawn, then, they rowed in to Thomas Basin and the set the world record of Fastest Last Place in R2AK history.

“We decided we wanted to catch up to Solveig so Andrew came up with a 30 hour plan to make it happen.”

“We were doing 5 knots, sailing downwind, when we came up with it, so it made perfect sense.”

At the finish line, reality is rarely more than a footnote between standings and a 6-pack of hard earned drink, where tales of little daily victories stitch together the story running between Port Townsend and Ketchikan. In today’s podcast, the Boldly Went team push themselves into the past and re-enter the events at the Ketchikan Yacht Club and The Alaska Fish House to pull tales from the mouths of recovering racers who talked about family, fixing, and what “Welcome to Done” really means.

The final finisher for 2019 has crossed the line, rang the bell, and claimed to have no idea what they are doing now or how they are getting the boat home. It’s a lot to take in, for them and for us⁠—seeing the bell silent for another year, the tracker an empty desolate blue, blue and gray, and racers milling in the streets numbly until the next adventure steals their gaze. It’s a lot to digest.

You’ll find us tomorrow, in your email and on your feeds, as we plumb one last time into the stories of teams lost and won; the elusive sense of closure we seek perhaps only one story away.

The Daily Fix by Boldly Went

24 Hour Fact Sheet

Griffin Passage somewhere in British Columbia

  • Team Solveig came streaming in fresh as daisies after a fine night’s sleep only a handful of miles from the finish line.
  • Grim Sweeper: lost in the passes and inlets of the BC coast never to sweep a team in 2019. The loaner Seagull outboard from Fisheries Supply going unused for another year.
  • 2019: Shortest Race to Alaska ever conducted
  • Wee Free Men: Fastest last place team in R2AK history
  • Solveig: first team to navigate waters non-navigable at most tides – Griffin Passage
  • 35: Pounds of fish the McGuffin Brothers ate out of tiny tin cans during the races
  • 12: Minimum number of times Greg of Team Trickster cried, or was reporting crying, in joy during the first 24 hours after finishing
  • 3: Mentions from Stina that food was her only desire after landing in Ketchikan.
  • 8: People who piled into a boat last night in hope of catching a glimpse of Wee Free Men
  • 1: dog who also came in hopes of being fed

Clip of the Day