TL;DR: French toast, fries, bread, kisses, exits, ticklers, foreign legion, and lesser-known salad dressings
First off, France. This team is from France. Like Edith Piaf, croissants, ennui, and the same-named foreign legion, toast, fries, bread, kisses, exits, ticklers, and lesser-known salad dressing. When Team Loustic Supersonic’s Frenchifried application voyaged halfway across the world and through linguistic divides to slide across our virtual desk, we knew exactly what to do. We donned our beret, grabbed a baguette, bottle of Bordeaux, dusted off our two non-consecutive semesters of high school french, and settled in. From reading their application and watching the video evidence of some of their recent exploits, here’s what we know:
- Despite what we n’oublié-d from French class, there was surprisingly little discussion about their favorite color.
- Likewise, there was very little about the location of the library.
- Also, we have no idea about the date of their birthday or if they joué’d the tennis.
It’s frustrating because it’s like they never attended high school French class. Sad really; their native language and they barely know the basics.
Conjugating their past-participles (or whatever) in a way that we can entendre, here’s what we know:
They are buying a Santana 20, sight-unseen in Portland, flying here on June 4th, R2AK on June 13. Pas de problème. The Santana 20 is a proven R2AK design, Team Kelp earned Ketchikan glory in 2017. Sure, they trained for two years on the same boat they raced on, but Team Loustic Supersonic’s unwavering belief in their ability to take a boat they’ve never sailed 750 miles on a coast they’ve never seen—that level of military-grade, uninformed self-confidence alone makes them eligible for citizenship in the R2AK, if not the United States itself.
Maybe it’s the colors of the flag, but their red, white, and blue don’t seem to run either. Sacré bleu.
Beyond having coeurs of champions, and a proven bateau, Team Loustic Supersonic has gotten as possibly prepared as you can while 5,000 miles away, up to and including building a cardboard replica of their boat to ready themselves for the cramped reality. While the French might not have the word for the indescribable je ne sais quois of champions, this team has it—not to mention hard charging backgrounds that make it almost impossible for them to avoid the R2AK:
- Road trips through Africa and Central America
- Teaching sailing for the better part of three decades
- Honeymoon sail/camping in Thailand on a Hobie 16
- Judo competitions since age 6
(We honestly have no idea what the last one has to do with anything R2AK, but it sounds cool… maybe bears.)
Team Loustic Supersonic tooled up their ability to enginelessly suffer on the water during the 2021 Moribahn Challenge, which is a 5 day stage race in coastal France. While the bays of Brittany have a different bear : bakery ratio than the BC coast, they still won their division for 20’ and under on an 18’ beach cat. Tres cool.
Bienvenue to the Race to Alaska, Team Loustic Supersonic. As a tribute to your country and customs, make it to Ketchikan and we’ll request that Border Patrol officers arrive dressed as mimes. (Also, please don’t refer to our harbor seals in your native tongue. This is a family show.)