Remi Vila Foils Around Martinique
Starboard’s Head Designer, Remi Vila, Foils 219km Around His Home Island, Martinique, in ONE DAY. Is this the windsurfing experience of a lifetime?!
‘Foiling around Martinique was my revenge for all the bad stuff that happened to me in the past years!’
Remi Vila makes his dream come true during his last holiday and foils around Martinique in 9.5 hours. Since quitting his career as a professional athlete, our head of R&D, has had several near-death experiences. The worst of them being several operations to cure an acoustic Tumor! Now, after 4 years of preparation and without letting himself get demotivated or stopped by a broken hip and a broken collarbone ( 2 different biking accidents), he has fulfilled his childhood dream and foils around Martinique!! Remi Vila shares his story with us in this little documentary and wants to send a strong message to the youth starting with foiling:
Dream big, never give up; you can do it.
Watch His Documentary Now:
Hi, Remi, you just foiled around Martinique. How did you prepare for the challenge?
I prepared for this for 4 years by biking 50 km per day or 7 km of paddleboarding and, of course, as many hours on the foil as possible. But not non-stop due to severe accidents, I broke my collarbone and my femoral neck within the past 4 years.
Where did the idea for the challenge originate, and what was the hardest part?
Since I was very young, I wanted to do it alone, but I never really had the budget and time. I already did it many times in 5 steps or 1 with 4 riders but one board. 2 years ago, I was the coach of Thomas Lequesne, who did it but have to abandon it due to lack of wind, so we decide to do it together this year. It isn’t easy to organise as you need to find people and a boat ready to wait for the perfect forecast conditions with you. This time the seaweed even made our life more complicated as we had to study the best moment to have as little weed as possible.
What were the conditions like during the crossing? Did you have to make any adjustments or changes to your equipment?
The wind was between 1 to 25 knots all around the island and northeast. Not the perfect direction as we have to tack a lot upwind, while if the wind were south-east, that would be only one tack. I use the same equipment all the way; I have to adjust the sail’s trim.
What would be your best tips for people planning to do a long-distance on the foil?
For sure, you need to be perfectly tuned with your equipment to save energy at the max. Of course, excellent physical preparation and having a camel bag with water and Maurten gel are essential. I would advise remembering to always turn your head several times on very long tacks not to get cramps at the neck. For sure, the double pads I used on my board increased my riding comfort a lot.
You have a strong race boarding background, but recently, we’ve seen you mainly foiling, Fin or Foil?
Raceboarding was a very intense part of my life. But now as soon as I have the time, it’s only for foiling, as I can enjoy windsurfing all day long without pain, and the sensation is really indescribable. So the answer is easy, definitely foil.