It’s rare to find new recruits in the hydroplane world and even more so to find a female recruit and especially in Quebec. But that is exactly the challenge that Stephanie Blain is taking on with the acquisition of Eric McKenna’s old hydroplane.
The young recruit will be starting her first HRL season in the 2.5L class driving the Canada Girl in homage to her Father’s Grand Prix class hydroplane.
The boat will be identical to the Canada Boy and carry a similar number, the number 757. And what are the objectives for the Beloeil resident? “Simply to have fun! Have fun every time I get in the boat. I want to take the time to get accustomed to the sport while clearing my restrictions; it’s all new to me. Once I get use to the boat we will see where I go from there.” “I am confident,” she confides, having caught the bug last year as she followed Mario Blain’s Grand Prix team.
“I love the adrenaline rush and I was always impressed with this sport. I never thought that one day I would have the chance to drive my own hydroplane but now for the 2017 season I can thanks to my Father.” The new S-57 team will be 100% feminine backed by the Canada Boy team and her boyfriend and Crew Chief Nicolas Prevost.
Next week the Canada Boy team and Stephanie Blain will take possession of the boat. “ Then we will get the boat ready to receive her new colors. Then the next step will be the lettering and the engine. If all goes well we should be ready for the end of April for the 5 @ 7 of the Canada Boy GP-757 and the Canada Girl S-57 which will take place at the Kia Mario Blain dealership located at 1235 Boulevard Armand Frappier in Sainte-Julie”.
A History that goes way back
Following in her Father’s footsteps in the boat-racing world, Stephanie was born not long after Mario Blain took a break form the sport. She remembers, “ Since I was very young he would talk to me about the sport and show me pictures and videos, and his trophies.”
Having acquired the Canada Boy GP-757 last year Mario Blain and his daughter followed the HRL circuit for all of the 2016 season that also gave her a good awareness of the sport. She concluded by saying, “ This year I have the chance to drive one of the gems myself and I am very anxious!
HRL rejoices with Stephanie’s arrival in the League! HRL Director Michel Poirier says, “ Close to 10% of our drivers are female and we are proud of that!