- Denis and Julie won the special season “Beijing Express, back on the legendary road” whose final was broadcast on Tuesday on M6.
- The Corsican couple won against the Lille sisters Pauline and Aurélie and won 100,000 euros.
- Julie and Denis talk about their victory with “20 Minutes” and speak about the impact of containment measures on their activity as restaurateurs.
Julie and Denis almost missed the 100,000 euros. But the couple of Corsican restaurateurs finally won the final of Beijing Express, back on the legendary road, broadcast this Tuesday on
M6. They literally siphoned the pot of their opponents, Pauline and Aurélie. The two Lille sisters, even if they competed for the beauty of the gesture (ie zero euro), embarked on the ultimate test with the niac. However, despite a very comfortable lead, they were caught and forced to bow. Julie and Denis thus took their revenge on their first participation, in season 9, in 2013. At the time, the duo had to settle for second place. For 20 minutes, they return to this highly disputed final.
You could say that you were hot …
Julie: Yes, as with all of this adventure. It is like what we experienced during this Beijing Express. It was not easy, we had to go to our entrenchments, we lived a lot of complicated things: drivers who got the wrong route, the police who intervened … We piled up the galleys and that forged us to go and win this Beijing Express.
You were playing for 100,000 euros. Have you been paralyzed by the issue?
Denis: Honestly, of course, we’re not going to spit on it, but it didn’t matter to us. We would have played for 0 euro or for 100,000 euros in the same way. We didn’t think about it at all. We were surprised to perform so well in the first phase of the final and to take the entire prize pool from Pauline and Aurélie. When we left for the final sprint, we said to ourselves: “Now there is more than …”, but money goes after. Beijing Express is an adventure that takes so much guts. We have one goal, it’s to go and light the torch. What follows from it is secondary. Julie and I were also seeking revenge, all the more so in a all stars where we faced some of the most seasoned pairs. We put a little more pressure on ourselves and we had to follow the level too.
Pauline and Aurélie were ahead of you …
Julie: We had an argument with a driver who wanted to prevent us from taking back cars, so we lost time. But we were able to catch up with the girls. It is indicative of Beijing Express : Nothing is acquired and nothing is never won in advance. How many times we thought we were first when we were last … or vice versa. Everything stays in play all the time, you have to believe it to the end. This time, luck smiled on us, we had the little help from destiny. The galleys that Pauline and Aurélie underwent during the final, we, we wiped them throughout the adventure. Maybe we arrived mentally stronger …
You took your revenge on your first participation. Would you be ready to participate in a future “Beijing Express” or are you thinking that the circle is complete?
Denis: When we do Beijing Express once, you can do it again twenty times. We had the rage to reach the end but, even if we achieved victory, if we are called tomorrow, we leave tomorrow.
Julie: We are addicted to this adrenaline, to what it brings in terms of adventure, travel, meetings. When you taste it, you don’t want it to stop.
Denis: We don’t want to make TV shows at all costs. The door is open, we have other proposals, we will select, we will not leave what we know and what we like to do.
These proposals are in what areas?
Denis: In various fields. We leave the doors open because we are always pleasantly surprised to attract the interest of certain people. But not everything fits us. We will not ignore what we want and what we are. I could not do certain programs, the viewers see very well how we are. We are based on adventure, discovery, surpassing ourselves. These programs should therefore meet these criteria.
You are restaurateurs. How do you live the closure of your restaurant imposed for containment?
Denis: It’s quite complicated. We are not an isolated case. The
Corsica lives a lot from tourism. It is therefore a disaster for our region, for our island, for our economy. As entrepreneurs, we are forced to make decisions. We cross our fingers to be able to stay the course. We are like all French people, we are worried about the future. There will be a before and an after. At the end of the confinement, we are supposed to have a season which will, I think, be like the current economy: gloomy. We ask ourselves questions, it’s anxiety-provoking.
Julie: We are also worried because we are both in the same boat. There is not one who performs another activity to compensate. Today, we are both suffering from the situation. The restaurant has been closed since March 14,
we are confined with us with our daughter. Our employees are unemployed. We ask ourselves a lot of questions about the future. There is the specific economic impact on the situation, that is to say on the days of closure: what is lost, we will never catch up. And then, particularly for us in Corsica, there is the impact on the medium term, the summer season.
Denis: Even if we are open year round, summer activity is something we hold dear. Of course it puts the cards back into play. We are forced to make decisions and think differently. I repeat myself, there will be a before and an after, we will have to improvise.