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Giraglia Rolex Cup at Saint-Tropez, the Biggest Mediterranean Regatta

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Written by Marc Pagnier Published Jun 20, 2014 Marc Pagnier

Rédacteur en Chef des titres en anglais, français et chinois.

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Participants from ten different countries and more than two hundred sailing boats gathered at Saint-Tropez for the Giraglia Rolex Cup from 13th -18th June. The event was organized by Yacht Club Italiano, Yacht Club de France and the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez. The Giraglia Rolex Cup included both inshore races and offshore races. (Photo above by Rolex / Carlo Borlenghi)

History of the Giraglia Rolex Cup

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The regatta Giraglia was created by three men in 1952: René Levainville, Franco Gavagnin and Beppe Croce in a Parisian café, who wished to conquer deep-sea sailing through this ambitious Franco-Italian challenge. On 11th July 1953, 22 sailing boats departed for the first race under the strong cold wind, le Mistral.  In 1974, the participation of 132 sailing boats broke the record. In 1997, Rolex became one of the partners of the race, thus it was renamed Giraglia Rolex Cup. In 1998, the Yacht Club de Saint-Tropez also joined in and inaugurated three new inshore races at Saint-Tropez. In 2002, the Société Nautique de Saint-Tropez took over the organization in Saint-Tropez. 2002 was a year of milestone: a participation of 162 sailing boats; IMOCA class 50- and 60- foot monohulls were welcomed to the race for the first time. It was a real challenge for the prestigious sailing ships as well as for the 30-metre Maxis. Rolex invited all participants and teams to an evening gala every year.

Giraglia Rolex Cup

The regatta lasted for about a week: 3 days of inshore races (The Giraglia Rolex Cup, coefficient 1) at the bay of Saint-Tropez, maximum 35 miles; followed by offshore race (The Giraglia, coefficient 2), 243 miles, which began at Saint-Tropez via the island Giraglia, north of Corsica and ended at Monaco.

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