Sunday, April 27, 2014, in the popular Western Mediterranean yacht charter destination – French Riviera, was marked by the 3rd annual St Tropez to Monaco charity bike ride in aid of the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation. Organised by the Champagne and Oyster Cycling Club (affectionately known as COCC by members), cyclists comprised Eddie Jordan and other members of the Maclaren F1 group, Prince Albert II of Monaco, who is patron, as well as professional cycling heroes Mario Cipollini and Tiffany Cromwell.
Double the number of cyclists took part this year and 140 enthusiastic people started out in the lovely South of France yacht charter location – St Tropez. Although the weather was windy and cold, and dark clouds loomed, the atmosphere and camaraderie between riders was unquenchable.
The team of cyclists were led out of St Tropez by professionals Mario Cipollini and Tiffany Cromwell. Mario in particular gained a lot of attention at the front of the peloton with cyclists passing by the group nearly falling off when they realised quite who was in lead position!
Highlights of this event included Eddie Jordan playing the spoons at a stop between Nice and Monaco and the leading cyclists Mario and Tiffany, plus Steve Crowe, MD of Yachting Pages and two other fighting fit contenders, realising they were two hours ahead of the rest of the group and having to stop for them to catch up. The group was also able to cycle down the Promenade des Anglaise in Nice without any other traffic, due to a half marathon finishing just ahead of them.
Steve Crowe, MD of Yachting Pages said, “As a keen cyclist I have taken part in cycle rides for charity before, but never with this many riders. It was a real mix of people and fitness levels, and the team spirit was fantastic. Being in a group of 140 riders was intense, especially at the start, but we all soon found our place in the group and settled in to the challenge. From raising money for such a worthwhile cause to participating in the race with various industry icons, this has been a great experience.”
The Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation promotes the importance and reinforces awareness of water safety. Every single day at least two children die through drowning. Quoted on the charity website Princess Charlene explained. “We are all aware of horrible stories about small children drowning because they could not swim. Teaching them how to swim could save their lives, and the importance and awareness will help them to feel more comfortable and confident in all aquatic areas as well.
“My foundation is about children who can become great adults, if we collectively show them the way forward with strong sport values and solidarity, then together we can ensure that these young athletes get the opportunity to succeed.”