On Tuesday, November 7, Prince Albert hosted a fundraising dinner for Outward Bound with HRH Prince Andrew, Duke Of York, at the palace.
The following morning, and despite unfavourable weather conditions, the two Princes observed the first Princes’ Cup, a remarkable rowing competition highlighting teamwork and community, in Port Hercule.
On the occasion of the meeting in the Principality of Monaco of HSH Prince Albert II, Patron of Outward Bound Monaco, and HRH the Duke of York, Chairman of the Trustees of Outward Bound Trust, Outward Bound Monaco decided to organise the rowing regatta, which will now become an annual challenge.
The event was organised in association with the Société Nautique de Monaco (SNM) and the Monaco Yacht Club.
The princes were welcomed by students of SNM and OBM at the Yacht Club.
After a speech by Jean-Marc Giraldi, president of the SNM, the four teams were presented to the two princes and the invited guests.
Each team was captained by an international sporting champion (rugby, running, cycling and rowing), a student who had attended an Outward Bound course and three teenage rowers from SNM.
The teams were each named after an Outward Bound centre: Loch Eil in Scotland, Ullswater in England, Aberdovey in Wales, and Monaco.
The rain had eased slightly by the time teams took to the water with slippery oars for a regatta of four races between the Quai de l’Hirondelle and the Jetée Luciana, a distance of around 250 metres.
“Outward Bound is all about overcoming obstacles,” Judy Churchill, Outward Bound Monaco’s General Secretary, told Monaco Life, “Whatever the challenge, whatever the weather, you get up, smile and carry on.”
Prince Albert II and the Duke of York watched the races close up on the Jetée Luciana.
The winning team of the first Princes’ Cup was the Welsh team Aberdovey, captained by rugby star Dan Luger.
“It was brilliant,” Dan, who came in second place at the Rivera Water Bike Challenge, told Monaco Life. “Rowing is all about timing and sportsmanship. And today was about trying something new.”
Cyclist Tiffany Cromwell and her Monaco team, disadvantaged by a broken oar in the final race, took second place. “I love a challenge and this was a fantastic event. It was fun and about working as a team.”
The Outward Bound Monaco Ambassador added, “I believe young people guided in the right direction through sport can become a better version of themselves.”
The Loch Eil (Scotland) team, led by marathon runner Paula Radcliff, took third place followed by the England (Ullswater) team and its captain, rowing champion Matthew Bennett.
The princes presented the cup and medals to the participants who, in spite of being wet and cold, were clearly delighted to have been part of such an exceptional event.
US Olympic Pole Vaulter Kory Tarpenning, owner of Nike, one of the event sponsors, told Monaco Life, “I love the concept of Outward Bound. It gives kids the opportunity to learn and develop through sport – discipline, commitment, self-confidence and teamwork.”
Michael Peagram, President of Outward Bound Monaco, said he was “delighted by the success of the event, which puts into perspective the challenges and activities that we bring to the younger generation. The cooperation with the SNM is a very rewarding and successful partnership, based on shared values, and we are very grateful for their assistance.”
SNM Director of Communication, French Olympic rower Roland Weill, told Monaco Life that every year some 900 students in the Principality take part in rowing at the club as part of the National Education Programme. “Rowing is an individual sport that you practice with a team and you can learn it at any age.”
Adding that Monaco’s rowing club has a new dynamic trainer, Olympic rower Daniel Fauchet, Roland said the Princes’ Cup is a good opportunity for SNM to promote the sport.
Organisers of the Princes’ Cup are hoping that the publicity from the event will draw attention to the opportunities that Outward Bound Monaco can offer to the young people of Monaco and the surrounding area.
“In spite of the dreadful weather everyone thoroughly enjoyed the Princes’ Cup, for which we have received the kind support of the two princes,” Michael Peagram commented. “This is an immense privilege which we appreciate enormously.”
Article first published November 10, 2017.