Sweating in 30 degree heat and maybe with tears of relief the Serenity team wins the Riviera Water Bike Challenge. And what a challenge – 25 kilometres to pedal on the water by completing 23 loops in the Mediterranean, by teams in relay in the presence of H.S.H. Prince Albert II, H.S.H. Hereditary Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella.
19 water bikes took the start in the Port of Monaco this June 5th , to join the course off the Solarium at the Digue Rainier III where the relay zone was located. A total of 95 people in all participated in this race, including 41 sports celebrities …. as diverse a group as you will ever see including Victoria Silvstedt and Olympic bobsledders Boris Vain and Rudy Rinaldi congratulated by the Prince on their arrival at the quay.
Indeed Prince Albert started the race off at 10:10 a.m. at the Yacht Club de Monaco.
Try taming the waves while balancing on the handlebars of a floating bike; it requires both strength and endurance. And the public was present in large numbers to encourage the teams to give their all.
Crossing the finish line at the Yacht Club after more than 2 hours and 50 minutes of racing the Serenity team won, made up of Mr. Gareth Wittstock, Secretary General of the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation, Terence Parkin, Ambassador of the Foundation, Caleb Ewan, Philip Deignan and David Tanner.
The A&S Estate team finished 2nd (with Edgard John Augustin aka Bionic Body and Greg Minnaar), and the Interpadel team (with Bjørn Maaseide, Foundation Ambassador, Thor Hushovd and Federico Vella) completed the podium. HSH Prince Albert II presented the trophy to the winning team.
Mr. Patrice Cellario, Government Counselor – Minister of the Interior and Mr. Laurent Stefanini, Ambassador of France to Monaco, presented the trophies respectively to the 2nd and 3rd team.
The objective of the Riviera Water Bike Challenge
The objective of the Riviera Water Bike Challenge is to offer an original and friendly sporting challenge in order to raise funds for the prevention of drowning. This year, the funds raised will finance the “Swim for Safety” project supported by the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation in Sri Lanka, to teach swimming and water safety to underprivileged children.
The public could follow the race online, from start to finish, and donate by voting for their favourite team.
Cap Optimist: Monaco to Athens
At 2.30 p.m., Ms. Stéphanie Geyer Barneix, Race Director of the Riviera Water Bike Challenge, set off for the departure of the “Cap Optimist” which is the Monaco to Athens expedition from the Yacht Club. The blessing of the race took place in the presence of H.S.H. the Prince, H.E. Mr. Pierre Dartout, Minister of State, the Ambassador of France and many Monegasque personalities.
The Cap Optimist team, made up of 6 experienced waterwomen and lifesaving champions (Stéphanie Geyer Barneix, Alexandra Lux, Emmanuelle Bescheron, Itziar Abascal, Margot Calvet, Marie Goyeneche) will take turns in prone paddleboarding to reach Athens, Greece, in 15 days and more than 1800 kilometres.
The purpose of this crossing is to raise funds for the educational projects of the Princess Charlene of Monaco Foundation and for the ELPIDA association in Greece, which accompanies sick children with cancer.
This expedition is also a preparation for the great Cap Optimist crossing in the South Pacific, from Peru to French Polynesia, to set a new world record in 2023 and promote the Hope Team East association which helps sick people to live better thanks to sport.
Cap Optimist offers donors to support them through the purchase of kilometers (1 km = €100) representing the effort and distance of this crossing by strength of arms.