Rolex, new partner of the International Jumping of Dinard

By MyWatch

More than 100 years of history. In 1912, the Equestrian Society of Dinard is created by Count Joseph Rochaïd Faucigny Lucinge Dahdah, commandant Le Tourneur, Captain Poussineau, President Poincaré, Prince of Faucigny Lucinge, to allow the cavalry units of St Malo, Dinan, Pontivy and Rennes to train, together with some private amateurs. Every year, the society also had to organize a show jumping competition.

The first edition of the Jumping of Dinard was held from 25th to 28th July 1912, on the sports field of the “Etoile Dinardaise” club, (Degas Stadium, in Port Blanc). More than just a show jumping, this first edition was a real celebration of horses. Due to a large promotion, it was a great success, with close to 4000 elegant and chic spectators who made it to the site especially for the occasion.

For the second year, in 1913, the Jumping of Dinard scored a full house since the army officers from Dinan, Chartres and Vannes confirmed its participation, as well as some of the best gentlemen riders from the district. While the 1913 edition had hardly started, the 1914edition was already in focus. In order to take the event to a new dimension, the most famous stables of the country and the best horse breeders of the region were invited. Aprice money of 18000 francs was offered.

When the World War of 1914broke out, horses and carriages were requisitioned. The post war period was certainly the most memorable time for the Jumping of Dinard. It received fresh impetus with the presence of famous horses and riders in the jumping classes, as well as the Cadre Noir of Saumur ensuring the show. In 1934, in view of its success and the increasing number of invited foreign riders, the event became official. Since it was labelled “international” in 1960, Dinard welcomed major equestrian competitions such as the European Junior championships in 1969.

In 1981, the Equestrian Society of Dinard moves the show to the brand new facilities of the Val Porée equestrian stadium, and organises the Senior European championships in 1985. The presence of the European elite and the 10 000 spectators contributed to make the event a big success.

From 1988 to 1992, the International Jumping of Dinard held the CSIO5* of France, a prestigious label which definitely pushed the show to the restricted circle of the biggest competitions in the world. In 1998, Dinard was awarded the “best organisation” prize for a CSIB level.

After a transition period, the seaside resort reconnected with the show jumping world elite in 2013, when Sport Concept took over the organisation of the event. Labelled CSI3* at that time, it was classified CSI4* in 2014, and finally gained a 5th star in 2015, the highest international level in the discipline.

A new 2015 edition that promises to offer the public its share of strong emotions with the presence of the best international horses and riders, only a few days before the European championships in Germany.

Rolex and equestrianism

As the crown in equestrianism for over 50 years, Rolex is a major force at play behind the sport’s finest events, riders and organizations. Whether supporting leading athletes such as Kevin Staut and Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum or maintaining excellence with the historic CHIO Aachen in Germany or the newly established Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, Rolex has cultivated a privileged relationship with the elite world of equestrian sports.

The roots of Rolex’s affinity for sports and human achievement can be traced back to the pioneering origins of the company. When founder Hans Wilsdorf set up his watchmaking firm, he was influenced by the swift changes sweeping through society at the beginning of the 20th century. In an era when wristwatches were still regarded as fragile items of apparel, he was determined to create a wristwatch that would be robust, precise and reliable, adapted to ever more active lifestyles.

In 1910, a Rolex wristwatch obtained the first certificate ever granted to such a watch by the Official Watch Rating Centre in Bienne, Switzerland. In 1926, Rolex invented the Rolex Oyster, the first waterproof wristwatch in the world, thanks to a case equipped with an ingenious patented system consisting of a screw-down bezel, case back and winding crown. To prove his invention, Hans Wilsdorf equipped Mercedes Gleitze with an Oyster when she swam the English Channel a year later. The Rolex watch emerged from more than 10 hours in the water in perfect working condition, and the young Englishwoman effectively became the brand’s first Testimonee – a witness to the watch’s uncompromised performance. In 1931, Rolex invented the first wristwatch self-winding system with a free rotor, called the Perpetual rotor, the precursor of contemporary self-winding systems.

With Hans Wilsdorf at the helm, Rolex continued to use the world as a real-life proving ground for the Oyster, demonstrating time and again its reliability in the most extreme conditions, on land, in the air, in the depths of the ocean or on the tallest peaks. By being associated with so many achievements, Rolex became the trusted reference for chronometric precision, robustness and reliability around the world.

Meanwhile, Rolex evolved, as did its product, in a constant pursuit of perfection. As part of this evolution, Rolex watches – made from only the highest quality materials and designed by the industry’s best – became symbols of elegance and prestige. As a result, it was only logical that Rolex support equestrianism – one of the world’s finest sporting activities – through an alliance with showjumper Pat Smythe, who became the brand’s first equestrian Testimonee in 1957. Since that auspicious partnership, Rolex’s involvement in equestrian sport has increased significantly.

Today, Rolex sponsors major international equestrian events in distinct disciplines. Most recently, the brand partnered the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping, a global initiative created in 2013 by the three equestrian Majors: CHIO Aachen, the CSIO Spruce Meadows ‘Masters’ Tournament and CHI Geneva. Considered by the sport to be the ultimate show jumping challenge, the Rolex Grand Slam rewards the rider who wins the Grand Prix at each show in succession. As a long-term partner to all three of these prestigious events, Rolex’s decision to support the Rolex Grand Slam of Show Jumping was a natural progression.

Since 2002, Rolex has sponsored the World Equestrian Games. This first-class event takes place every four years at a different venue, attracting the top riders in jumping, dressage, eventing, endurance, vaulting, driving, reining and para-equestrian sport, the eight disciplines officially recognized by the sport’s governing body. The last Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games took place in Normandy, France in 2014. Rolex has been Title Sponsor, since 2001, of the Rolex IJRC Top 10 Final – a highlight on the equestrian calendar that assembles the 10 highest-ranked riders in the world. The brand also supports the biennial European Championships, an event which brings together Europe’s best equestrian pairs. The 2015 edition is being held in Aachen, Germany.

Furthermore, Rolex sponsors three legendary competitions on the Event calendar, as Title Sponsor of the Rolex Kentucky Three Day Event and Official Timepiece for the Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Horse Trials and Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials. The brand actively supports excellence in the discipline through the Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing – an award presented to the rider who wins consecutively at these three prestigious and challenging yearly events.

Behind the scenes, Rolex participates in the development of equitation through its patronage of the Jumping Owners Club, an organization that brings together and supports the world’s leading horse owners involved in the discipline. The brand partners the International Jumping Riders Club (IJRC), a group comprised of the top’ranked riders that promotes the image of jumping in equestrian sport and organizes the Rolex IJRC Top 10 Final. Most recently, Rolex partnered the Young Riders Academy, developed by a group of equestrian professionals with the cooperation of the IJRC and the European Equestrian Federation (EEF).

Rolex has also cultivated close relationships with equestrianism’s exceptional competitors, counting among its Testimonies German rider of American origin Meredith Michaels- Beerbaum, the first woman to be ranked World No. 1 in jumping; Canada’s Eric Lamaze, who won a gold medal in the individual show jumping event in the 2008 Beijing Olympics and became World No. 1 for the first time in 2009; and three-time winner of the Rolex World Cup™ Final or European jumping champion Kevin Staut, from France, who won a team silver medal at the 2014 World Equestrian Games in Caen.

In eventing, Rolex supports British equestrian Zara Phillips, team silver medal winner at the 2012 London Olympics and at the World Equestrian Games in Caen in 2014. And in dressage, Rolex Testimony Isabell Werth- world record holder for most titles won in her discipline – has the unique honour of having represented Germany at four Olympic Games (1992, 1996, 2000 and 2008), winning team and individual medals at each. Isabell Werth was also a team gold medalist at the 2014 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Caen.


In 2015 Rolex has joined the International Jumping of Dinard which is back in the international elite of the equestrian world.This valuable event is held on the Val Porée ground of the elegant seaside resort of Dinard, it is one of the last Horse Show Jumping competition on grass of the world which gathers the best riders each year.

High level sport is back in Dinard

Second last leg of the FFE French Tour circuit that brings together the 8 most important CSI5* held in France, the International Jumping of Dinard appears to be the key event of the summer, especially as it will be the last rendez vous for equestrian sports before the European championships.

While the Côte d’Emeraude will be at its peak time, some of the most famous champions already confirmed they will join the first CSI5* in Brittany. Marcus EHNING (Germany) team Olympic champion in 2000, team vice world champion in 2010, Kent FARRINGTON(USA), team 3rd at the World Equestrian Games in 2014, Steve GUERDAT(Switzerland), 2012 Olympic champion, Eric LAMAZE (CAN), 2008 Olympic champion, Pénélope LEPREVOST(FRA), team vice champion, Kevin STAUT(FRA), team vice champion, Rodrigo PESSOA(BRA), 2004 Olympic champion, Edwina TOPS-ALEXANDER(AUS), n°20 on the world ranking…

On the programme of the CSI5*, six classes out of which 5 count toward the world ranking, and three highlights:

First “big” class of the weekend, this table Acompetition against the clock followed by a jump off is run over 1m55 jumps. It will allow the riders to qualify for the Grand Prix of the city of Dinard on Sunday.

Mythical class in Dinard, the Tropicana Derby will certainly fill up the stands one more time. If truthfulness and courage are required to line up at the start of this combination of natural and traditional fences, endurance will be necessary as well to cover the 1100 m course, double the distance of a regular competition.

With a prize money of 268 000 euros, and a qualification at stake for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games, the Grand Prix of the city of Dinard will be the grand finale of this competition. Table Acompetition, followed by a jump off, the Grand Prix of the city of Dinard will bring together 47 horse-rider pairs, among the best in the world, who will fight over a 1,60m course.

Besides the CSI5*, three other levels of competition will be on the program. The professional riders associated to young horses will compete in the CSI2*or CSI1*, where highly qualified amateurs like the movie stars like Guillaume Canetand Marina Handswill compete. 6 and 7 years old horseswill be face to face in their respective classes according to their age.

The 2015 European championships in focus

Three weeks away from the European championships in Aachen (11thto 23rdAugust), the short listed horses and riders will take advantage of the International Jumping of Dinard to proceed to the ultimate adjustments. Philippe Guerdat, the national team manager, should make the most of the Breton show to review his riders for the last time, and refine his selection in order to present the best possible team in Germany.

Dinard will be particularly strategic, and will represent a main step in the preparation for the contenders to the European podiums.

Sophie DUBOURG, Directrice Technique Nationale : “Retour de Dinard parmi l’élite mondiale.”

Sophie DUBOURG greeted the new CSI5* of Dinard with open arms. “The French Federation is delighted to welcome Dinard back into the world elite. This new competition allows the FFE French Tour circuit to include an 8th leg for 2015, a record.”
If the preparatory programme for the European championships will be studied on a case by case basis for the riders likely to carry the colours of the French team in Germany, Sophie DUBOURG highlights the interesting profile of Dinard, held a few weeks before the European confrontation.
“It is important to have beautiful grass arenas like the Val Porée. The Mars family, at the head of the Jumping, is preparing a great edition, with the guarantee of their organisation and logistic, as well as the attractiveness of the site and the city of Dinard. In France, the competitions at this level are the best showcases for our sport. They are also associated to attractive and dynamic cities. As far as operating forces are concerned, every rider will follow an individual schedule, we will adapt to the horses. In Dinard, we will not enter as many horses as in a CSIO5*. We will have to make choices. But since France became a great showcase for the world class jumping, some members of the French team running for Aachen will be in Dinard, an important event on the national and international calendar, that will allow riders to score points for the world ranking.”

  • Kevin Staut, Témoignage Rolex and 7th world ranking, will participate at the International Jumping of Dinard
  • Rolex, new partner of the International Jumping of Dinard
  • Kevin Staut, Témoignage Rolex and 7th world ranking, will participate at the International Jumping of Dinard