/ Recreation and Leisure
French Riviera Tourism - The Monaco Grand Prix
The tiny principality of Monaco, essentially comprising the famous resort and casino of Monte-Carlo, is located on the French Riviera, sandwiched in between the City of Nice and Italy. Monaco is renowned for many things, not least its casino and number of yachts and millionaires per square meter. But perhaps most famously, Monaco is known for the Grand Prix, now held annually at the end of May.
The Monaco Grand Prix was held for the first time on April 14th 1929 under the patronage of Prince Louis II of Monaco. This first race had only 16 competitors who had to complete the 100 laps of the 200-mile circuit. The outcome was that the race was won by William Grover Williams (usually simply referred to as "Williams"), representing Molsheim, driving a green Bugatti 35B at an average speed of around 50 miles per hour. The color of his car was to become famous as the British racing color from then on.
The appearance of the Monaco Grand Prix on international racing calendars is the result of the work of a certain Antony Noghes, a prosperous cigarette manufacturer, who together with some friends, in the mid 1920s set up the Automobile Club of Monaco, an association that originated out of the original association Sport Automobile et Velocipedique, dating back as far as 1890.
In order for the Monaco Grand Prix to expand and recognized internationally by the then equivalent of the International Automobile Federation, an automobile sporting event had to be organized on its own territory. This is all well and good until you appreciate a few basic facts about the country of Monaco. Monaco is in fact the second-smallest independent country in the world, and the most densely populated, covering an area of only 1.95 square kilometers. So what did Antony Noghes do? This enterprising fellow proposed the creation of an Grand Prix which would take place right in the streets of the Principality. He even managed to obtain the official support of Prince Louis II and Louis Chiron, the famous Monegasque racing driver. Surprisingly enough, after a detailed study of the layout of Monaco, it was decided that the topography of the area was indeed well suited to the setting up of a natural racetrack.
Since the Grand Prix was first officially launched, Monaco has known only fourteen years without the race: during the war years between 1939 and 1947 and then in 1949, 1951, 1953 and 1954. However from the 1950s onwards the Grand Prix became a main feature in the annual calendar of World Champion Racing Drivers.
As to the circuit itself, over its long life it has never undergone any significant changes, the length remaining the same until 1950. Then in 1952, modifications to the Sainte Devote bend led to the shortening of the track to 3145 kilometers.
It underwent another change in 1973, when it was increased in length by 135 meters through the addition of a new stretch of track along the road bordering the port, which joined up with the track at the new marina, finishing in a hairpin bend around the famous Monegasque restaurant "La Rascasse". Visitors to Monaco today will notice the annual spectacle of grandstand erection along the length of the old port a full two months before the date of the race. In Monaco, adequate preparation is crucial to the success of the race!
Since the length of the laps had been increased, it was then considered necessary to reduce the number of laps, and the race became one of 78 laps in total. Then in 1976, a further two chicanes were added, the first being at Sainte Devote, the other at the location of the Rascasse hairpin bend. Together this extended the length of each lap by 34 meters.
Another ten years of racing history followed swiftly on with little change, until the 44th Monaco Grand Prix, when the road-widening scheme at the start of the Quai des Etats Unis enabled the creation of yet another chicane, resulting in the lap length increasing to a little over two miles.
In spite of its origins, the many changes of elevation, narrow streets and tight corners make the Monaco Grand Prix perhaps the most demanding and indeed the most dangerous track in modern day Formula 1 racing. In fact the narrowness of many of the streets make it highly dangerous and almost impossible to overtake on many parts of the track. However its history and the absolute spectacle of the event are likely to guarantee the future of the event in the history of racing sports for years to come.
Article Source: http://www.redsofts.com/articles/
You can learn more about Hotels in Nice and find Bianca Tavaresí guide to Florida property at Florida Real Estate.
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