EDHEC Sailing Cup

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Logo EDHEC Sailing Cup noir.png
EDHEC Sailing Cup logo.
Established: 1969
Headquarters: Lille, France
Sponsors: Ernst & Young, La Banque postale, Xerox, Orange, Lidl and Chambre de commerce et d'industrie de Morlaix
Most recent winner: France Altran Centrale Paris (2015)
Current Race
Start: Roscoff, France: 15.04.2016
Finish: Roscoff, France: 23.04.2016
Entries: 3.000 (overall)
Legs: 7
Yachts Used: One-Design division: Grand Surprise, Longtze and J/80
IRC division: monohull boats with a Length Over All from 8m to 16m and a rating between 14 and 33.5 net handicap
Websites: ccedhec.com

The EDHEC Sailing Cup (« ESC ») (Course Croisière EDHEC or « CCE » in French) is the leading student sporting event in Europe and the world’s biggest intercollegiate offshore regatta.[1] Created in 1969, it nowadays gathers 3,000 participants coming from 23 countries and from more than 160 world-class universities (HEC Paris, University of Oxford, University of Chicago, ESADE…).

Throughout the years the EDHEC Sailing Cup has grown in diversity. Today the ESC is composed of four different trophies that include diverse sports: the Sea Trophy (the regatta), the Land Trophy (a Multi-sport raid), the Sand Trophy (a beach soccer, beach rugby and beach volley competition) and the Air Trophy (a Kitesurfing and Windsurfing contest).[2]


Three French students from the prestigious EDHEC Business School willing to broaden the sport of sailing, Jean-Luc Picot, Francis Prat and Pierre Jouannet, decided in 1968 to organize a student regatta. It took place from May 1 to May 4, 1969 at Dunkerque. For its first edition the then-called EDHEC Business School Cup gathered 18 crews, and was won by a Dutch boat. Older than the Vendée Globe, the Volvo Ocean Race and other sailing event, the EDHEC Sailing Cup was a precursor in the high-level competitions.

Seven years after its creation the regatta reached the symbolic number of 100 crews from 10 nationalities and took is actual name, the “EDHEC Sailing Cup”. 329 boats attended the 18th edition, a record. For the 19th edition the organizing team decided to build a Village to welcome participants, partners and activities in one place. The same year was also created the “Chaîne Avitaillement”, an open air free supermarket. For its 23rd edition, 20 international boats participated in the regatta including the first African boat, from Tunisia, and boats from United States or Brazil. In 1994 was created the Land Trophy. It was at the beginning created as a substitution for the Sea Trophy. It was a great success and it became a fully Trophy. In 1998 an Israeli-Palestinian participated in the regatta, the “Peace Boat.”[3] 6,000 participants attend to the EDHEC Sailing Cup in Brest. In 1999, the EDHEC Sailing Cup became the leading sporting student event in Europe.

In order to give a more sporting dimension to the event, the Sand Trophy was created in 2006. In 2010 was organized for the first time the Orange Port of call, a coastal race that gathers the participants, at night in an area away from the Village under a marquee. In 2013, the EDHEC Sailing Cup and the Intercollegiate Offshore Regatta, organized by Storm Trysail Foundation and Larchmont Yacht Club, created a partnership, which offers to the winner of each regatta the whole cost of the participation in the other one.[4]

The Sea Trophy[edit]

Grand Surprise boats at race during the 37th Edition in Les Sables d'Olonne.

The Sea Trophy is the historical heart of the EDHEC Sailing Cup and remain the biggest Trophy of the EDHEC Sailing Cup. Created in 1969, the competition gathers each year more than 180 boats. The French Sailing Federation (FFVoile) national race committee supervises the race.[5] The race is open to all monohull boats with a Length Over All between 8 and 16 meters (approximately 25 to 50 feet) with a rating of 14 to 33.5 net handicap are admitted as well as Longtze boats. The three common boats used are Grand Surprise (around 40 boats), J/80 (around 40 boats) and Longtze (around 10 boats). The competition is divided in several rankings: the Overall Ranking, a 100% Student and the 100% International, and each competition is rewarded by different prices.

The other Trophies[edit]

The Land Trophy[edit]

The Land Trophy was created in 1994. It is an adventure racing that gives the opportunity to participants to discover the local hinterland. More than 150 teams of four or five are competing in several sports such as Mountain bike, Running, Orienteering, Canoeing, Zip-line or Abseiling. To broaden this Trophy there are two different courses, a discovery one and an expert one. A bivouac is organized during the week with several activities. It’s a key moment of the week for the participants that spend an amazing night is an friendly and special atmosphere.

The Sand Trophy[edit]

Created in 2007, the Sand Trophy is the symbol of the atmosphere on the Village. Teams of 5 to 9 rent a stand to represent their school and sponsors and may organize activities in it. With competitions of beach soccer, beach rugby and beach volleyball during the day, and bodegas in the evening, the competitors are all the time on the Village with teammates and other teams.

The Air Trophy[edit]

The latest Trophy is a competition of kitesurfing and windsurfing. The particularity of this event is that it is a team-competition, the only one in France, in a festive atmosphere. The windsurfing competition is divided in a Race and a Freestyle contests, whereas the kitesurfing will be divided in a Race, a Freestyle and a Boardercross contests.

The Village[edit]

La Rochelle Harbour during the 38th Edition.

First installed in 1987, the EDHEC Sailing Cup Village is the place where all teams, sponsors and visitors meet. With a 20,000m2surface, it is composed of several parts:[6] The institutional village: a place where all the partners managed stands with several animations for students and animators; The Official Club: where the official partners organized cocktails with students; The International Club is a dedicated area for international crews where they can enjoy special activities such as food-tastings of local products brought by the crews from their countries; A medical room with a hundred of specialists (osteopaths, physiotherapists, podiatrists and doctors); A 300m2 bar/restaurant; The “seabercafé” with a bar and computers in free-access; A Great Marquee with parties where perform DJs such as Kavinsky or Laurent Wolf; The Sand Trophy fields A wide range of activities and animations are organized to entertain the participants all along the week from bungee jumping and concerts to sailing simulator.


It is an event organized by students for students. Every year 50 EDHEC Business School students (in Lille, France) take up the challenge of organizing the leading student sporting event in Europe. The entire event is organized by student, from the logistic to the communication of the event and its 4 trophies. Organized in three divisions -Communication, Logistic, and Sports- and a head office, the association works likes a real SME, with presidents that devote their whole gap year to this mission.


Environmental Commitment

Great environmental stakes are arisen by an event of such extent. That is why each year the EDHEC Sailing Cup makes eco-friendlier steps (reduction of the CO2 consumption, sorting of rubbish). It tries to raise participants’ awareness regarding these issues by the signature of a charter. The Eco-Cup Service encourages also participants to spend a good week while respecting the environment.


The EDHEC Sailing Cup has organized days to raise people awareness about sailability. For the first time several Match Racing demonstrations on boats made for disabled persons have been organized in Brest for the 45th edition.

External links[edit]