This week, the tenth TORTOUR multi-day nonstop ultracycling event took place. Representing the Laureus Foundation Switzerland , seven teams from IWC Schaffhausen were among the competitors. For the second time, IWC CEO Christoph Grainger-Herr was present at the starting line. Through a crowdfunding campaign the participants raised until now a total of CHF 60,000 for a social sports project run by the Laureus Foundation Switzerland.
You’d be forgiven for thinking that the name “TORTOUR” almost sounds like “torture”, and for good reason: in the highest difficulty category of the race, 1000 kilometres and a number of Swiss Alpine passes lie between the start and the finish in Schaffhausen. The participants are on the go day and night, meaning that their support teams also need to be available around the clock.
Christoph Grainger-Herr, CEO of IWC Schaffhausen : “The TORTOUR unites competitive sport, extreme endurance and team spirit in a unique way, and for a good cause. I was thrilled to see so many members of the IWC family at the starting line ready to support Laureus, especially in the 150th anniversary year of our company”. The team with Grainger-Herr, Swiss professional cyclist Simon Zahner and IWC watchmaker Samuel Vuillemez finished the “CHALLENGE”, the medium-length course of 550 kilometres, in 6th place.
SEVEN IWC TEAMS COMPLETED THE TORTOUR
The cyclists from the AMG ROTWILD team and sports enthusiasts from among the staff of the watch manufacturer competed in the seven IWC teams. Jürgen Kallfass, who also took part for IWC and Laureus, displayed particular fighting spirit. He set off as the only IWC team to enter in the “TORTOUR” category, involving the whole race route. In the run-up to the race, the participants canvassed for support on a crowdfunding platform. The donations, totalling CHF 60,000, so far, will go towards funding the sponsorship project “Laureus Girls in Sports”, run by the Laureus Foundation Switzerland. Since girls are less involved in sports (among other things) than boys, Laureus is using sport to promote self-confidence and character development in 11 to 17 year olds. As with the previous year, a prologue took place at Rhine Falls on Thursday. IWC has been a sponsor of the TORTOUR since it was first held in 2009.
LAUREUS FOUNDATION SWITZERLAND
The Laureus Foundation Switzerland was established by IWC Schaffhausen and Mercedes-Benz in 2006 as an offshoot of the international foundation “Laureus Sport for Good”. The aim of the Laureus Foundation Switzerland is to enrich the lives of as many children as possible in Switzerland, step by step. The focus is not on achievement, but rather on the enjoyment of sports and other social activities. Every year, Laureus supports more than ten thousand children in Switzerland through four social sports projects.
The TORTOUR is the world’s largest multi-day ultra-cycling event for both professional cyclists and ambitious amateurs. The 1000 km non-stop bicycle race through multiple Alpine passes around all of Switzerland was first held in 2009. This demanding event enjoys continued popularity. The race is organised by TORTOUR GmbH with headquarters in Schaffhausen.