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An iconic institution of the Principality, the Automobile Club de Monaco organises the country’s famous motor racing events, including the Monaco Grand Prix and the Rallye Monte-Carlo.

It was in 1890 that the forerunner to the Automobile Club de Monaco, Sport Vélocipédique Monégasque (VCM, the Monegasque Cycling Sport Association), was formed, with Prince Albert I serving as honorary president. As four-wheeled vehicles driven by combustion engines grew in popularity, the association – now known as the Sport Automobile et Vélocipédique de Monaco (SAVM, Monaco Automobile and Cycling Sport Association) – organised the first Rallye Monte-Carlo in 1911. Competitors were to set off from several cities across Europe (Berlin, Paris, Vienna, etc.) and converge in Monaco. The “Monte-Carlo” is thus the doyen of car rallies.

In 1925, the newly formed Automobile Club de Monaco (ACM) demonstrated its international ambitions. In a bid to be admitted to the Association Internationale des Automobile Clubs Reconnus (AIACR, International Association of Recognised Automobile Clubs), the forerunner to the FIA, the ACM organised a Grand Prix within the country and, therefore, right in the heart of the city.

A unique motor racing street circuit, requiring total concentration from drivers… Since the first event in 1929, which was won by William Grover (known as Williams), the Monaco Grand Prix has become the stuff of legend, crowning the sport’s greatest drivers, including Juan Manuel Fangio, Alain Prost, Ayrton Senna, Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton.

© ACM
© Direction de la Communication

“In terms of reputation, the Formula 1 Grand Prix is the oldest race after Monza. From a televisual perspective, it is exceptional. I think that these are the best pictures of the Championship.”

Michel Boeri, President of the ACM since 1972, speaking to Code Sport.

Since 1997, the Automobile Club de Monaco has also organised the Historic Monaco Grand Prix every two years and, since 2015, the Formula E Grand Prix, which is generally held on an alternating basis with the latter. Exceptionally, Monaco will host all three races in 2021. “Organising three competitions within the space of just a month will be a major first for all of us at the ACM,” says Christian Tornatore, the General Commissioner.

© Direction de la Communication
© Direction de la Communication / Michael Alesi

Throughout its history, the Automobile Club has built an international reputation based on its innovations, including the creation of a corps of volunteer road and track marshals who ensure the safety of the Grand Prix and Rallye Monte-Carlo – a small army of around 700 men.

The ACM headquarters, which have been located at 23 Boulevard Albert I since 1958, are home to a restaurant and bar as well as private rooms for its 6,000 members, an advertising agency and a rental centre.

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