Rolex is extending its support of the Royal Ocean Racing Club's Fastnet Race for five more years with a deal that reaches to 2021.
The partnership between the Swiss watchmaker and the British yacht-racing club dates from 2001.
"We are delighted with the continuation of our association with Rolex," Commodore Mike Greville of the racing club said in a statement. "Our relationship with Rolex is a true partnership, and in the past 11 years we have seen the Rolex Fastnet grow in international stature, strength and popularity.”
The biennial 608-nautical mile race has been a sporting institution since it was first held in 1925, and the title sponsorship of Rolex during the past six editions has raised the race's profile. In the previous two editions, the limit of 300 boats was reached within a few weeks of the entry process opening.
Organizers said coping with burgeoning demand and ensuring that the interests of all competitors are properly met have been priorities for the racing club and Rolex.
The next Rolex Fastnet Race will start Aug. 11, 2013, from the Royal Yacht Squadron in Cowes. Entries for the race will open in January.