Don't miss any of the action from the 2017 Rolex Fastnet Race with our essential spectator guide, plus follow progress from the race and all the news from the finishers in Plymouth with Yachting World's exclusive coverage

The Rolex Fastnet Race makes for a spectacular start, followed by 600-miles worth of tight, tough competition. Here’s how to follow the 2017 Fastnet and keep up-to-date with all the action…

The race starts from one of world’s most famous yachting locations: the Royal Yacht Squadron in Cowes on the Isle of Wight on Sunday, 6 August 2017.

Fastnet TV will cover the entire start sequence live. It will be streamed online from and and on RORC Facebook live with expert commentary of the build up and for the entire start sequence, right through to the fleet leaving the Solent.

Spectators watch the fleet set out from Cowes. Kurt Arrigo/Rolex

Fastnet Radio will be broadcasting on the Cowes Radio frequency 87.7FM on start day, Sunday 6 August, and simulcast with Fastnet Radio in Plymouth on 87.9FM.

There will also be a podcast from the skippers’ briefing, held on Saturday 5 August.

The start sequence begins at 1100 (BST) for the 48th edition. The multihulls go off first, followed by the IMOCA 60s and Class 40s.

1100 Multihull
1110 IMOCA 60 and Class40
1120 IRC 4
1140 IRC 3
1200 IRC 2
1220 IRC 1
1240 IRC Zero & VO65

Hurst Castle on the mainland can offer a great vantage point of the race start and boats leaving the Solent. Photo: Kurt Arrigo/Rolex Fastnet Race

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The best vantage points of the start will be along Cowes Green and Egypt Esplanade on the Isle of Wight.

The live Fastnet Radio commentary will also be broadcast from speakers along Cowes Parade and The Green.

As the fleet funnels out of the Solent there will also be a good chance to see the yachts from Yarmouth on the Isle of Wight, and Hurst Castle on the mainland. Further along the coast Anvil Point, St Alban’s Head, and Portland Bill should each give a good view of the race on its outbound leg.


Yachting World magazine will be covering the race from Cowes to Plymouth, with news, insight from the skippers, and video updates on our dedicated Rolex Fastnet Race page.

Event organisers RORC have a dedicated Rolex Fastnet Race minisite where you can find the latest images and positions of the fleet, blogs from the boats, web updates and daily updates. 


You can follow the Rolex Fastnet Race online with the fleet tracker. Yellowbrick trackers are fitted to every yacht so you can see each boat’s position along the course.

View by class or select your favourites to follow friends and family, check out their boat speed and weather conditions in real time.


Armchair sailors will be able to test their skills on the same course as competitors in the 2017 Rolex Fastnet Race by playing the Virtual Fastnet Race. Details on the race minisite shortly.

Article by Helen Fretter at Yachting World