The Round the Island Race is an annual one-day yacht race sailing 50 nautical miles around the Isle of Wight.
What is the Round the Island Race?
The Round the Island Race is an annual one-day yacht race sailing around the Isle of Wight, with the racing boats beginning in Cowes. It is the biggest yacht race in the world and the fourth biggest sporting event open to public participation in the UK after the London marathon and the Great North and South runs.
The race is organised by the Island Sailing Club, the first taking place in 1931 with 25 competing yachts. Apart from six years during World War II, it has taken place every year since building it’s annual competitors to over 1,700 boats and around 16,000 sailors.
How long is the Round the Island Race?
The course covers 50 nautical miles beginning at the north of the Isle of Wight in Cowes and runs westabout all the way back to Cowes. The majority of the competitors in the fleet will take several hours to complete the race, while others will do their best to break the current Round the Island Race records. The monohull boat record stands at 3 hours, 43 minutes and 50 seconds and the Round the Island Race multihull boat record at 2 hours 52 minutes and 15 seconds.
How is the Round the Island Race winner decided?
The winner is judged by the IRC system of handicapping sailboats and yachts depending on their class and receives the Gold Roman Bowl, while the yacht in second place is presented with the Silver Roman Bowl.
In 2007 JP Morgan Asset Management began sponsorship of the event in a deal lasting until 2016.
Photography: Thierry Martinez – thmartinez.com