Round the Island Race: Back-to-back wins for Eeyore

Despite the pandemic, the 90th anniversary edition of the Round the Island Race went ahead with 1200 boats taking part.

The Island Sailing Club put on a spectacular 90th anniversary party for Round the Island Race 2021.

Having been forced to cancel the 2020 edition of the Round the Island Race and with Covid 19 still causing some issues for large-scale events, it was impressive to see a huge fleet of over 1200 boats taking part.

The number of those still keen to take on the event, shows just how much people love the single day race around the Isle of Wight.

On the water there was everything from flat calm to 25 knot gusts, fog and sun. As with every Round the Island Race, nothing compares to the sight of the fleet stretched out around the stunning Isle of Wight coast.

Local Cowes boat Eeyore, an Alacrity 18 Bilge Keel, has secured back-to-back victories in the Round the Island Race and retained the prestigious Gold Roman Bowl which she has held since the 2019 race.

Owner and skipper of Eeyore, Jo Richards said: “The thing with Round the Island Race is that it’s like buses, you wait years and years and then two come along consecutively. Interesting race yesterday, we had a shocking first leg down to the Needles and luckily there was a little bit of a lull under the cliffs and we got back into our class and from then on it was really tight.

“When we got to Bembridge Ledge having got the rating list out we knew we had to finish a minute and a half ahead of one boat and three minutes ahead of another boat. It was pretty tense the whole way back and being the smallest boat in the fleet you’ve got no control if a 55ft boat sits on top of you.

“It was only when we got back to shore and people starting texting that we thought we might have won. A great day out.”

Meanwhile, the Alan Buchanan designed Cherete has won the Silver Gilt Roman Bowl, awarded to the first boat overall in the ISCRS divisions.

Owner and skipper of Cherete, Brian Haugh said: “We had a totally unexpected result and we were late getting to the start line. This was our tenth Round the Island Race, we had a great day and it felt like normality had resumed.”

Peter Cunningham’s multihull MOD70 PowerPlay was the first to finish the race with a time of 4hrs 11mins 01secs.

A light start to the race prevented any chance of beating the race record, which was set by PowerPlay, (under her previous name of Concise 10) in 2017 (2hrs 22mins and 23 secs).

PowerPlay finished this year’s race ahead of the ULTIM Actual and the 32m trimaran IDEC. T’ala owned by David Collins was the first monohull to finish the race with a time of 6hrs 11mins 36secs.

Visit the Round the Island Race website for more videos, images and a full list of results.


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Source: Yachting Monthly

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