Ellen MacArthur MBE will compete in this Saturday’s Round The Island Race, Britain’s largest and arguably most popular yacht race, which starts from Cowes, Isle of Wight, at 08:30 BST
Ellen MacArthur MBE will compete in this Saturday’s Round The Island Race, Britain’s largest and arguably most popular yacht race, which starts from Cowes, Isle of Wight, at 08:30 BST.
MacArthur will race aboard her famed monohull, Kingfisher, in which she became the fastest woman around the world and claimed second in the Vendée Globe Single Handed Round the World Race, astounding the boating world and capturing the public’s imagination with her inspirational achievement.
MacArthur’s dynamic high profile racing yacht will join more than 1,600 other yachts lining up for this year?s Round the Island Race 2002, a 50 nautical mile race course anti-clockwise around the Isle of Wight, which starts at the Royal Yacht Squadron starting line at Cowes.
Amongst the competitors will be Route du Rhum competitor Yvan Bourgnon aboard his 60 feet multihull, Rexona Men; BT Global Challenge winning skipper Conrad Humphreys, whose crew will include the Patron of his Vendée Globe 2004 campaign, actor Jeremy Irons; triple Olympic medallist Rodney Pattisson in Supertri, who last year set a new race record in the Francis Joyon’s trimaran, Dexia Eure et Loir; Vendee Globe competitor Josh Hall in Pindar; the two Farr 52s, GBR Challenge chairman Peter Harrison’s own boat, Chernikeeff 2, and the student-crewed Bear of Britain, owned by Kit Hobday and Tim Louis, overall winner at last year’s America’s Cup Jubilee; as well as GBR Challenge yacht designer Jo Richards in one of his own designs, Full Pelt, a record-breaker last year.
Also competing will be the Formula 40 trimaran ProVu, formally “Biscuits Cantreau”, winner of the Formula 40 circuit in the hands of Jean le Cam and also sailed to victory by Roland Jordain. The 40-foot Kevlar and carbon fibre trimaran was designed to be the fastest and most technically advanced Formula 40 in the world; now owned by Peter Bryant it is set to return to national and international competition and will use this year’s Round the Island Race as a shakedown and evaluation exercise.
Blind sailor Arthur Greatrex, who with partially-sighted Gary Murphy won the European disabled championship last year, will also take on this year?s Round the Island Race. Greatrex will be joining Murphy and skipper Alex Duff, a paraplegic sailor who has just passed his Yachtmaster certificate at the UKSA at Cowes, to race aboard Egret, a Colgate 26 from the UKSA.
The 1,600-strong fleet will race anti-clockwise from Cowes, passing Yarmouth and The Needles before heading around the south of the Island. Thousands of spectators are expected to line the shore to watch the fantastic spectacle.