Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Crazy Light Round The Island Race

J/111 sailboat
(Cowes, Isle of Wight, England)- The 2019 edition of the world-famous “Round The Island Race” in the United Kingdom, hosted by the Island Sailing Club in Cowes, Isle of Wight, may go down in history as one of the slowest ever for most of the fleet. The challenging 60.0nm race that goes around the Isle of Wight is by far the most popular race on any sailor’s social calendar all year long in the U.K., but this year it was celebrated with copious amounts of Pimms as most of the fleet motored back home to their anchorages- at least 75% of the fleet retired, which may be a record!

The forecast with scorching sun and no more than 15kts of wind was unlikely to create record-breaking conditions for the 1,253 entries. Nevertheless, with an ebbing tide and early morning east-south-easterly breeze, the fleet enjoyed a downwind spinnaker start, so the first leg to the Needles was reasonably swift for most of the fleet. However, the forecasted easing of the breeze to zero kts and a change from the easterly to a light westerly around 1400 to 1600 hours took its toll on the fleet. As it turned out, heading away from the island into more stable breeze was the best option. As one competitor described it, “basically, there was a big bubble of hot air above the island, which affected the wind, so those going too far inshore suffered the most.”
J/70 sailing Cowes Round Island Race
Excelling in the challenging conditions were the J/111s and J/122s in twenty-six boat IRC 1 division. Winning class by an astounding 35 minutes corrected was Cornell Riklin’s J/111 JITTERBUG, leading a near sweep of the top ten with six other J/teams in the hunt.  Taking third was Chris Jones And Louise Makin’s J/111 JOURNEYMAKER II, followed in 4th by the J/111 J4F (Frenchman Patrice Vidon) and Clive Miles’ J/122E JANGLE in 5th place. Then, seventh was George Willis & Stuart Sawyer’s J/122 BLACK DOG and eighth was Simon Bamford’s J/111 KESTREL.

Similarly, the quartet of J/112E’s in IRC 1C division nearly swept the top five in their thirty-one boat fleet. Second was David Franks’ LEON, third was Chaz Ivill’s DAVANTI TYRES, fourth was Jim Chalmers’ KNIGHT BUILD LTD, and fifth was Bruce Huber’s XANABOO.
J/111 sailing The Around The Island Race, Cowes, England
The J/109s and a J/99 took four of the top eight spots in the twenty-one boat IRC 2A Class.  Second was Christopher Preston’s J/109 JUBILEE, fourth was Chris Copeland’s J/109 JUKEBOX, sixth was James & John Owen’s J/99 JET, and eighth was Alan Beckheling’s J/109 RAF RED ARROW.

Nearly 60% of the 33 boat IRC 2 B Class were J/crews and, as a result, J/109s took 7 of the top 11 spots.  Second was Chris Burleigh’s JYBE TALKIN, fourth was Colin Walker & Nick Harris’ JURA, sixth was Harry Brewer’s SPACE 8, seventh was Chris Andrews’ JIGSAW, eighth was Bill Stock’s JENGU, tenth Steve Horne’s JAMBO, and 11th Richard Griffiths’ JOMALIA.
Fleet sailing past The Needles, Isle of Wight, England
Three of the top five in IRC 2D Class were J/crews.  Second was Ed Holton’s J/110 SHADES OF BLUE, third was Ralph Mason’s J/92 JABBERWOCK, and fifth was Bob Baker’s J/97 JAYWALKER.

Winning ISC 4A division was Ken Raby’s J/109 SQUIBS. Winning ISC 5B division was Andrew Norton’s J/100 TIDERACE with a family crew.

The J/70 class had four finishers, a triumph in its own right. Winning was Andrew Barraclough’s JENGA 8, second was Jack Davies’ YETI, third was Georgina Hill’s GENESTA.
J/122E sailing around the island race- Cowes, England
The J/80 class also had four finishers. Winning was Phil Lightbody’s JEDI, second was Simon Cameron’s JUNO, and third was Ross Bowdler’s JUSTIFY.

The J/88s had three finishers. Winning was Sam Cooper’s TIGRIS, second was Richard Cooper’s JONGLEUR, and third was Dirk Van Beek’s SABRIEL JR.

The overall J/Boats Trophy went to Riklin’s J/111 JITTERBUG. Second by less than 45 seconds corrected time was Alan Macleod & Andy Knowles’ J/92 SAMURAI J. Third was Jack Banks’ J/92 NIGHT JAR.  For more Round Island Race sailing information Add to Flipboard Magazine.