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Photo: Cowes RNLI

A man in his 60s has tragically died following a racing incident during Cowes Week earlier on today (Friday).

As first reported by Island Echo, emergency services rushed to Trinity Landing, Cowes at around 11:35 after a man was thrown overboard whilst racing on the Solent to the north of East Cowes. It’s understood he was dragged along by the RS Elite class yacht’s main sheet.

The casualty was plucked out of the water by an eagle-eyed competitor who jumped into the water from the yacht ‘Riff Raff’. The injured man was then rushed to the landing point at Cowes Parade by a RIB under escort by Cowes RNLI, who had been tasked to the incident by Solent Coastguard.

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It’s at Trinity Landing that coastguard officers from Ventnor and paramedics transferred the male into an awaiting ambulance, which was then escorted to St Mary’s Hospital at speed by Police. A paramedic from Coastguard Rescue 175 helicopter had been lowered down to give medical assistance.

Despite the best efforts of paramedics and doctors the man was pronounced dead at hospital.

Next of kin have been informed and are being supported by specialist officers. The man’s death is not being treated as suspicious and investigations are ongoing.

UPDATE @ 16:49 – Cowes Week Limited, organisers of Lendy Cowes Week have issued a statement this afternoon. It reads:

“The team at Lendy Cowes Week are extremely sad to confirm the death of one of our competitors while racing here today (Friday 10th August).

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“The casualty was quickly transferred to shore by an event safety boat. Medical assistance was waiting on shore and the casualty was then taken by ambulance to St Mary’s Hospital, Newport, where he was pronounced dead. Next of kin have been informed.

“The team at Lendy Cowes Week are deeply saddened by this news and our thoughts are with the family at this difficult time”.

The planned fireworks and aerobatic displays are said to be going ahead as planned this evening.

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