Line honours went to Julian Linton’s Grand Prix multihull ‘N.R.B’, who completed the circumnavigation of the Island in a time of 4 hours 19 minutes. The first monohull to cross the finish line was Ian Atkins’ GP42 ‘Dark’n’Stormy’, in a time of 4 hours 54 minutes.
Dave Atkinson, Race Director said:
“The race started under perfect race conditions with a south westerly 15 knot breeze. The Class 0 yachts headed down the Solent to the west and showed some close racing. It was a fantastic sight to watch the huge fleet of all types of boat, families and professionals, following at ten-minute intervals”.
RNLI and Independent lifeboats from around the Isle of Wight were all afloat on Saturday, with no less than 4 rescues in the Western Solent.
Yarmouth RNLI’s volunteer crew left Yarmouth Harbour to rendezvous with lifeboat crews from Lymington RNLI, Freshwater Independent Lifeboat and Mudeford RNLI. While heading west out of the Solent in south westerly winds gusting up to 25 knots through Hurst narrows, the lifeboat teams received their first tasking.
At 10:04 a call for assistance was received from 2 trimarans that had collided near to the Shingles Bank. Once on scene with Yarmouth RNLI, Freshwater Independent Lifeboat escorted one of the trimarans that had suffered damage to the safety of Yarmouth Harbour. The other casualty was able to sail unaided. Both vessels retired from the race.
The next call for help came at 10:18 from a yacht in Alum Bay, where a crew member had sustained a head injury. Yarmouth RNLI put a paramedic on board to assess the casualty. Both the paramedic and the injured crew member were transferred to Lymington RNLI lifeboat and taken to Yarmouth Harbour where they were met by a waiting ambulance.
This released Yarmouth Lifeboat to attend a yacht approximately half a mile north of the Needles that had been involved in a collision and was taking on water. Mudeford RNLI supported the rescue by putting their pump on board before then escorting the casualty back to Lymington.
At 11:44 Yarmouth RNLI received their final tasking for the day – they attended a yacht near to Scratchells Bay that had lost its rudder. Having ensured that there were no injuries, the vessel was handed over to the care of Freshwater Independent Lifeboat and safely towed to Lymington.
Over in the East Wight, things were much quieter for Bembridge RNLI, Sandown & Shanklin Independent Lifeboat and Ryde Inshore Rescue.
Bembridge Lifeboat responded to a Pan Pan call from a 52ft yacht at around 13:45 advising that a crew member had fallen whilst down below and had possibly injured his back. The All Weather Lifeboat went alongside and transferred 2 crew members to the yacht so they could check the casualty over. Having done this, their conclusion was that he had most probably cracked a rib. After offering some pain relief, the 2 lifeboat crew were transferred back to the ALB.
Ryde Inshore Rescue and Gosport and Fareham Inshore Rescue Service had their work cut out in the Eastern Solent with a total of 11 yachts running aground on RydeSands. Ryde Rescue 2 and GAFIRS responded to the 1st casualty at lunchtime but couldn’t get the stricken yacht off the bank due to a falling tide. The last grounding was at 18:15 with Ryde Rescue 1 providing assistance to at least 3 other competitor yachts.
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