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If there's one race you do, make it Round the Island!

Author: Jo Bowden   Date: 09:43 Saturday 8 Apr 2023

The sun has finally made an appearance and the days are getting longer! We can feel the anticipation of the sailing season at an all-time high and many plans are afoot for on-the-water racing thrills. Make sure that the 1st July is firmly in your calendar for the iconic Round the Island Race. It's Britain's Favourite race for hundreds of reasons, and if you need a reminder watch the 2022 highlights!

We're delighted with the range of boats that have entered the race so far - including our 2022 Line Honours and Gold Roman Bowl winner GP42 Dark'n'Stormy and 366 cruising boats that are taking advantage of the free rating system which the Island Sailing Club offers (ISCRS). Check out your competition here.

Enter today! It's simple to enter, and if you've entered before, you can use our pre-filled entry form containing all your details to save you time. Contact the Race Team on if you haven't received your pre-filled form by email yet.


James Harayda has entered his Open 60 Gentoo and he will be racing with some of his team and guests who support the Gentoo Sailing Team programme. We asked him what his Race Goal is for this year's race:

"Our aim is to have a good time and enjoy the racing, excitement, and beautiful views witnessed along the course. I am, however, a very competitive person, so inside me the line honours fire will be burning bright. This is always an objective racing Gentoo amongst rated fleets. On a course like this, it's tricky to pull this off, not just because the competition is so high, but the nature of sailing an IMOCA on a tidal inshore course like this means we cannot benefit from the tidal relief, small wind shifts, and shorter routes that many of the smaller boats can. Excuses aside, if we sail a clean race and can get our bow ahead of the traffic at the start, I think we are in a good place to achieve this result!"


Charlie McKenzie from San Francisco, watched the start of the windy 2016 race and decided then that he wanted to compete in the race. Recently, he bought a Nordship 40 DS in Ireland, renamed it Doña Marinita, and is planning to sail it over to Cowes to compete in his first Round the Island Race.

Charlie said: "I am looking forward to sailing with friends that I have met in different parts of the world and racing in the Solent which has such a great maritime tradition. My Race Goal for the race is to beat some of the professional crews. Given that the boat has tired sails, the crew has never sailed together, and the boat design is of a cruising nature we have an alternate goal of sailing hard, enjoying the spectacle, telling stories and jokes, and eating well. There's a promise to cook Mexican Street tacos with an English flair as one of the meals!"


Need some more crew? Like to find a boat to crew on? Try out our Crew Search forum here.


Helly Hansen, our Official Clothing Partner, are again launching a great capsule collection as well as kitting out more than 150 volunteers and organisers for the event. The collection incorporates some of the brand's favourite technical pieces for the marine and water sports industry, including a HP 1⁄2 Zip Pullover, Crew Vest and Club Hoodie for both men and women. All garments feature the race logo and will be available to order by the end of May (from the event website and Cowes Store).

This year's hero product is the HH half-zip pullover which is built for high-speed sailing adventures. Comfortable, easy to pull on and off and versatile, it can be used as a standalone or second layer. The pullover is made with recycled double-knit polyester, which has been upgraded with chemical-free sun protection using the planet-friendly S.Café® process. S.Café® fabric technology infuses the fabric with used coffee grounds creating everlasting sun protection, as well as making the pullover quick-dry and odour-resistant.


Our Race Partner, Sailing Today with Classic Yachts & Yachting and Classic Boat magazine, are offering all competitors and friends of the race a fantastic subscription offer - subscribe today and receive 6 issues for just £14.99 - saving up to 49%. Plus, receive a FREE copy of the Yachting Year 2023 Annual worth £7.99. More details here.


We are delighted that the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust is once again our Official Race Charity. The Trust takes young people sailing to inspire them to believe in a brighter future living through and beyond cancer. And this year the charity celebrates its 20th anniversary having been launched by the history-making yachtswoman in July 2003.

On that first trip, five young people from Great Ormond Street Hospital sailed with the charity for the first time in Cowes. Since then, almost 2,900 young people from across the UK have benefitted from the Trust's transformational sailing and outdoor adventures.

Frank Fletcher, Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust CEO, said: "Hundreds of young people living through and beyond cancer have been given the chance to believe in a brighter future thanks to the long-term partnership with Round the Island Race since 2005 and the wonderful crews that support us. We are incredibly grateful for your continued support this year."

For more information visit or follow @EMCTrust on social media.


We are proud to organise this iconic race and would like to offer all the competitors an exclusive membership offer. Please use the link here to find out all the benefits of the Club and details of the offer. Emma Pain, our Membership Officer, would be delighted to answer any questions, please call her on +44 (0)1983 296621 or email