Seven hours after her start in the JPMorgan Asset Management Round the Island Race, the New Zealand boat Cityindex Maximus completed the 50 mile course around the Isle of Wight and took the Observer Trophy for the first monohull boat to finish.
Early in her race, as the front of the fleet approached Hurst the SE breeze went very light, first in mid-channel where Nuku Hiva
slowed, whilst 'Nokia Enigma' and 'Full Pelt' came in fast up the mainland side. Soon however all boats parked just after Hurst Castle whilst the tide continued to sweep them west. By Warden buoy, a SE breeze began to fill in and all the boats began moving again, those in the middle this time picking the breeze up first. A reach to the Needles saw Nuku Hiva 2
pass her ORMA stable mate and she was first round just before 1000, followed by Maximus
second, Nuku Hiva
third and then Pindar
and 'Nokia Enigma'. The breeze held as the leaders set off on the beat for St Cat's. But behind the leaders the wind in the west Solent remained extremely light and fickle, sometimes from the north, sometimes the west, sometimes the south-east!
Just after 1145, Nuka Hiva 2
rounded St Cat's about 4 minutes ahead of Cityindex Maximus
, with Nokia Enigma
' next. The breeze soon swung to the north-east and dropped very light, so a slow beat ensued up to Dunnose and across Sandown Bay, where Cityindex Maximus
took the lead, followed by Nokia Enigma
, with the two multihulls in 4th and 5th. Behind them, more than 300 of the smaller boats were still struggling to get through Hurst and down to the Needles.
By 1345, Cityindex Maximus
was round Bembridge Ledge as the breeze picked up again, spinnakering away to the Forts, followed by the rest of that lead group. An hour later, she crossed the finish line in Cowes, just 51 seconds ahead of Nuka Hiva 2