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30 June 2008, 11:18 am
Speedy Conditions For Round The Island Race
The fleet bear away under spinnaker from the Needles
The fleet bear away under spinnaker from the Needles

JPMorgan Asset Management Round the Island Race 2008
Cowes, Isle of Wight, Great Britain

With a brisk west-southwesterly holding steady for the first part of the day, Mike SLADE's ICAP Leopard was able to complete the 50 nautical mile JPMorgan Asset Management Round The Island Race at record speed
Such was ICAP Leopard's speed that Mike SLADE broke his own time set in 2001 racing Skandia Leopard, by over 12 minutes. He then went on to take a new time for the complete circumnavigation of the Isle of Wight, which is subject to ratification by the World Speed Sailing Record Council.

For the first start at 06:00, the sky was overcast and banks of mist rolled eastwards, particularly as the leaders headed for St Catherine's Point from The Needles in poor visibility.

SLADE commented on his return, "Well, it's awful having to get up in the middle of the night in order to beat our own record!

"Round the back of the Island we couldn't see far, but then we came round the eastern end and the sun came out. From there it was a wonderful trip home in the sunshine. The record looked touch and go on our way home, but we didn't know how many tacks it would take to make the finish line. I am delighted we have knocked 12 minutes off the WSSRC circumnavigation of the Island record.

"My son Max was pleased to drive the boat up the first leg."

Rob GREENHALGH was first home, in the Extreme 40 TeamOrigin. His time was outside the race record for multihulls but nonetheless he had an exciting race.

GREENHALGH said, "We had a fantastic day. The sailing was fast and hairy. We were on the upper limit. There was only a quarter mile visibility between The Needles and St Catherine's and we don't get the opportunity, on this type of boat, to look at any sophisticated navigation instruments. This is a great result to add to our current leading position in the iShares Cup. We will be back for the beginning of Skandia Cowes Week to compete in the next round."

With Rob on the helm, the rest of the crew included his brother Peter GREENHALGH, Julian CRESSANT and Matt CORNWELL.

A Grand Day Out

Twelve hours after the first start in the 2008 JPMorgan Asset Management Race and few very boats were left to cross the finish line in Cowes, which was already brimming with tired by happy sailors.

The day started overcast but breezy as the boats tacked down to The Needles. The main problem on the next leg, to St Catherine's Point, was visibility as banks of low fog rolled eastwards. The sea condition south of the Isle of Wight was variously described as grim, hairy, wild, lumpy and on the edge. As the leaders returned to the Solent however the sun came out and the wind lessened but became shifty, keeping everyone on their toes to the end.

The race usually favours either big or small boats, but the results overall in IRC showed a real mixture at the top of the leader board. First came a big boat from IRC0, Ran - TP52, followed by Darren MASTERS' diminutive quarter tonner Catch. Last year's Gold Roman Bowl winner Edward DONALD came third in his 25 foot Folkboat Madelaine with another TP52, Henri Lloyd Cutting Edge, eight seconds later on corrected time

The ISC Rated Class showed the top boat and winner of the Silver Gilt Roman Bowl as Sandpiper, Adrian CREEDY's Parker 235. Willem WESTER was second in his brand new Grand Soleil Antilope. He also wins the JPMorgan Asset Management Family Trophy, racing with his wife, daughter and granddaughter Emily aged 13. Twilight a 1961 Robb Lion design was third with Patrick MORETON. Just 22 seconds later on corrected time came the South Coast One Design Marbella (Mark TAYLOR).

JPMorgan Asset Management Round the Island Race -

Flavia Bateson (As Amended By ISAF)
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