Your First Time Round The Island Race

3,302 views  |   February 8th, 2017 

Round the Island Race 2019 - join the crewJoin the FCS crew in 2019!


If you’ve taken your Competent Crew course and are looking to have your first adventure then get a taste of ocean racing this summer by circumnavigating the Isle of Wight.

The Round the Island Race is organised by the Island Sailing Club and has become a regular challenge for many people. You’ll join a crew of 12 and an experienced FCS skipper who’ll help you all make this a winning day.

We have three yachts entering in the Race in 2019 and you can book your weekend by calling the office on 0203 006 3717 or purchasing a place here.

The Pleasure of Sailing and Racing

Half of the pleasure is that you’re in the same race as the champions of the seas, sailing yachts of various calibers, competing to be the fastest around the Island.

Your crew will have mini battles to fight between the ships in your class and even if you are not a competitive person, by the end of the day you’ll be straining to get an extra knot out of your sails to beat your closest rival.

The other half of the pleasure is Friday and Saturday night when you mingle with sailors from around the world in Cowes, swapping yarns and soaking up the atmosphere generated by the crew of a massive fleet.

See the full detials here: Round the Island Race 2019

A Weekend of Sailing and Socialising

The Round The Island Race race is held on the Saturday but we make a whole weekend of it with some training and ship acclimatisation on Friday in Portsmouth, socialising and celebrating with the rest of the fleet in Cowes on Saturday night and then on Sunday it is a leisurely sail back to Portsmouth.

Friday is a 10am start, meeting the skipper and crew mates. The evening is spent in Cowes after a day at sea and planning for the big event.

Almost everything is included in the price from race entry fees, onboard food, personal insurance, loan of waterproofs, safety equipment, mooring fees, fuel and gas.

How Race Day Unfurls

It is an early start and as the sun rises over the Solent the first of the boats begin the race. You are part of 1,600 strong fleet and it will take the organisers at Cowes close to two hours to get all the ships over the starting line.

This 50nm course is sailed by ships old and new, weekend sailors or Olympic heroes and the first landmark is the notorious Needles rocks. Then it is on to St Catherine’s Lighthouse, the southernmost point on the course that marks half way.

You’ll then sail across Sandown Bay, hopefully looking back at the amazing sight of all those boats following you. The finish line hoves into view after you have passed Bembridge Ledge and the Solent Forts and soon you’ll be able to say you’ve completed the Round the Island Race.

The Benefits of Rounding the Island

Taking part in this race is a great feeling, no matter how many times you have made the journey, as each occasion is different, each crew has something new to offer and the weather conditions always variable.

For one day you are focused on the race, testing the skills you have learned and finding out what you need to hone next. Working with a mixed variety of fellow sailors you see how they cope and begin to experience life on board a racing vessel.

This is an invaluable experience for when you step up to longer trips such as a channel hop or maybe Norwegian voyage, or something more adventurous such as the ARC Rally and other Atlantic challenges.

If this is your first time you are bound to have questions so why not give the FCS crew a call. They can assess your ability and advise you on whether or not you need an extra course. Have a look at this course progression chart if you want a refresh on what is available.

Book your place in the FCS crew here: Round the Island Race 2019

Posted by: First Class Sailing


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