Archive for the Isle of Wight Category

Cowes Week

Posted in Isle of Wight, SeaMark Buoys on August 1, 2013 by Seaflex

3rd – 10th August 2013

Cowes Week is one of the longest running and largest sailing regattas in the world. With 40 races each day, up to 1,000 boats and 8,500 competitors from Olympic champions to weekend sailors, it marks the peak of the racing and sailing social calendar.


Start/finish line at Cowes Week

Seaflex’s QHSE Manager, Ian Margham, will be racing during the week and with Seaflex providing the turning marks as well as the start and finish buoys off the Royal Yacht Squadron, he will find himself meeting a number of the company’s SeaMark inflatable buoys.

All races start from the Royal Yacht Squadron at the mouth of the very busy Cowes River, with ferries, freighters, oil tankers and cruise liners following the channel along the Solent, as well as hundreds (and hundreds!) of yachts. This can lead to some very near misses as wa shown in 2011 when a yacht was dismasted by an oil tanker.

Most of the time the event runs like clockwordk, but then it has been running since 1826, so they’ve had plenty of practice.

The event sponsors, Aberdeen Asset Management, have all the racing and social events on their website:

Round the Island Race

Posted in Isle of Wight with tags , , , , on June 3, 2013 by Seaflex

The Round the Island Race is an annual event held  in June and is a major part of the rich sailing tradition of the Isle of Wight. Sponsoring the event this year was JP Morgan Asset Management.

Round the Island Race

Rounding the Needles Photo by Patrick Eden –

Now in its 82nd year over 1,400 yachts and around 16,000 sailors take part making it one of the largest yacht races in the world – and the fourth largest participation sporting event in the UK.

Competitors come from all over the UK, Europe, the USA and around the world to sail the 50 nautical mile course around the Isle of Wight, starting and finishing at Cowes.  Most boats take hours to finish the course, but the record set by the professional sailors is 3hrs 53mins 05secs for a monohull, set by Mike Slade on ICAP Leopard in 2008, and 3hrs 08mins 29secs for a multihull boat set by Francis Joyon in 2001.

A Record Breaking Day

At least that was the case until this year’s event on Saturday 1st June. UK sailor Ben Ainslie, winner of four Olympic golds, knocked 16 mins and 14 secs off Francis Joyon’s 2001 record with a time of 2hr 52min 15sec on a 45-foot wing-powered catamaran, imaginatively named “AC45 JP Morgan BAR”.

Round the Island Race 2013

‘Back of the Wight’ – Photo by Patrick Eden –

Then Mike Slade, on the 100-foot yacht “Leopard”, broke his own monohull record by 9 minutes 45 seconds in a time of 3hr 43min 50sec.

With Seaflex based in Cowes at the heart of the event, it’s not surprising that some of the team would be involved. This year the company was represented by Business Development Manager, Ben Board sailing on ‘Skibereen’ – a Fastnet 34 sloop built in 1975. Ben and his crew finished a creditable 289th out of nearly 1,500 competitors, even though Ben insists, “We’re not serious racers . . .”