75 years of round the island

2006 a special year for the JPMorgan Asset Management Round the Island Race

Thursday January 5th 2006, Author: Flavia Bateson, Location: United Kingdom
This year the Island Sailing Club will be celebrating a special anniversary - 75 years since the Club held its first race round the Isle of Wight. From a modest beginning, when 25 boats were entered, the race now regularly attracts over 1,600, with a record turnout of 1,813 boats in 1989, the Club’s centenary year.

To celebrate the 75th anniversary the Island Sailing Club will be introducing two new feeder races in 2006. Both will finish in the Solent with starts in St Helier, Jersey and Brixham, Devon.

“At JPMorgan Asset Management, we are delighted to continue our association with the Round the Island Race as the title sponsor of this prestigious event for the second year running. To help celebrate the event’s 75th Anniversary, JPMorgan Asset Management will be introducing competitor entertainment to Cowes over the race weekend for the first time. As one of the world’s leading investment managers, teamwork, innovation and a desire to be the best are essential to our success. That is why we are committed to supporting the sport of sailing,” explained Campbell Fleming, Head of UK, JPMorgan Asset Management

The original idea came from ISC member Major Cyril Windeler, who suggested a handicap race for smaller boats. He may well, at that time, have been enjoying a gentle joke at the expense of the Royal Yacht Squadron whose events were restricted to yachts over 30 tons!

In 1931, it was indeed a small boat which won - the 22ft Cornish fishing boat Merry Conceit - and often the race continues to run true to Major Windeler’s original aspirations. This was so in 2005 when the 27 year old quarter-tonner Purple Haze came up trumps for skipper Tony Dodd, who was awarded the coveted Gold Roman Bowl.

Even during his term as Prime Minister, The Rt. Honourable Sir Edward Heath KG, MBE, MP was a keen supporter of sailing. He won the Round the Island Race four times; three of them in consecutive years in the early 1970s on Morning Cloud II and Morning Cloud III. In 1980 he took the top trophy once more in Morning Cloud IV.

Competitors now come from all over the south coast of England as well as from much further afield, even the USA and New Zealand, making this a truly world-class event. The Island Sailing Club is expecting a record turnout for the 75th anniversary, with the added attraction of watching the Volvo Ocean Race restart from Portsmouth on Friday 2 June at 1730 hours. This will head west along the Solent, past the flotilla gathering in Cowes for the JPMorgan Asset Management Round the Island Race the following day.

On-line entries for the JPMorgan Asset Management Round the Island Race can now be made via the dedicated website www.roundtheisland.org.uk.

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