Round The Island Race 2024

"Lexi" X4³ Race report

Close Video

Monday 17th June 2024

This years’ Round of Island Race this was one to remember!  We had been looking at the forecast and knew this would be a wild one.  Whilst making our way to the start line, we realised that a lot of boats had decided not to race.   Our start was 6:20am and going upwind to The Needles with wind-over-tide conditions, the fleet experienced bumpy conditions, but we were in the leading pack of our class.

The leg from Hurst Castle to Needles was spectacular and sustained 32kts winds, gusting to 38kts, seeing many boats retire.  After Needles, we had a long reach and the crew had more rest, we set up the outboard sheet on the heavy weather jib (thanks Jeremy Smart from North Sails).  This was a very fast leg, with boat speed continuously over 10-12kts.  A 41kt gust hit us and we peaked, surfing at 20.3kts down a big wave on a broad reach!!

It was wonderful to see my friend Simon on his X-442 ‘Alison Mary’ doing well in the challenging conditions (winds did not drop below 34 kts for a long time).  The reach from Ventor to Bembridge Ledge was enjoyable, the wind dropped to 25kts and sea state was more pleasant.  The crew stayed in good spirits, and we concentrated on overtaking more boats in the sprint to the finish.

The objectives for the day were simple; 1- stay safe, 2- have fun, 3- go fast.  So, mission complete, we did this in 7h 05m (with tide against most of the race) and my 5-man crew were absolutely brilliant.  On a tough day like this it’s the crew and boat that makes the difference, and Lexi was fast and strong.  I was never in doubt that anything would break on the boat.  Bring on 2025…!

1st – X-Yachts ISC Yacht Trophy.

1st – ISC Divison 4B

3rd – ISC Group 4

9th – ISC Overall

Pieter – Lexi -X43 MkII


Copyright Paul Wyeth

Copyright Ian Roman