Brewin Dolphin RS Elite International Grand Prix

This year the Isle of Wight will see the largest gathering to date of RS Elite keelboats when the Royal Yacht Squadron at Cowes hosts the Brewin Dolphin RS Elite international Grand Prix, incorporating both the RS Elite UK National Championship and an International Invitational Regatta for overseas entrants. The event takes place from Thursday 6th to Sunday 12th July 2020 with a target entry of 60 boats. Headline sponsor is the UK financial services group Brewin Dolphin. The Italian sailing clothing company Toio, which has a retail outlet in Cowes, is official clothing supplier.

The RS Elite is a 21st Century interpretation of the traditional racing keelboat found in Cowes and other locations in the Solent area and beyond. It has become an established racing class in Cowes and has been a regular in Cowes Week for the last 15 years. Other fleets have grown up at Hayling Island, Burnham-on-Crouch, Belfast Lough and Srangford Lough in the UK and internationally the class has spread to Antigua, Norway, Italy, Germany and North America.

The RS Elite is a strict one-design so racing is close and competitive. The boat has become popular with many top sailors including Olympic medallists, world and national champions from other classes. Entry is currently open and details are available on the event website. The entry fee of £300 includes craning and berthing fees.

Racing will be on courses in the central Solent, starting at a committee boat, with three races per day on the first three days and a single race on the final Sunday. On a day to be nominated by the Race Committee, there will be a charity fund-raising “Race to the Start” when spectators ashore will be able to watch this highly competitive fleet jostling for position on the Famous Squadron Line as the cannons boom.

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