Audio slideshow: 80 years of the Round the Island Race

To mark the 80th anniversary of the Round the Island yacht race, a new exhibition that charts the history of the race with some of the most memorable images taken of action on the water over the years, opens later.

The race was first run in 1931 - over a 50 mile (80km) course, clockwise around the Isle of Wight.

It has grown into one of the country's biggest mass-sporting events, which regularly attracts more than 1,700 boats and around 16,000 sailors.

The race pits Olympic and professional sailors against keen amateurs with a unique handicap system meaning even small boats can win the coveted Gold Roman Bowl.

Take a look at some of the photographs and hear the stories of Rod Nicholls, commodore of the Island Sailing Club; Olympic gold medallist Ben Ainslie; and competitors Fiona Rogers and Peter Nicholson.

This year's race takes place on Saturday, June 25.


Round the Island in 80 Years is now on at Quay Arts Centre, Newport. It moves to the Cowes Yacht Haven over the race weekend, 24-26 June.

All images subject to copyright. Click 'show captions' for details.

Newsreel audio courtesy Pathe News. Slideshow production by Stephen Stafford. Publication date 14 June 2011.

Related:

JP Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Race

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