Isle Of Sheppey Round the Island Race
Sailboat passing Kingsferry Bridge
Entry Form
Notice of Race
Sailing Instructions
Course Map
Past Winners
Video Clips
Press Cuttings
How to get here

Event organised by
IOS Sailing Club


IOS Race Logo 66th IOS Round the Island Race - 31 Aug / 1  September 2024
IOS Race photo montage
  • UK's longest annual sailing dinghy, cat & sailboard race!
  • A 40-mile clockwise circumnavigation of Kent's Isle Of Sheppey organised by IOS Sailing Club
  • Established since 1959 as an endurance event
  • Open to all classes of sailing dinghy, catamaran & sailboard
  • Sea, river & estuary sailing with tidal conditions
  • In popular years over 100 competitors have taken part
  • Every competitor successfully completing the course receives a circumnavigation certificate signed by the Commodore
  • SailRacer Live GPS tracking
  • Part of the 2024 Allen Endurance Series

Sponsors & Partners:

  • Allen Brothers logo
  • Sailracer logo
  • Shepherd Neame logo
  • Medway RAYNET Group logo
  • Designbell Web Development logo
  • Medway and Swale Boating Association logo
  • Sheppey Sea Cadets logo
  • Ship on Shore
    Public House
31st August 2024
1st September 2024

For the 'Early Birds':

66th IOS Round the Island Race

Open to Dinghies & Catamarans
First start Not before 12pm
'Round-the-cans' handicap racing off the clubhouse for dinghies & cats.

- 3 races back-to-back from a committee boat
- SI & course issued at registration
Tides HW 11.45 BST (5.08m)
LW 18.14 BST (1.07m)
(open to all)
Evening social event (tbc)
Food Club kitchen (tbc)
Open to Dinghies, catamarans & sailboards
Entry fees (tbc) £50 (pre-entry) / £60 (on the day)
Registration From 8.00 am inside the clubhouse.
Every competitor must register on race day.
Briefing 09.15 inside the clubhouse
Start times Pennant 1 flag icon 10.00 Monohulls
PY >= 1120
Pennant 2 flag icon 10.30 Monohulls PY 1119 to 1030
Pennant 3 flag icon 11.00 Monohulls
Slow Multis
PY < 1030
PY >= 900
Pennant 4 flag icon 11.30 Fast Multis PY < 900
NoR / SI NoR / Sailing Instructions
Time limit 19.30 hrs to be included in the results
Tides HW 12.36 BST (5.33m)
LW 19.05 BST (0.87m)
Food Club kitchen


IOS Round the Island Race is a long established, long distance event designed to test sailing skills and endurance over a 40-mile course. Sailed clockwise around the island, starting and finishing at IOS Sailing Club, the race includes tidal sea, river & estuary sailing.

The event is the longest dinghy and board race in Europe — it should not be confused with so-called 24 hour races, which allow for a change of helm and crew.

The race is open to all classes of dinghy, catamaran and sailboard but any dinghy or catamaran that does not have an RYA Portsmouth Yardstick number should make contact with the IOS Sailing Club before the day of the event.


Island Map The race starts and finishes at Sheerness and is a clockwise circumnavigation of the island. Firstly by sea to Leysdown and around the NE tip of the Island, Shellness, and then into the Swale estuary. The Swale gradually narrows into the river, with the lifting road bridge at Kingsferry acting as an obstacle at its narrowest point. Larger dinghies and multihulls have to be stopped, heeled over and walked under the inner span of the bridge. The course continues up the Swale, through the ancient port of Queenborough and into the mouth of the Medway, before finally rounding Garrison Point to the open sea and the short distance back to the Club.

Course records:

Multihull: 1hr 52mins Stuart Gummer/Ryan Crawford
(Hobie Wild Cat), 2010
Monohull: 2hrs 17mins Neil Ashby/Sam Proctor
(RS800), 2010
Sailboard: 2hrs 34mins Andy Gibson, 2018

Typical passage times are 3 - 10 hours.


Every boat should be capable of completing the course in whatever conditions are encountered. Particular note should be made of the possibility of being reliant upon your own resources for a protracted period, even returning after dark or in fog.

All boats buoyancy arrangements must be in thoroughly efficient working order. Safety boats are instructed that, if necessary, crews are to taken off, and boats left to be towed in later. It is therefore advised that all boats carry an anchor.

Perpetual Trophies and Prizes
Trophies retained by club - competitor receives separate keepsake.
Parker Cup   First overall on PY
Times & Guardian Cup   Second overall on PY
Third Overall Cup   Third overall on PY
Bartling Line Honours Cup   First across the finishing line
Rush & Tomkins Cup   First monohull slow handicap
McGloin Challenge Cup   First monohull medium handicap
Napier Cup   First monohull fast handicap
Thurston Challenge Cup   First multihull on SCHRS
David Clay Windsurfing Challenge Trophy   First sailboard on elapsed time
Shadwell Basin Shield   First female helm (dinghy/cat) on PY
Cannon Tool Hire Shield   First singlehanded dinghy/cat on PY
Youth Shield
  First under 16 helm on PY
Ship on Shore   First IOSSC boat over the line
Abbott Salver   First IOSSC boat on PY

The fastest circumnavigation recorded was set by Stuart Gummer & Ryan Crawford sailing a Hobie Wild Cat in 2010 and took just 1 hour 52 minutes.

The slowest boat ever to complete the course was a Tinker Traveller inflatable dinghy, sailed by David Holden.

1985 saw a record entry of 300 competitors!

British Olympic sailor Hugh Styles took part in the '91 race, crewing a 420 for Simon Cory, finishing 12th overall.

The designer of the Catapult catamaran, Jon Montgomery also took part in the '91 race, finishing 3rd overall.

Malcolm Green was the first person to win the race in three consecutive years