PRESTIGIOUS four-day sailing event the 2022 Brewin Dolphin RS Elite International Grand Prix — hosted by the Royal Yacht Squadron in Cowes — is back on the Isle of Wight after a ten-year gap. 

This year's event — delayed by two years because of the Covid-19 pandemic — is expected to attract the biggest-ever fleet of RS Elites, more than 55 on the start line when it gets underway tomorrow (Thursday).

Strong competition is expected on The Solent between some of the big players in the Elite sailing class, Tom Hewitson (Shaken not Stirred) and Ossie Stewart (More T Vicar), who took the top two places respectively in the recent Southern Championship at Hayling Island.

The world class regatta will feature top quality Elite class racing every day through to Sunday.

The last time the RS Elite Nationals was hosted at Cowes was in 2012, which attracted 38 entries and plenty of spectators.

The Isle of Wight Lord Lieutenant Susie Sheldon will be the guest of honour at a function being held at the Royal Yacht Squadron this evening (Wednesday), where she will give a welcome address to all the race teams.

The nominated charity for the regatta this year is the Andrew Cassell Foundation — an organisation which enables individuals with physical disabilities and impairments to race competitively in sailing on an equal level playing field, with and against able-bodied sailors, in an inclusive and equal environment in all classes.

The charity will have a presence throughout the regatta, with visitors encouraged to donate generously to the cause.