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Strong winds and rough sea conditions off the Isle Of Wight forced organisers to withdraw five boat classes before the Round The Island race began.
Organisers reported that three competitors were taken to hospital for treatment, two after suffering head injuries and one with a spinal injury. All were later discharged.
The 81st annual race, which is 50 nautical miles and was due to feature over 1600 boats, was started by Olympic 470 sailor Hannah Mills.
First across the line was former Mini Transar winner Yves Le Blevec on the Multi 50 trimaran 'Actual' in a time of three hours, nine minutes and 57 seconds, just one minute outside the record.
Triple Olympic gold medallist Ben Ainslie skippered the 162 foot Eleanora, the largest boat ever to compete in the race.