Entries to this year's Skandia Cowes Week currently number 865, which bodes well for an eventual four-figure entry

Organisers of the world’s largest, oldest and most prestigious sailing regatta are predicting 2004 as another bumper year for entries.

Entries to this year’s Skandia Cowes Week number 865 (at today’s date) and Stuart Quarrie, Director of Cowes Combined Clubs, reckons that there will be the usual last-minute spurt after Cork Week has finished. Stuart predicts that with 23 days still to go, the final figure could reach 1,000.

“At this stage we’re about 40 boat entries ahead of the same time last year but realistically we’re probably looking at around 950 to 980.” The only year that entries have topped 1,000 was in 2001, the year of the America’s Cup Jubilee.

This year’s class and boat details are now all online at www.cowesweek.co.uk – users simply select ‘Boats’ from the menu. You can either search for specific boats or browse through complete class lists. Clicking on a boat name will give you as much information as is available on that particular entry.

The IRC and ISC class splits are still to be determined so all of these boats are currently grouped together under ‘IRC boats’ and ‘ISC boats’ respectively. This year, the actual breaks have been left until immediately prior to the event to ensure the best racing for each class.