Mike Slade’s ICAP Leopard yacht yesterday smashed the Rolex Fastnet Race monohull record

Sailing in brutal seas and winds of up to 40 knots, which forced 186 yachts to retire from the race, ICAP Leopard completed the 608 mile course in just one day, 20 hours, 18 minutes and 53 seconds.

The Farr-designed 100 ft super maxi yacht owned by the Helical Bar boss beat the previous record by a massive eight hours and 50 minutes.

The Rolex Fastnet Race started off Cowes on the Isle of Wight on 13 August following a 25-hour delay because of adverse weather conditions.

‘What a race,’ said Slade. ‘We’re absolutely delighted to have shattered the Rolex Fastnet Race record.

'To finish almost nine hours faster than Ross Field’s 1999 record is fantastic. The crew of ICAP Leopard did a fantastic job of sailing this beast very fast but safely.

'ICAP Leopard handled really well in the strong winds and sailed beautifully.’

To spice things up in this year’s race, Slade and his Kiwi adversary Neville Crichton, owner of Alfa Romeo, placed a bet on who would win.

The loser, Alfa Romeo, which retired on Monday evening, will be donating £5,000 to the Ellen MacArthur Trust, which gives children suffering from serious illnesses the opportunity to go sailing.