A POWERBOAT spectacle is returning to Gosport after a successful first year hosting the event.
The Powerboat P1 Grand Prix of the Sea will be returning this summer with hopes to bring in even bigger crowds.
The decision to hold the event at Stokes Bay was announced yesterday after thousands of people headed to the beach in September to see the finale of the Grand Prix series.
During the two-day event, thousands of people watched 10 P1 Panthers race at up to speeds of 65mph as well as 35 jet-skis. Onshore there were live music, numerous stalls, a barbecue and funfair.
Organisers of the P1 race described Stokes Bay as a ‘natural amphitheatre’.
Cllr Stephen Philpott, chairman of economic development at Gosport Borough Council, welcomed the return of the race.
He said: ‘It’s exciting and free to watch and this weekend of spectacular racing is just part of an amazing programme of marine-based events proposed for the summer.’
The race will be second of three big events in Gosport between June and July.
On June 13, Gosport’s Waterfront Millennium Promenade and Haslar Marina will be the venue for the Gosport Marine Festival. At this event people of all ages will be able to have a go at a range of water activities.
Just four weeks later, crowds will gather at Stokes Bay for the Powerboat P1 race. Also in July, Portsmouth and Gosport will host spectators for the America’s Cup World Series.
Cllr Philpott added: ‘The Gosport Marine Festival and P1 Powerboat racing are the perfect way to whet the appetite for what is to come at the end of July.
‘Gosport and Portsmouth really will be the places to be this summer and no one will want to miss a thing – especially as so much of this world-class entertainment, which is right here on our doorstep, will be completely free.’