WATCHING powerboats tearing across Southampton Water, it is little wonder this event is called the Grand Prix of the Sea.

The race was the penultimate round of the P1 SuperStock Championship and one of the top attractions at the PSP Southampton Boat Show yesterday.

There were four races throughout the day as boats of different classes battled to be first to pass the chequered flag.

But the spectacular high-speed action was only one of the highlights.

The arrival of the appropriately named HMS Dauntless, the most advanced air defence destroyer in the world, was another huge pull for visitors to the show.

Shipping enthusiasts were able to see the Royal Navy’s latest type 45 destroyer, which was only commissioned in June this year, close up.

These two events showed how the PSP Southampton Boat Show celebrates the best achievements of the marine world from both ends of the spectrum.

Numbers are up on last year with more than 37,000 having already passed through the gates at Mayflower Park for this celebration of all things nautical.

Last year the ten-day event attracted 130,000 visitors but organisers say the 42nd annual show could break all records.

PSP Southampton Boat Show managing director Andrew Williams said: “It is going really well and we are extremely excited about the rest of the week.

“I think the weather and HMS Dauntless have helped. We are getting visited by boat enthusiasts and people who want to know more.”