Schneider Trophy Winners
The Coupe d'Aviation Maritime Jacques Schneider (commonly called the Schneider Trophy, Schneider Prize or Schneider Cup) was awarded annually to the winner of a race for seaplanes. The Trophy is now held at RAF College Cranwell. Announced by Jacques Schneider, a financier, balloonist and aircraft enthusiast, in 1911, the competition offered a prize of approximately £1,000. The race was held eleven times between 1913 and 1931. It was intended to encourage technical advances in civil aviation but became a contest for pure speed with laps over a triangular course (initially 280 km, later 350 km). The races were very popular and some attracted crowds of over 200,000 spectators. Since 1977 the trophy has been on display at the Science Museum in London.
In 1981 the race was revived by the Royal Aero Club of Great Britain to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Britain's ultimate retention of the Trophy. The original Trophy remained in the Science Museum, and a full-size replica was cast and the race opened on a handicapped basis to any propeller driven land plane capable of maintaining 100 miles per hour in straight and level flight, and weighing up to 12,500 lbs. Pilots also had to have a minimum of 100 hours as pilot-in-command, and a valid air racing licence.
Following that event, the UK subsidiary of US computer company Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) independently decided to sponsor a long-term revival of the Schneider Trophy, with the first race held in 1984. The idea was submitted by DEC's then UK PR consultancy Infopress as part of a broader commercial sponsorship programme designed to increase DEC's presence in the UK market at that time. DEC sponsored this revived race series from 1984 until 1991, which also marked the diamond jubilee of the final race in the original series. DEC and Infopress turned to the expertise of the Royal Aero Club's Records, Racing & Rally Association which again administered and ran the actual races. The 1981 Solent course, itself a close approximation of the original 1929 and 1931 Schneider Trophy courses over the Solent, was also used and adapted from year to year.
This sponsorship had a profound effect on the awareness and popularity of handicapped air racing in the UK and further afield, as well as markedly increasing DEC's commercial profile in the UK. The appeal of the race, its historic connections, and the fact that prize money was now on offer, meant that the entry list for the race was large enough to warrant the introduction of heats from 1985 onwards. (The 1984 race field was 62 entrants, believed at the time to be the largest-ever in all forms of air racing.)
The event received further boosts in 1986, when it was started by HRH Prince Andrew and his then fiancée Sarah Ferguson; in 1987, when the event was featured as one episode in a BBC television documentary series; and in 1988, when it was a central part of that year's ITV Telethon Appeal.
DEC invited customers and partners to each year's event as guests, and the general public watched in increasing numbers as the series grew in size and popularity.
For the pilots taking part, the event became, along with the King's Cup Air Race, the highlight of the UK's air racing season, and regularly attracted entrants from continental Europe.
After DEC's departure as sponsor after the 1991 race, the race continued. The venue has varied but is still flown on most occasions around a Solent-based course, usually around September of each year.
|Date||Location||Winning aircraft||Nation||Pilot||Average speed|
|1913||Monaco||Deperdussin Coupe Schneider||˙France||Maurice Prévost||73.56˙km/h (45.71˙mph)|
|1914||Monaco||Sopwith Tabloid||˙United Kingdom||Howard Pixton||139.74˙km/h (86.83˙mph)|
|1920||Venice, Italy||Savoia S.12||Italy||Luigi Bologna||172.6˙km/h (107.2˙mph)|
|1921||Venice, Italy||Macchi M.7bis||Italy||Giovanni de Briganti||189.66˙km/h (117.85˙mph)|
|1922||Naples, Italy||Supermarine Sea Lion II||˙United Kingdom||Henry Biard||234.51˙km/h (145.72˙mph)|
|1923||Cowes, United Kingdom||Curtiss CR-3||˙United States||David Rittenhouse||285.29˙km/h (177.27˙mph)|
|1925||Baltimore, United States||Curtiss R3C-2||˙United States||James Doolittle||374.28˙km/h (232.57˙mph)|
|1926||Hampton Roads, United States||Macchi M.39||˙Italy||Mario de Bernardi||396.69˙km/h (246.49˙mph)|
|1927||Venice, Italy||Supermarine S.5||˙United Kingdom||Sidney Webster||453.28˙km/h (281.66˙mph)|
|1929||Calshot Spit, United Kingdom||Supermarine S.6||˙United Kingdom||Richard Waghorn||528.89˙km/h (328.64˙mph)|
|1931||Calshot Spit, United Kingdom||Supermarine S.6B||˙United Kingdom||John Boothman||547.31˙km/h (340.08˙mph)|
|Date||Location||Winning Aircraft||Nation||Pilot||Average speed|
|1981||Bembridge||Piper Archer||˙United Kingdom||Jeremy Smith||239.37˙km/h (148.74˙mph)|
|1984||Beagle Pup||˙United Kingdom||Paul Moorhead||215.65˙km/h (134.00˙mph)|
|1985||Robin Aiglon||˙United Kingdom||Nick Snook||255.72˙km/h (158.90˙mph)|
|1986||Tipsy Nipper||˙United Kingdom||Ron Mitcham||177.83˙km/h (110.50˙mph)|
|1987||Cessna 180||˙United Kingdom||Andrew Brinkley||261.68˙km/h (162.60˙mph)|
|1988||Cessna Skymaster 337F||˙United Kingdom||Peter Crispe||310.68˙km/h (193.05˙mph)|
|1989||Bembridge||Piper PA-22 Tri-Pacer||˙United Kingdom||Safaya Hemming|
|1990||Beechcraft Baron||˙United Kingdom||Spencer Flack|
|1991||Druine Condor||˙United Kingdom||Brian Manning|
|1992||Bolkow 208 Junior||˙United Kingdom||Andrew Watson|
|1993||Scottish Aviation Bulldog||˙United Kingdom||Sq Ldr Mike Baker|
|1994||Piper Cherokee||˙United Kingdom||Ian Finbow|
|1995||Beech Bonanza||˙United Kingdom||John Kelman|
|1996||Grumman Tiger||˙United Kingdom||Alan Austin|
|1998||Cessna 182||˙United Kingdom||Milan Konstantinovic|
|1999||Grumman American AA-1||˙United Kingdom||Bruce Hook|
|2000||Robin DR400||˙United Kingdom||Dudley Pattison|
|2001||Beagle Pup 150||˙United Kingdom||Ivan Seach-Allen|
|2002||Grumman American AA-5||˙United Kingdom||Phil Wadsworth|
|2003||Beech Bonanza||˙United Kingdom||John Spooner|
|2004||Van's Aircraft RV-7||˙United Kingdom||John Kelsall|
|2005||Van's Aircraft RV-6||˙United Kingdom||John Village|
|2006||Socata Rallye||˙United Kingdom||Martin Kellett|
|2007||Piper Warrior||˙United Kingdom||Daniel Pangbourne|
|2009||Bembridge||Scottish Aviation Bulldog||˙United Kingdom||Neil Cooper||124.26˙kn (230.13˙km/h; 143.00˙mph)|
|2012||Alderney||CAP 10B||˙United Kingdom||David Moorman||142.612˙kn (264.117˙km/h; 164.115˙mph)|
|2014||Alderney||Van's RV-7||˙United Kingdom||John Kelsall|
|2015||Alderney||Van's RV-6||United Kingdom||Jonathan Willis||167 kn (309 km/h; 192 mph)|
|2016||Alderney||Lake Amphibian||United Kingdom||Roderick Morton|
|2019||Alderney||Vans RV7||United Kingdom||Ian Harding||172.54 kn (325.10 km/h; 202.01 mph)|