The Harmsworth Cup, popularly known as the Harmsworth Trophy, is an historically important British International Trophy for Motorboats.
The Harmsworth was the first annual international award for motorboat racing. Officially, it is a contest not between boats or individuals but between nations. The boats were originally to be designed and built entirely by residents of the country represented, using materials and units built wholly within that country. The rules were somewhat relaxed in 1949 and may have been relaxed further since.
It was founded by Alfred Charles William Harmsworth in 1903.
In the beginning, it was a very primitive affair, with many boats failing even to start. England won the trophy in 1903 with Dorothy Levitt driving a Napier powered, steel hulled, boat at 19.53 mph at Queenstown (now Cobh) in Cork harbour, Ireland. It was owned and entered by Selwyn Edge the owner of Napier Motors. France won in 1904. In 1907, it was won by Americans for the first time. The US and England traded it back and forth until 1920. From 1920-1933, Americans had an unbroken winning streak. Gar Wood won this race eight times as a driver and nine times as an owner between 1920 and 1933.
Time Magazine said of the 1920 race: "Many a race between shadowy contraband-carrying rumrunners and swift, searchlight playing patrol boats has been run on the narrow Detroit river. Last week 400,000 persons lined the river's edge to watch millionaires race millionaires."
The Harmsworth was reinstated in 1949 and remained in American hands until 1959. In 1959, Canadians won the award. The driver, Bob Hayward, won the Harmsworth again in 1960 and 1961. He died in another race in 1961. The Harmsworth was not run again until 1977, and continued to be run until 1986.
The trophy has been awarded sporadically from 1986 through to 2018, with a total of eleven earned in that time.
|Year||Venue||Boat||Owner||Country||Driver(s)||Ave. Speed (mph)|
|1903||Queenstown (now Cobh), Ireland||Napier I||Selwyn Edge||UK||E. Campbell Muir/Dorothy Levitt||19.53|
|1904||Solent, UK||Trefle-à-Quatre||Emile Thubron||France||Charles-Henri ("Hemri") Brasier||26.63|
|1905||Arcachon, France||Napier II||Selwyn Edge||UK||Lord Montagu||26.03|
|1906||Solent, UK||Yarrow-Napier||Lord Montagu||UK||Lord Montagu||15.48|
|1907||Solent, UK||Dixie I||Edward J. Schroeder||USA||Barkley Pearce||31.78|
|1908||Huntington Bay, United States||Dixie II||Edward J. Schroeder||United States||Barkley Pearce||31.35|
|1910||Huntington Bay, USA||Dixie III||Frederick K. Burnham||USA||Frederick K. Burnham||36.04|
|1911||Huntington Bay, USA||Dixie IV||Frederick K. Burnham||USA||Frederick K. Burnham||40.28|
|1912||Huntington Bay, USA||Maple Leaf IV||Sir E. Mackay Edgar||UK||Thomas Sopwith Sr||43.18|
|1913||Osborne Bay, UK||Maple Leaf IV||Sir E. Mackay Edgar||UK||Thomas Sopwith Sr||57.45|
|1920||Osborne Bay, UK||Miss America I||Garfield Wood||USA||Garfield Wood||61.51|
|1921||Detroit, USA||Miss America II||Garfield Wood||USA||Garfield Wood||59.75|
|1926||Detroit, USA||Miss America V||Garfield Wood||USA||Garfield Wood||61.12|
|1928||Detroit, USA||Miss America VII||Garfield Wood||USA||Garfield Wood||59.33|
|1929||Detroit, USA||Miss America VIII||Garfield Wood||USA||Garfield Wood||75.29|
|1930||Detroit, USA||Miss America IX||Garfield Wood||USA||Garfield Wood||77.23|
|1931||Detroit, USA||Miss America VIII||Garfield Wood||USA||George Wood||85.86|
|1932||Detroit, USA||Miss America X||Garfield Wood||USA||Garfield Wood||78.49|
|1933||Detroit, USA||Miss America X||Garfield Wood||USA||Garfield Wood||86.94|
|1949||Detroit, USA||Skip-a-long||USA||Stan Dollar||94.1|
|1950||Detroit, USA||Slo-Mo-Shun IV||USA||Lou Fageol||100.6|
|1956||Detroit, USA||Shanty I||USA||Russ Schleeh||90.2|
|1959||Detroit, USA||Miss Supertest III||J. Gordon Thompson||Canada||Bob Hayward||104.0|
|1960||Picton, Canada||Miss Supertest III||J. Gordon Thompson||Canada||Bob Hayward||116.3|
|1961||Picton, Canada||Miss Supertest III||J. Gordon Thompson||Canada||Bob Hayward||100.2|
|1977||Limit Up||UK||Michael Doxford|
|1979||Uno Mint||UK||Derek Pobjoy|
|1980||Long Shot||USA||Bill Elswick|
|1983||Fayva Shoes||USA||George Morales|
|1984||UK/Bahamas||UK||Hill, Jones & Wilson|
|1985||UK/Bahamas||UK||Hill, Jones, Wilson & Williams|
|1986||St. Louis, USA/UK||USA||Seebold/ Seebold, Thornton|
|1989||Atlantic City, USA||Gancia Dei Gancia||Monaco||Stefano Casiraghi|
|1993||Cowes, UK||La Nueva||Argentina||Daniel Scioli||91.6|
|1994||Cowes, UK||BP Marine||Norway||Andreas Ugland||51.3|
|1995||Cowes, UK||Admiral Casino Tivoli||Austria||Hannes Bohinc||86.56|
|2002||Cowes, UK||Super Classic 40||Italy||Buonomo/De Simone||52.40|
|2004||Cowes, UK||Grand Argentina Sony||Italy||Fabio Buzzi/Lord Beaverbrook||75.93|
|2010||Cowes, UK||Red FPT||Italy||Fabio Buzzi||59.58|
|2011||Cowes, UK||Cinzano||Germany||Markus Hendricks||65.26|
|2018||Cowes, UK||Team Silverline||Drew Langdon||UK||Drew Langdon/Miles Jennings||54.26|
- The iconic Harmsworth Trophy will be awarded in 2018
- 2018 Rules
- The British International Harmsworth Trophy-TRIUMPHS
- The Trustees, British International Harmsworth Trophy
- The Speed Boat Kings at Channel4.com
- The Harmsworth Trophy to be competed for in 2011
- "Racing Boat Like Flying Fish Triumphs For England" Popular Mechanics, November 1930 photo and story of Miss Britain I