1904 Columbia Yacht Club Regatta
Hudson River, New York City, June 11, 1904


Vanderbilt's Boat Loses
Record Time by Standard for American Auto Races
Nineteen Knots an Hour

Fiat I
Also a Notable Winner in Columbia Yacht Club Events
Good Sport in Five Classes

External Links found on other websites:

The Library of Congress American Memory site features film (!) of this race (about 2 minutes long):

RealMedia format ... for 28.8 or higher modem
MPEG format ... 22 megabytes
Quick Time format ... 9 megabytes

W.K. Vanderbilt Jr.'s Hard Boiled Egg showed yesterday that she was in a very beatable condition when the expected palm of victory was snatched from the new racer by the auto boats Standard, Fiat I, and Shooting Star. All of these boats made much faster time over the Columbia Yacht Club course on the Hudson River than did Vanderbilt's auto craft, despite the fact that the young and enthusiastic owner sailed, or rather ran, the boat himself.

The auto boat races of the Columbia Yacht Club, foot of West Eighty-sixth Street, held under the rules of the American Power Boat Association, attracted a splendid flotilla of these new and speedy launches to the starting line, while a dozen or more steam yachts, all gaily dressed for the occasion and anchored in the immediate vicinity of the clubhouse, added an element of picturesqueness to the animated scene. The clubhouse was well-filled with yachtsmen and guests, a particularly large number of auto boat enthusiasts being among the spectators.

While Vanderbilt's boat failed to do the wonders that have been heralded as possibilities, with more or less reason, the results, so far as showing the speed facilities of the auto boats now in use in American waters, were very successful. The Standard, raced by her owner, E.A. Riotte, not only won in her class, but made the best time credited to an auto boat in any race held in this country. She covered the course of thirty-two nautical miles in 1:41:27, actual time, which is running at a rate of about 19.1 knots an hour.

In the Decoration Day races at the Manhasset Yacht Club the Japansky led the fleet making about 18 knots an hour. The Japansky was not in as good working order yesterday, and only made about 15 knots an hour. The Standard, Japansky, and Alert were the only boats starting in their class, but the Alert did not finish, her clutch failing to work well after the first turn, and the boat withdrew.

Vanderbilt's boat, the Hard Boiled Egg, was in the class with Fiat I, sailed by C.H. Tangeman; the Shooting Star, sailed by H.A. Lozier Jr., and the Water Lily, sailed by Frank Seaman. The latter, however, started with the Standard., and therefore had to be disqualified. Vanderbilt managed the motor of his boat and he had two helpers. His fast turbine yacht, the Tarantula, was anchored off the clubhouse, and attracted considerable attention. Mrs. Vanderbilt was aboard with a party of friends and they watched, through glasses, the progress of the Hard Boiled Egg as she quickly sped out of sight up the Hudson, running far over toward the Fort Lee shore, and then darting down the river.

Tangeman, sailing his Fiat I, manoeuvered the start in the prettiest possible manner. Seldom does a yachtsman in any race get so perfect a start. He seemed to have calculated to a nicety the time between the preparatory and the starting guns, and three seconds after the last gun he sped across the line amid the cheers from the clubhouse. Vanderbilt went over the line a few seconds later, followed by the Shooting Star, which proved to be the third fastest boat in the race.

The course staked out for these auto boats was four times over an eight-knot course as follows:

From the starting to and around a mark showing one ball anchored off the west shore of the river, at a point opposite One Hundred and Fifty-fifth Street and Fort Lee: thence to and around a mark showing one ball, anchored off the west shore of the river at a point opposite Sixty-sixth Street, and from there back to and over the starting line, leaving all marks on the port hand. Distance, 8 nautical miles.

The smaller boats went twice and three times, according to the decisions, over a course of six nautical miles, the only difference being that they turned the upper buoy at One Hundred and Twenty-ninth Street. Owing to lack of proper management in having no official at the upper buoys, all of the big boats started to turn the lower buoy. The Standard made the turn when Mr. Riotte, who, alone of the leaders appeared to remember the rules correctly, discovered his error and immediately turned his boat up stream, thus losing several seconds and making two extra turns. Consequently, when the Fiat, Hard Boiled Egg, and Shooting Star came back to the clubhouse for the first turn, the marvelous lead of the Fiat caused considerable wonder, until the facts were known. As it was, these three boats were all in a class by themselves, and in footing up the results the committee decided to make no disqualifications, but to allow the prizes for the course of twenty-four knots which they actually covered. The Japansky went over the correct course and was the last to finish, coming in after 5 o'clock.

CLASSES C & D Course 16 knots Start 2:35 P.M. 
Boat            Owner              Finish Time     Cor'd Time 
Queen Bess      R.H. Stearns       4:34:35 1:59:35 1:42:10 
Regina          A.L. Clayton       4:37:30 2:02:30 1:47:02 
Aleres II       R.C. Fisher        4:31:39 1:56:39 1:56:39 
Getty           Morris Vail        5:15:48 2:40:48 1:54:11 
Senta           F.G. Mead          4:46:07 2:11:07 1:57:41 
CLASSES H, I & J Course 16 knots Start 2:40 P.M. 
Ardis           R.M. Haddock       4:14:34 1:34:34 1:34:34 
Kaa             J.J. Amory         Did not finish 
San Toy II      W.H. Barrow        4:14:04 1:34:04 1:33:01 
CLASSES K & L Course, 12 knots Start 2:45 P.M. 
Nada            C.A. Godshalk      4:09:27 1:24:27 1:24:27 
Korie                              Did not finish 
CLASSES Q & R Course, 23 knots Start 2:50 P.M. 
Standard        E.A. Riotte        4:31:27 1:41:27 1:41:27 
Japansky        J.H. Waldorf       5:11:33 2:21:33 2:00:19 
Alert           G.W.C. Drexel      Did not finish 
CLASSES S, T & U Course 24 knots Start 2:55 P.M. 
Fiat I          C.H. Tangeman      4:26:07 1:31:07 1:23:04 
Hard Boiled Egg W.K. Vanderbilt Jr 4:32:21 1:37:21 1:37:21 
Shooting Star   H.A. Lozier Jr     4:27:01 1:32:08 1:30:55 
Water Lily      Frank Seaman       Started in wrong class 

(Transcribed from the New York Times, June 12, 1904)


The Second Motor-Boat Race

The second of the American Power Boat Association races took place on the Hudson River Saturday, June 11. As a social event the affair was very successful; as a demonstration of the efficiency and speed of the automobile boat, not quite so much can be said. There were sixteen starters, and of these at least four were disabled during the races.

W.K. Vanderbilt's Hard Boiled Egg, which did not compete in the previous race, appeared on this day and was steered throughout the races by her owner. The craft is fitted with the Mors engine of 60 horse-power which Mr. Vanderbilt hd transferred from one of his automobiles. The boat is 35 feet on the water line, and 40 feet over all, builder, Robert Jacob, acted as Mr. Vanderbilt's assistant. The Hard Boiled Egg competed in the class for automobile boats over a 24-knot course. She finished third, The F.I.A.T. No.1 and the Shooting Star finishing ahead of her. The former made a good showing, though not developing the speed that had been looked for. The F.I.A.T. No.1 is 35 feet over all, and 30 feet on the water line. She derives her power from a F.I.A.T. engine of 35.17 horse-power. Her owner, C.H. Tangeman, steered her throughout the race. The Shooting Star, a new-comer, which finished second, is owned by H.A. Lozier Jr., and has a Lozier engine of 27.14 horse-power.

Another boat that made her maiden appearance on this day was the Alert, owned by George W. Childs Drexel, of Philadelphia. She was driven by a Speedway six-cylinder engine, and was matched against the Japansky and The Standard over a course of 32 nautical miles. The Alert slipped a clutch, however, on the first round and was thereby incapacitated temporarily. The Japansky, with a racing length of 70.35 feet, owned by J.H. Waldorf and fitted with a Speedway engine of 40.99 horse-power, was easily defeated by the Standard with a racing length of 86.05 feet, owned by C.C. Riotti, which has a 110 horse-power engine. The Standard made an excellent showing and covered the course in 1:41:27. Frank Seaman's Water Lily, equipped with a Speedway engine of about 40 horse-power, and 47 feet 5 inches over all, went over the course in the wrong class and therefore made no record. She also had temporary trouble with her engine.

In the cabin class the Queen Bess, owned by R.N. Stevens, fitted with a Standard engine, finished ahead of all the others; the Regina, owned by D.L. Clayton and having a Speedway engine, coming in second. The other boats in this class were the Senta, owned by F.G. Mead, with a Howard engine; the Aletes II, owned by R.C. Fisher, with a Standard engine, and the Getty, owned by Morris Vail, with a Howard engine.

The Nada, owner C.A. Godschalk, with her 3 1/2 horse Giant engine, made excellent time over the 12-mile course, finishing in 1:24:17, her only competitor being the Kotic, owned by C.A. Paine. In the 16-mile event the San Toy, owned by W.H. Barrows, was the winner, with the Ardis, R.M. Haddock owner, second. The Kaa, J.J. Amory's boat, was also in this class, but did not finish.

(Transcribed from Scientific American, June 25, 1904, p. 497. )

(If there are spelling inconsistencies from article to article, that is the way the names appeared in the original reporting - GWC)

[Thanks to Greg Calkins for help in preparing this page]


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