1906 APBA Gold Cup
Unfortunately for the success of the races for the Gold Challenge Cup of the American Power Boat Association, one of the contestants found it necessary to hand in a protest against the rating of another craft, and at the present writing, the winner of the Gold Cup is still unknown. Chip II won the second and third races, while Sparrow won the first and was second in the other two. The protest, as mentioned in the description of the races on another page, is based upon the fact that the engine of Chip II developed considerable more horse power than the figure given in her horse power rating. While Mr. Leighton is deserving of considerable praise in turning out an entirely new type of marine engine, still, if the rule does not rate the engine fairly, the measurer of the Chippewa Bay Y.C. should have given the craft a new rating upon remeasurement. Apparently, he is of the opinion that the additional upon the engine in no way adds to its power. There is a rule mentioned in the statement of the Regatta Committee to the Executive Committee of the Association, which seems to cover the matter in question. It reads as follows:
"If from any peculiarity in the build of a yacht, or other cause, the measurer shall be of the opinion that the rule will not rate the yacht fairly, or that in any respect she does not comply with the requirements of these rules, he shall report the circumstances to the race committee, who, with the measurer, after due inquiry, shall award such certificate of rating as they may consider equitable, and the measurement shall be deemed incomplete until this has been done."
As the measurer and the committee could not come to any conclusion, owing to the fact that the measurer would not re-rate the boat, the matter, as stated before, has been referred to the Executive Committee of the Association. There can be no doubt that the extra cylinder adds to the efficiency of the engine and no doubt to a very great extent. The idea is not entirely new, having been in use upon stationary engines for some years, but the fact remains that the rules distinctly state that all cylinders must be taken into consideration in the measurement of an engine and it is up to the Executive Committee to interpret the rules, and, if it finally comes down to the strictest possible interpretation of the rules, the whole series of races could be legally thrown out.
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As an instance of how this year's rules worked out, admitting that the committee who compiled them are aware of some small improvement which could be made, it is interesting to compare the figures of the different boats. In the first day's racing nine boats actually started, and excepting the times of the first two boats, which possibly will be changed before the controversy is finally settled, the balance of the boats finished the race within six minutes and thirty-six seconds of each other, which, over a course of thirty miles, is very good -- some of the boats finishing within seconds of one another. On the second day, eliminating also the time of the first two boats the rest of the fleet finished within six minutes and five seconds of each other. The statement, commonly believed, that the high powered boat cannot possibly score a win under the present rule, was not borne out by the fact that Dixie, the craft of the highest rating to actually start and finish, lost third place by only nine seconds on the first day and five seconds on the second day. On the third day, conditions were such that comparison would be useless, but passing the comparison upon performance of the boats on the first two days, the rules, with one or two small improvements, are all right.
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The Regatta Committee and measurer at the Gold Cup races were greatly handicapped by the racing boats arriving at the eleventh hour to be measured. An event of this kind is certainly of enough importance to warrant the contestants having their boats ready for measurement some little time before the start, at least twenty-four hours, to allow the necessary calculations. it is quite difficult to rate a craft accurately and fairly, and the results by different measurers do not always agree, as will be seen by a comparison of the ratings given last week and the actual rating under which the boats raced.
(Transcribe from Power Boat News, Sep. 8, 1906, p. 490. )
[Thanks to Greg Calkins for help in preparing this page. LF]
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