1907 Monaco Regatta
Monte Carlo, Monaco, April 1-16, 1907
The Fourth Annual Motor Boat Exhibition and
Races at Monaco
by Our Paris Correspondent
For the fourth time there were held at Monaco, from the 2nd to the 14th of last month, the motor-boat show and races that have come to be the great annual spring event in Europe. The boats exhibited by the different constructors were finer, speedier, and more beautifully finished than ever before, and many records were broken in both the racer and cruiser classes. As an indication of the trend of motor-boat development abroad, it may be said that whereas in 1904 there were entered for the races but 81 motor boats (34 racers, 34 cruisers, 4 steam yachts, 7 small boats, and 2 fishing boats), this year 93 craft were entered, consisting of 22 racers, 54 cruisers, 5 hydroplanes, and 12 vedettes. Thus it will be seen that the fishing boats and the small boats have been replaced by the hydroplanes and the vedettes.
Two races were held on the 8th of April, one for the racers and one for the cruiser class. The distance in each case was 50 kilometers (31.06 miles). These racers were of the first series, consisting of boats up to 8 meters (26.24 feet) in length. French and Italian boats were entered in this series, among them being the "Rapiere II," built by Tellier, of Paris, and fitted with a new Panhard-Levassor motor; Baron de Caters "Sea Sick," the speed champion of last year, which was built by the same firm and fitted with an Itala motor; and the "Itala," both hull and motor of which were of Italian make, as was also the "Fiat XV." "La Mouvette" was another French racer built by Tellier. In all, five boats started. Soon the struggle came between the two favorites, "Rapiere," and "Fiat," and they kept close together during the first round. "La Rapiere" made the finest performance, however, and ran at a high speed taking the turns about the buoys in much better shape than the Italian boat. After the first round, the "Fiat" seemed to have trouble with the motor, and slowed up for a short time. it soon came up to speed, however, but the French boats had already passed far in the lead, while the "Sea Sick" was running second. The "Itala' was obliged to stop, as the water feed pipe was above the water level when the boat ran at high speed. The "Fiat' gained upon the 'Sea Sick' again, as it was making faster speed, and succeeded in overtaking and passing her on the fifth round. It completed the course in less than one hour, taking second place, while the 'Sea Sick' followed closely at a somewhat lower speed. As regards the "Fiat" it was one of the fastest boats in the race, but was more difficult to handle when making the turns. It threw a tremendous spray. The "SeaSick", which was built over a year ago, is a fast as well as a reliable boat, and its Itala motor made a fine performance. But the palm was carried off by the "Rapiere II," the fastest boat of the lot, and which brings much credit to the Tellier firm and the Panhard motor. The result of the 50-kilometer (31.06-mile) race was as follows: "La Rapiere II," first in 55 minutes, 55 1-5 seconds, which corresponds to a speed of 33.32 miles an hour--a new world's record that is truly remarkable for a boat of this size; "Fiat XV," second in 57 minutes, 36 seconds (32.36 m.p.h.); "Sea Sick," third in 1 hour, 1 minute, 50 seconds; "Mouvette," fourth in 1 hour, 50 minutes, 59 4-5 seconds.
On the same day, in the morning, was held the 50-kilometer (31.06-mile) race for small cruisers, and nine of the these succeeded in finishing the distance. There were no less than 21 boats at the start, three belonging to the first series, with a length under 6.50 meters (21.32 feet), and a cylinder capacity not exceeding 2.5 liters (152.55 cubic inches). The best places were taken by "Capoulou III," and "Nautilus-Mutel I," both of which were fitted with Mutel motors. After the start "Capoulou" took the lead, but was hard pressed by "Nautilus-Mutel," and the two cruisers kept well together during the whole race, making a very regular run, and at a good speed, this being about 19 1/2 miles an hour. A good performance was also made by the "Gamine," fitted with a Peugeot motor, and it made nearly the same speed, taking third place. Fourth came the "Champagne," with an Antoinette motor, and these four boats all succeeded in breaking last year's record at Monaco. The "Lanturlu III," fitted with a DeDion motor, was fifth. The times were as follows: 1. Capoulou III," 1 hour, 35 minutes, 55 2-5 seconds (19.43 m.p.h.); 2."Nautilus-Mutel I," 1 hour, 36 minutes, 11 4-5 seconds (19.37 m.p.h.); 3."Gamine," 1 hour, 39 minutes, 28 seconds (18.73 m.p.h.); 4."Champagne," 1 hour, 51 minutes, 56 seconds; 5. "Lanturlu III," 1 hour 58 minutes, 19 seconds; 6."C. B. II," 1 hour, 59 minutes, 47 1-5 seconds.
On the second day of the races there was such a high sea that only the most seaworthy craft could run, and the high speed racers were obliged to wait for more favorable weather. Some of the cruisers were able to withstand the sea and did very well on this occasion showing that the designs are becoming much better in this respect. At the start were the "Louise-Reine," "Mais-je-vais-piquer," "Nautilus B. V. Jacqueline," 'Excelsior Nihil-Lally," and "Dalifol-Petroleum," all in the second class with length below 8 meters (26.24 feet), and a cylinder capacity of not over 3.75 liters (187.54 cubic inches). The "Nautilus B. V. Jacqueline" took the lead from the start, with the Swiss "Mais-je-vais-piquer" coming next; but unfortunately the "Nautilus" struck against a piece of floating wood and was damaged, springing a leak and being obliged to stop. The latter boat thus came in first at the finish with "Dalifol-Petroleum" second. Owing to the bad state of the sea, the race was declared off before the rest of the boats had come in and the "Dalifol" had not as yet reached the finish. This boat was run on kerosene and was not eligible because of excessive cylinder capacity. The time made by the "Mais-je-vais-piquer" was i hour, 38 minutes, 34 3-5 seconds, which corresponds to an average speed of 18.9 miles an hour. The "Nautilus" was doing better than 20 miles an hour when it met with its accident. This boat was fitted with a Boudreaux-Verdet compound-piston motor, which was described some time ago in Supplement No. 1597. The Swiss craft had a Picker motor in a Megevet hull.
The cruiser race for the fourth class, i.e., for boats between 12 and 18 meters (39.37 and 59.05 feet) in length, and a cylinder capacity of not over 15 liters (915.33 cubic inches), brought out the heaviest boats of the lot, and some high speeds were made in this event, notwithstanding the high seas. At the start were the "Lorraine," with two Lorainne-Dietrich motors driving twin screws, and the Italian cruisers "All 'Erta" and "Florentia," the former with a Fiat motor and the second with a Florentia motor. Slower boats were the "Martini IV," and the "Nautilus-Mutel III." The "Lorainne" came rapidly to the front, and made a brilliant run, breaking the world's record for cruisers. After a struggle between the "All 'Erta" and the "Florentia" the former came in ahead, while the other two craft, "Nautilus" and "Martini", abandoned the race. The time made by the "Lorainne" for the 50 kilometers (31.06 miles) was 1 hour, 14 minutes, 21 1-5 seconds, which is a speed of 25.05 miles an hour, that brings it nearly in line with the racers.
Both racers and cruisers had a hard time on the 10th of April, as the sea was very high and made it almost impossible for most of the boats to continue the race. Only two were able to finish, these being the "Panhard" and the "Mercedes." But the "Panhard" made by far the best performance, and what was surprising, succeeded in breaking all the previous records for 50 kilometers (31.06 miles), making even better time than the "Rapiere" in the preceding race. At the start the "Panhard" led off, followed by the "Jeanette," "Daimler I," "Daimler II," "Flying Fish," "New Trefle" and "Mercedes." The "Panhard" soon took the lead and kept it during the whole of the eight rounds of the race. After the fifth round all of the boats but the "Mercedes" had dropped out, as they were unable to withstand the waves and some of them suffered considerable damage. The "Mercedes," which is a slower boat, kept up very regularly, but the "Panhard" was away ahead, and finished the race in 54 minutes, 27 seconds, which is the world's record for the distance, being a speed of 34.21 m.p.h. The "Mercedes's" time was 1 hour, 42 minutes, 56 minutes.
The "Daimler III" and "II" are of English make and have 2 and 3 90-horse-power, 6-cylinder motors respectively, and each driving separate screws. The other English boat, "Flying Fish" has two powerful 80-horse-power 4-cylinder Wolseley-Siddeley motors. These boats were built by Saunders. The last-names hull was known last year as "Yarrow-Napier." Piloted then by Lord Montague, it made 50 kilometers in 4 hours, 47 minutes, as against 5 hours, 14 minutes, this year.
Much attention was attracted by the gliding boats or hydroplanes, and there were three of these different designs to be seen. Count de Lambert's new craft, the "Glisseur", is made up of a series of box-like compartments 3 meters (9.84 feet) long by 1 meter (3.28 feet) wide and spaced about a foot apart. Each compartment has an inclined surface underneath, and the whole appears like a a large raft. The total weight is 1,000 kilogrammes (2,204 pounds). Upon the platform, mounted high up in the air, upon a suitable framework, is an 8-cylinder Antoinette motor capable of developing 50 H.P. at 1,000 R.P.M.. The motor carries a large 3-bladed propeller on its crankshaft, and the push obtained from this working in the air serves to drive the boat. The propeller is 2.1 meters (6.89 feet) in diameter. it drives the boat at a speed of about 25 m.p.h. and raises it from a submergence of 10 inches to one of barely 2 inches. This method of propulsion is by no means new, it having been used some years ago by Count Zeppelin. As to the other gliders, they are both constructed according to Count de lambert's patents. One of these is the "Obus-Nautilus," which is a miniature craft holding two persons. Another, the "Motogodille," carries a light combination motor and propeller outfit that can be detached from the boat, according to the system we have already had occasion to describe. There was a special race for the three hydroplanes. Count de Lambert's craft was disabled from the breaking of a gasoline pipe. It caught fire and had to abandon the race soon after the start. The "Motogodille" also had an accident and dropped out, but the "Nautilus" made a fine run and succeeded in covering the 10 kilometers distance (6.21 miles), bounding over the waves in a remarkable manner. it covered the distance in 18 minutes, 24 seconds, or at a speed of 20 1/4 miles an hour.
The fourth day's race for cruisers of the third class, measuring from 8 to 12 meters (26.24 feet to 39.37 feet) was distinguished by the performance of the Mors-motored "Ulysse" and "Le Sec," and the "Gallinari II," and "Adele," which had Delahaye motors. last year's time for the 31.06 miles was 1 hour, 28 minutes, 25 seconds, but this year the winner, "Ulysse," made the run in 1 hour, 18 minutes, 33 seconds with great regularity at an average speed of 23.72 miles an hour. There were fifteen starters on this occasion.
The long-distance race, known as the "Championship of the Sea," was run off on the 12th of April, with fine weather and a smooth sea favoring the event, and it was one of the most interesting of the series. The distance was 200 kilometers (124.27 miles). At the start the "Rapiere" led off, followed by "Panhard", "Flying Fish," "Fiat XV," "Lorraine," "All 'Erta," "Le Sec," "Ulysse," "Adele," "Florentia," "Mais-je-vais-piquer," "Mercedes II," "Excelsior" and "C. B. I." Both racers and cruisers entered this event this time. The "Panhard" took the lead from the start, and succeeded in keeping it to the finish. At first the "Rapiere" and "Fiat" came next, and the boats kept in this order during the first three rounds. In the fourth round the "Rapiere" fell out owing to a mishap to the magneto allowing the "Fiat" to come second. This order lasted until the seventeenth round, when the "Fiat" was obliged to abandoned the race. There was an exciting struggle between the "Ulysse" and the "Sec," but the "Sec" was disabled during the fifteenth round. As to the "Lorraine," it had to abandon the race owing to a hot bearing and was then passed by the Italian boat "All 'Erta." During the race the "Adele" kept gaining upon the "Mercedes," and finally took fifth place, while the "Mercedes" fell back to sixth. The result of the race was as follows: Winner, "Panhard," which made the distance in 3 hours, 33 minutes, 4 seconds, at an average speed of 34.99 miles an hour; 2. "All 'Erta" time 4 hours, 46 minutes, 27 seconds; 3. "Ulysse," time 4 hours, 59 minutes, 49 seconds; 4. "Flying Fish," time 5 hours, 14 minutes, 13 seconds; 5. "Adele," time 5 hours, 16 minutes, 3 seconds; 6. "Mercedes," time 7 hours, 55 minutes. As will be noted, the performance of the "Panhard" is a remarkable one, seeing that it kept up a speed of over 30 knots during three hours, this being the highest speed ever made by any motor boat and by any craft whatever except some of the swiftest torpedo boats with powerful steam turbines. The regularity of running of the "Panhard" was also noticed during the race, and on the whole it made a most brilliant performance.
(Transcribed from the Scientific American Supplement, May 11, 1907, p. 26206.)
[Thanks to Greg Calkins for help in preparing this page. --LF]
History Home Page
This page was last revised Thursday, April 01, 2010 .
Your comments and suggestions are appreciated. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
© Leslie Field, 2000