1908 Harmsworth Trophy
Huntington Bay, New York, July 27-28, 1908
International Trials Postponed Until July 27 and 28
Because of the fact that several of the motorboats entered for the trial races planned for the selection of three defenders for the British International Trophy for motorboats were not ready for racing on July 10 and 11, the regatta committee of the Motor Boat Club of America were compelled on July 8 rather hurriedly to issue notices of a postponement of the trials until Monday and Tuesday, July 27 and 28. It is expected that all of the nine candidates for cup honors will be ready for racing on the dates as finally set. This action leaves very little time for the boats chosen to defend the cup to do any tuning-up work, but it is hoped that they will make use of all opportunities for this work previous to the trials.
There has been something of uncertainty as regards the use of mufflers in the cup race. Neither the conditions as set down by the British International Commission, nor the rules pursuant thereto adopted and put in force in 1906, mention anything about mufflers. it was known early in the season, however, that the skipper of Dixie was compelled to install something in the shape of a muffler last year. Inquiry of the secretary of the Motor Yacht Club brought simply a copy of the Marine Motor Association rules with two paragraphs scored, one of which, rule 16 said: "Every vessel racing under the Association's rules is to be fitted with an efficient exhaust silencer." The other read: "With reference to racing rule No. 16, the efficiency of the exhaust silencer is to be left in all cases to the discretion of the race officers." This was none too clear, even though paragraph 2 of the conditions under the deed of gift says: "The trophy shall be competed for in any year and at such time and such place as hereinafter appears, but shall be under the rules for the time being of the Marine Motor Association of the United Kingdom." The uncertainty arises over the construction of the phrase "for the time being," whether that was intended to be the period of time at which the conditions were adopted for the period at which any race might be run. The muffler question has become rather acute during the last ten days, and on July 13 the officers of the Motor Boat Club cabled to the secretary of the British International Commission asking for a direct answer to the question whether mufflers were required or not. On July 16 a cablegram was received from the Motor Yacht Club, the challenging club, which read: "Exhaust must be effectively silenced, not necessarily by muffler."
It is as well that the trial races did not take place until this question was decided, inasmuch as the installation of any silencing mechanism at the last moment would have been rather awkward. All the candidates have been notified of this condition of affairs. It is expected that the trial races will prove to be of as great interest as the trophy race itself. The trophy race will take place on Saturday, August 1, as heretofore announced.
(Transcribed from MotorBoat, July 25, 1908, p. 43)
[Thanks to Greg Calkins for help in preparing this page. LF]
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