1948 President's Cup
Potomac River, Washington D.C., September 25-26, 1948
Such Crust Wins President's Cup
The President's Cup Regatta held on the Potomac at Washington, D. C. has always been one of the top regattas of the year. This year's racing was no exception. Of the 1948 major regattas probably more boats raced at Washington with keener competition than at any of the others. The casualties from rough water and other break-downs were also fewer.
The principal event, that for the President's Cup, raced for in three 15 mile heats was won by Such Crust, owned by Jack Schafer of Detroit and driven by Dan Arena. This is the boat which won the first qualifying heat in the Gold Cup race at Detroit but sustained such structural damage that she did not start in the subsequent heats.
But at Washington, Such Crust was an improved boat. In the first heat after trailing My Sweetie for 3 laps, Such Crust took the lead, not to be headed to the finish line. The sixth and final 2½ mile lap in this heat was run at a speed of 73.831 miles per hour with a. speed of 70.203 miles per hour for the 15 miles.
In the second heat, Lahala, another Apel boat, owned and driven by Harry Lynn of New Jersey, stole the show. This boat too raced at both Red Bank and Detroit but at both places was obliged to withdraw on account of breakdowns. .
In this second heat, Lahala was first over the line at the start and was never headed and seemed to be going faster and smoother the longer she ran. She covered the 15 miles at a speed of 73.971 miles per hour, a new record for the Potomac course. Seven boats started in this heat.
When the third heat was called with Such Crust and Lahala tied for first place on points, Lahala startled the crowds by again taking the lead and holding it for four laps with Such Crust slightly astern in second place. Then something went wrong with Lahala's carbureter, her speed fell off and Such Crust soon took the lead finishing with a speed of 77.856 mph. for the 15 miles, another new heat record.
My Sweetie, which led the field for the first few laps in the first heat again demonstrated that she is going to be the boat to beat when all the kinks are worked out of her hull and power plant. But the kinks were still present at Washington and except for the short burst of speed in the first heat, this boat did nothing worthy of mention as she did not come out for the second or third heats. Miss Canada III, also was a disappointment again as has happened so often in the past when competition gets stiff. This boat won the Silver Cup at Detroit at a fast speed but there was no competition to worry her. Miss Canada was third in the final point score.
Another new or rather rebuilt and repowered boat. Mel Crook's Betty V, appeared at Washington for her first race. This boat is credited with well over 100 mph in her try-outs, but her driver seemed satisfied to stay in about the middle of the field and give his boat a work-out in her initial race.
Miss Frostie, the former Notre Dame, capsized in the first heat. Sister Syn, Horace E. Dodge's Allison powered runabout finished sixth in the first heat but failed to finish after that. Miss Pepsi started in the first heat but failed to finish.
In addition to the events for the Presidents Cup, there was a full program of races for outboards as well as for inboard hydroplanes and runabouts with a good entry list in all events.
First Heat, Fifteen Miles
1, Such Crust, Dan Arena, Detroit; 2, Lahala, Harry Lynn, Lake Hopatcong, N. J.; 3, My Sweetie, Bill Cantrell, Louisville, Ky.; 4, Miss Canada III, Harold A. Wilson, Ingersoll, Ont.; 5, Betty V, W. Melvin Crook, Montclair, N. J.; 6, Sister Syn, owned by Horace Dodge; 7, Tomadge IV, Tom Keane, Washington, D. C. Miss Frostie, Warren E. Avis, Detroit, capsized: Miss Pepsi, Clell Perry. Detroit, and Fleur Du Lac, Max.Collins, Tahoe Pines, Calif., did not finish. Time: 12.49. Speed: 70.203 M.P.H.
Second Heat, Fifteen Miles
1, Lahala, Harry Lynn, Lake Hopatcong, N. J.; 2, Such Crust, Dan Arena, Detroit; 3. Miss Canada III, Harold A. Wilson, Ingersoll, Ont.; 4, Betty V., W. Melvin Crook, Montclair, N. J.; 5, Tomadge IV, Tom Keane, Washington, D. C. Fleur De Lac, Max Collins and Sister Syn, Jack O'Mara. did not finish: Skipalong, R. Stanley Dollar, Jr., was on the course but did not start. Time: 12.10. Speed: 73.971 (new President's Cup heat record).
Final Heat, Fifteen Miles
1, Such Crust; 2. Lahala; 3, Miss Canada III: 4, Betty V; 5, Tomadge IV. Time: 11.33 3-5. Speed: 77.856 M.P.H. (new heat record). Point Scores: Such Crust, 1,900; Lahala, 1,000; Miss Canada III, 619.
(Reprinted from Motor Boating, November 1948, pp.112-113)
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