Schneider Trophy to celebrate centenary

The Schneider Trophy Air Race will be celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, with a competition taking place on the island of Alderney.

The event – which takes place over the weekend of 27 September - will consist of a practice on Saturday morning followed by the Aurigny Air Services Trophy race on Saturday afternoon. The Schneider will be run on Sunday. The race will be six laps of a course, which circumnavigates the island and extends out to the Casquettes Lighthouse some seven miles out to the west of Alderney, before returning to land. The organisers say that the course will be particularly good for spectators as most of it can be seen from the island.

The Schneider Trophy was inaugurated in 1911 by French financier Jacques Schneider to stimulate the development of sea planes. He offered a prize of £10,000 and the first race went ahead on 16 April 1913. The rules included a clause which said that the first country to won the trophy three years in a row would keep it in perpetuity. Great Britain completed the hat-trick in 1931 and the trophy now resides in the Science Museum.

To race, all you need is a piston engine aircraft capable of 100mph or more and to have more than 100 hours P1. You will also have to undertake a flight test with one of 3R’s check pilots. Past winners include the likes of Dick Waghorn, John Boothman and Jimmy Doolittle.

Due to the constraints of the runway and limited accommodation on the island it has been decided to restrict this year’s entry to thirty aircraft. To enter contact Judy Hanson, aviation secretary, on avsec@britishairracing.com or visit www.britishairracing.com.