1851 : THE £100 cup

On August 22, 1851, the schooner America won the 100 "Guineas" Cup that will become
the oldest and most famous trophy in the sport''s history: the America''s Cup.

America’s Cup Yacht Race With Map by Carol & Mike WernerAccording to an article by the Royal Yacht Squadron :

The cup's name comes from the yacht America which, in 1851, won the Royal Yacht Squadron's race round the Isle of Wight for a Cup of One Hundred Sovereigns (not guineas – the cup is often referred to mistakenly as the Hundred Guinea Cup, by which name it became known in America where it was subsequently engraved).


The new rules :

The RYS Minutes of 9 May 1851 record the decision to hold a race on Friday 22nd August, during the club's Regatta, which would be open to yachts of clubs of all nations. This first such race was arranged so that America could take part if she came to England. Squadron races were normally open only to their own yachts.


As often as the story of the cup is told, is related the good old tale of the famous dialogue of the queen with her signal-master, who, peering from the deck of the Victoria and Albert down The Solent, was asked by Her Majesty: "
- Say, signal-master, are the yachts in sight?
- Yes, may it please Your Majesty.
- Which is first?...


The start

The start does not seem to have inspired many painters, perhaps because the schooner America was not shown to advantage, so here is a picture of the the castle of and the Cowes start line traditional of all the races of the Royal yacht Squadron.


The debate is open

Many paintings exist representative the £100 Cup. Some depict a specific time of the race that can be situed approximately in time and space through the respective positions of ships, their appearance, the landscape and sometimes indications of their author. Some times shown below are questionable. The debate is open.


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