1908 BMBC Burnham Regatta

British Motor-Boat Club (Pt. 1)

The final fixture of the motor-boat racing season, the Burnham Regatta of the British Motor-Boat Club, opened yesterday, and was favoured with splendid weather. Five races were on the programme, and a record entry of 67 boats had been received; but a number did not start, some being weather-bound in the Thames, while others owing to mishaps were unable to get their engines running in time. Two races for challenge cups were run in the morning, while the afternoon programme was made up of one challenge cup race, a match for cabin cruisers, and a handicap for boats not exceeding 40ft. In the race for the Morning Illustrated Challenger Cup, held by Mr. Oswald B. Colls's Fleurette, neither Lord Howard de Walden's Daimler boats nor Mr. Mawdsley Brooke's Brooke II were ready to start, and the cup was ultimately won by Mr. Warwick Wright's Sea Dog, which defeated Gyrinus by less than two minutes on M.M.A. allowance. Details:--

First race, for motor boats not exceeding 40ft. over all, under M.M.A. rating and time scale. Course, starting from an imaginary line drawn between two mark beacons on the Mussel bank (north shore) below the Eastern Yacht Club at Burnham, thence down the Crouch to a mark boat moored off the north shore below the mouth of the Reach, and back to the starting line. Four times round, rounding the lower mark boat and the one on the line to starboard, 16 sea miles. First prize, Motoring Illustrated Challenge Cup and miniature; second prize £5; third prize £2.

Defender was scratch, and allowed Sleuthhound 21m. 4sec., Camilla 22min. 4sec., Gyrinus 29min. 21sec., Fleurette II 25min. 16sec., Ravissante 33min., Arab 31min. 1sec., Norvic 36min. 27sec., Sea Dog 40min. 36sec., Fleurette 51min. 16sec., Takumono 53min. 5sec., Davis 59min. 2sec., Blake Q 63min. 10sec., Dion Bouton 92min. 29sec, Gipsy Girl 96min. 6sec. The start took place ay 10:30. Daimler II, Dylan, Brooke II, Irish Adamate, Spitfire, and Hole I did not start.

Sea Dog led across the line closely followed by Defender, the two Fleurettes, Takumono, and Gyrinus. De Dion Bouton stopped on the line, her sparking plug having broken. Norvic also stopped, but went on, as did Dollydo. A number of mishaps happened during the race, which resulted in a victory for Sea Dog by 1min. 24sec from Gyrinus, which beat Fleurette for second place by a few seconds. Entries and official times of the boats which finished were:--

Boat Owner Hp. H. M. S.  
Takumono Mr. W. Miall Green 15 dnf    
Ravissante Mr. L. M. Waterhouse 24 11 49 28
Defender Mr. F. May 54 11 19 36
Fleurette Mr. Oswald B. Colls 16 11 46 1  (third)
Fleurette II Mr. Oswald B. Colls 35 11 37 42
Daimler II Lord Howard de Walden 250 dns    
Dylan Lord Howard de Walden 60 dns    
Brooke II Mr. Mawdsley Brooke 100 dns    
Arab Mr. G. F. Bestic 35 11 33 49
Irish Adamate Mr. W. Scott Hayward 45 dns    
Sea Dog Mr. Warwick Wright 30 11 33 35 (winner)
Sleuthhound Mr. E. P. Maxstead Robinson 27 dnf    
Blake Q Mr. G. F. C. Blake 6 12 3 10
Camilla Mr. R. M. Fairbanks 20 dnf    
Dion Bouton Mr. J. W. Stocks 6 dnf    
Gyrinus Mr. Bernard Redwood 30 11 23 44 (second)
Spitfire Mr. W. Schmahl 24 dns    
Gipsy Girl Mr. W. S. H. Smith 6 1 36 19
Norvic Mr. J. J. Dawson Paul 25 dnf    
Dollydo Mr. J. J. Dawson Paul junr. 20 12 17 46
Davis Mr. F. R. Davis 12 12 49 37
Hole I Mr. H. A. Hole 30 dns    


Second Race, for motor-boats exceeding 25ft. and not exceeding 35ft., over all, under M.M.A. rating and time scale. Course, the same as in the first race. First prize, the A. J. Wilson Challenge Cup and miniature; second prize, £5; third prize, £2. Start 10:30 a.m.

Gyrinus was scratch, and allowed Ravissante 3min. 39sec., Norvic 7min. 6sec., Sea Dog 11min. 15 sec., and Dollydo 14min. 42sec. The finish was timed:--

Gyrinus (second) 11 23 44 Ravissante 11 49 18
Sea Dog (winner) 11 33 35 Dollydo 12 7 46

Third Race, for motor boats not exceeding 25ft. over all, under M.M.A. rating and time scale. Course, the same as the first race, but only twice around, eight sea miles. First prize, the A. J. Wilson challenge cup and miniature; second prize, £5; third prize, £2.

Brooke II was scratch and allowed Sleuthhound 5min. 54sec., Irish Adamate 6min. 56sec., Fleurette II 8min., Arab 9min. 41sec., Hole I 9min. 57sec., Spitfire 11min. 40sec., Fleurette 21min., Takumono 21min. 55sec., Davis 24min. 53sec., Blake Q 26min. 57sec., Cheripika (Mr. W. H. McLean, 10 H.P.) 30min. 55sec., Dion Bouton 41min. 37sec., Gipsy Girl 43min. 25sec., Dorothy (Mr. F. May, 3 H.P.) 55min. Start 1:30 p.m. This race worked out very closely, so far as the second third, and fourth boats were concerned, 6sec. covering the three. On corrected times the finish was:--

Brooke I 1 53 48 Blake Q (second) 2 17 57
Fleurette II 1 59 8 Davis 2 44 25
Arab (third) 2 00 46 Dion Bouton 2 47 59
Fleurette (winner) 2 8 54 C'heripika 3 3 15
Spitfire 2 10 28 Gipsy Girl 2 27  


Takumono and Dorothy gave up, while Hole I, Irish Adamate, and Sleuthhound were non-starters.

(Excerpts transcribed from the Times of London, Sep. 11, 1908, p. 3.)

[Thanks to Greg Calkins for help in preparing this page — LF]