Schneider Trophy special: Venice 1921
More rule changes happened again this year. The aircraft had to be fully-loaded and moored for a period of time before the race, to check general seaworthiness. This was an attempt to stop the participation of specially built, stripped-down racing ‘freaks’. Entrants also had to pay, as well as a fee, a 5000F registration deposit, to discourage meaningless entries.
The Italians prepared 16 different entrants - of 7 different designs. The only other nation, France, submitted one. Some people may see where this is heading..
Only three aircraft managed to start the race, and they were all Italian - two Macchi M.7s, and one Macchi M.19. The M.19 caught fire on the 12th lap - both crew escaped (it was the only two-crew aircraft that ever flew in the competition). The leading M.7 ran out of fuel only a mile from the finish, leaving the slowest aircraft, piloted by Giovanni de Briganti, to win the race, averaging 117.9mph (189.7km/h)
One of the aspects of the trophy that captured the world’s attention was the rule that the Trophy would be permanently kept - i.e won outright, forever, finished, finito - by any nation who won it three times in five years. With back-to-back wins, Italy were closing in…
(art again via Speedbirds. thanks)