The Schneider Trophy Races: The Extraordinary True Story of Aviation's Greatest Competition
‘Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines meets Le Mans. Hugely entertaining. And deadly serious’ Rowland White
It was the greatest international competition of its day – a thrilling, globe-trotting, high speed air racing series that married cutting-edge technology with astonishing skill, bravery and danger.
Duelling at 400 mph just a few feet from sea surface left pilots little margin for error. For over a decade, as aircraft of Great Britain, the United States, France and Italy fought for the prize, the Schneider Trophy represented the pinnacle of aviation development.
A succession of world records fell to machines that combined super-charged brute power with streamlined good looks. With the RAF’s Supermarine S6B, legendary aircraft designer R.J Mitchell honed the genius that produced the Spitfire, while Rolls-Royce advanced the state-of-the-art with an powerful V-12 engine that paved the way for its war-winning masterpiece, the Merlin.