Category: 1937 : CHALLENGE N°16

Endeavour II jumps the gun, race IV, 1937 America's cup off Rhode Island vendu par Sotheby's, New York, on vendredi 14 avril 2000RANGER WINS FOURTH RACE IN ROW AND KEEPS AMERICA'S CUP IN U. S.

Vanderbilt Yacht Sets Series Record, 3:07:;49, for 30-Mile Triangle.
Endeavour II Trails by 3 Mins. 37 Secs., Best Showing, Though Forced Back for Premature Start

Harold S. Vanderbilt's Ranger today won her fourth straight race and thus brought about the sixteenth successful defense of the America's Cup for the New York Yacht Club.

The fourth and concluding race of the series was sailed on the next day, August 5, around a triangular course. The breeze was still southwest with a velocity of about twelve and a half miles an hour at the start. This race was around a triangular course, ten miles to a leg, the first course being to windward, directly southwest, the second leg cast by south, a reach, and the final leg north by west one-half west, another reach. Near the windward mark the breeze got up to close to twenty statute miles an hour but faded off toward the second mark. At the finish it was sixteen statute miles an hour.

This was the race in which Endeavour II established a new record in that she was the first cup yacht on record to have crossed the starting line ahead of the gun and was recalled to start over again. For seven or eight minutes before the start, there was a regular dog fight around the starting line between the two big yachts which were being sailed more like Frostbite dinghies. Each gibed, tacked and spun around for all the world like two small class boats. At the start, both were on the starboard tack with Endeavour II ahead and slightly to leeward. However, she was early and her nine second lead at this point cost her one minute and fifteen seconds as she had to swing hack around the buoy and again cross the line. The remarkable thing was that she did not lose more time.

ENDEAVOUR II and RANGER on starboard close-hauled tacks at starting line, which ENDEAVOUR II has crossed too early, the starting buoy can be seen just over ENDEAVOUR II's stern. Endeavour II starting to gibe around to recross the line. ENDEAVOUR II on starboard rounding the mark after jumping the gun at the start.

While Endeavour ll was going through this maneuver, Ranger had crossed, stood out a short distance and then come about on the port tack so that she could cover Endeavour. JONES Brian J., *1965 (United Kingdom) Title : The America's Cup, 1937, the fourth and final race: Endeavour jumping the gun (the buoy is not on the good side of Endeavour II)Endeavour came over the line then on the port tack which put Ranger to windward and slightly ahead of her. Ranger seemed to be working more and more to windward and at 1:16 both yachts went about on the starboard tack. Endeavour ll seemed to be going much better in the freshening breeze. Then Sopwith started another of those lacking duels of his with a tack every two minutes for the next sixteen minutes. Ranger, always keeping him covered, only came about six times and ignored Endeavour’s last two tacks as Ranger was laying the weather mark. Ranger was a little over half a mile ahead. She rounded the mark at 1:57:45 and Endeavour II came around at 2:01:50. Ranger had established a new record for a cup race windward leg on a triangular course, beating the old Endeavour's mark made in 1934 by thirty-four seconds.

The big quadrilateral Genoa jib broke out quickly after Ranger rounded with a reaching staysail underneath. Endeavour ll set her high cut Genoa in a hurry after rounding with the usual staysail under it. Endeavour II’s performance on the next two legs was better than Ranger’s as she continually picked up on the American but not enough to threaten her. The reach to the second mark was uneventful with the exception that Endeavour ll gained thirty-four seconds on the leader.

RANGER CROSSING FINISH LINE FOR FOURTH VICTORY IN ROW OVER ENDEAVOUR IIRanger gibed around the mark at 2 :54:51 and Endeavour gibed around at 2:58:26. On the final leg both yachts stood the shortest course to the finish and nothing whatever happened except that Endeavour gained two seconds.

Ranger finished at 3:47:49 and Endeavour II finished at 3:51:26, both yachts receiving a tremendous ovation from the rather small spectator fleet assembled at the finish line. Ranger’s time was the fastest turned in for a Cup Race since 1871.

Outside of the slight delay at the start of the first race, the series went off in well-nigh perfect shape. Each day was beautiful except for a slight amount of fog on the second race day. Good, steady breezes, fine weather, and a course kept entirely clear of all spectator interference, will make the series long remembered. There were no accidents to the yachts and so far as is known, none to the spectators either. The fleet on the first day comprised around 800 boats of various types but the number dwindled each day to a mere handful on the last day. The United States Coast Guard, under command of Captain James F. Hottel, maintained a perfect patrol of the course at all times.

RACE 4 - AUGUST 5 - Triangle, 3x10 miles - Start 11:40
1 Ranger 1:17:55 0:57:07 0:52:47 3:07:49  
2 Endeavour II 1:22:00 0:56:38 0:52:48 3:11:26 3' 37"

Ranger has been pronounced to be the “super” class J yacht and there is no doubt at all but what she must come close to it. However, her wonderfully trained crew, her thoroughly competent skipper, Harold S. Vanderbilt, may have had a lot to do with it. The combination of skipper, crew, and yacht is the real answer. Then, too, one must not forget W. Starling Burgess and Sparkman & Stephens who collaborated in designing the hull. To Professor K. S. M. Davidson of Stevens Institute of Technology must also go credit for his highly valuable model towing experiments which had so much to do with the development of Ranger’s hull form.