California Redwood Burl Challenge

The trophy for the Classics 6 metres in the European Championships is an enormous piece of silver called the President’s Cup, which was given by President Woodrow Wilson for a regatta sailed in 6 metres at the 1915 Panama Pacific Exposition in San Francisco. The trophy was shown in major cities across the country before the big event and originally sat on a California Redwood burl pedestal.

There were only 2 boats in the 1915 6 metre regatta, US 1 Lady Betty (the first USA 6 meter, built in San Francisco in under 30 days just for the event) and Nurdug IV, the current European Champion, which was sent by King Christian X of Denmark.

Nurdug IV won the regatta for Denmark 2- 1 and the trophy went to the Royal Danish Yacht Club (KDY) and stayed there for 70 years until the KDY hosted a world championships for the ILC 40 class, which fell apart a few years later.

Matt Cockburn of the North American 6 Metre Association found the trophy in Italy with the last ILC 40 class winner, who graciously returned it to the KDY, which hosted the 6mR Europeans in 2002. The KDY re-deeded the trophy back to the 6 metres at that event.

There’s poetic justice that the European Championship Trophy is from the USA, especially considering the big role President Wilson played in brokering the peace after WW1. It would be awesome for a USA boat to win it, even more so if the boat came from a San Francisco Yacht Club (St. Francis Yacht Club), whose current setting came about partly as a result of the development of the Marina District for the 1915 Panama Pacific Exposition.
Lucie’s challenge at the 6 Metre 2012 European Championship – ” California Redwood Burl Challenge” – is to bring back the President’s Cup and re- mount the Trophy on California Redwood Burl


  1. Dear All,

    While checking out our various websites for EC 2012 via Google, I found the above conversation about the President’s Cup, or the President Woodrow Wilson Trophy.

    While I, as the the president of ISMA at the time, negotiated with KDY for the 2002 EC i Copenhagen, I suggested, that the club should try to find an old Six Metre Trophy stored in club to put i back to the class at the 2002 EC.

    I almost fainted, when I saw, what they brought.., so it is, indeed, a good example, which all major clubs with old 6-Metre trophies can follow.


    Thomas Lundqvist

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