12/31/2008. On December 5, 1912, the wealthy French engineer, pilot and balloonist Jacques Schneider (January 25, 1879 - May 1, 1928) announced a trophy for an 150 nautical miles seaplane race, to be held under the umbrella of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale. Officially known as 'La Coupe d'Aviation Maritime Jacques Schneider' (commonly as the Schneider Trophy, or Schneider Cup), the race was initially intended to stimulate innovative design and construction of transport seaplanes, however, it turned out into a speed contest. Eventually eleven races where flown between 1913 and 1931.
Supermarine produced a number of biplane flying boats (powered by pusher radials) for the contest: the 1919 entry was the Sea Lion I (G-EALP, a converted Baby); the 1922 entry was the Sea Lion II (G-EBAH c/n 1154, a converted Sea King II); and finally, the 1923 entry was the G-EBAH modified into the Sea Lion III.
From 1925 Supermarine produced a number of twin-float monoplanes, powered by in-line engines, the first was the sole S.4 (G-EBLP c/n 1215, later s/n N197), followed in 1926/1927 by three S.5's (s/n N219 to N221). In 1929 two S.6's (s/n N247, N248) were produced that were converted into S.6A's for the 1931 contest. For the same contest two additional aircraft were produced, designated S.6B (s/n S1595, S1596).
S.6B S1595 was flown for the first time by Squadron Leader A.H. Orlebar of the RAF High Speed Flight at RAF Calshot on July 29, 1931. Power came from a 2,350 hp Rolls-Royce R twelve-cylinder water-cooled supercharged
V-engine. Although the sole challenger in the 1931 contest, Flight Lieutenant J.N. Boothman flew S1595 on September 13 only to retain the Schneider Trophy for Great Britain.
Fitted with a 2,600 hp sprint version of the Rolls-Royce R engine fed by a special fuel, and flown by Flight Lieutenant G.H. Stainforth, the aircraft established a world speed record of 405.5 mph (655.79 kmh) on September 29, 1931. The aircraft is preserved in the Sience Museum since 1932.