Alexandra Cup & Jericho Trophy: Challenge Trophies

Our challenger trophies are Match Race competitions.
The Alexandra Cup is a US/Canada award requiring an American Challenger as well as a Canadian Defender. Click below for more information.

The Jericho Cup is a friendship challenge between Royal Vancouver Yacht Club and our friends at San Diego Yacht Club. More information below.  

  • Alexandra Cup (US / Canada)
    • Alexandra Cup Challenge 2017

      The right to defend or challenge is open to all yacht clubs in Canada (Defender) and in the USA (Challenger) provided the clubs are registered with their national authority. If you are interested please contact David R. Everett at

      In late 2016, the Alexandra Cup Trustees received an intent to challenge for the Alexandra Cup. The challenge will take place June 16-18. 

      Support Documents (PDF files):

      Alexandra Cup Charter

      Suggested Form of Request to Challenge

      Notice of Race (NOR)


      In accordance with the Alexandra Cup Charter the following individuals have been appointed as Trustees of the Cup as of November 1, 2009:

      Bob Andrew ~ Royal Vancouver Yacht Club

      Judy Day ~ Royal Vancouver Yacht Club
      David Everett (Chair) ~ Royal Vancouver Yacht Club
      Chris Otorowski ~ Seattle Yacht Club
      Roger Pawley ~ Seattle Yacht Club
      Jack Sullivan ~ Seattle Yacht Club

      The trustees may be contacted by e-mailing the Trustee Chair, David Everett at


      For over 100 years Seattle and Vancouver, sister cities by virtue of their ocean settings and love of sailing, have been in fierce but friendly competition in yachting. This was especially evident at the beginning of the last century when sailing races between Canada and the U.S. were given front page coverage in both Vancouver and Seattle newspapers and the general public followed these races with the avidness that rabid hockey fans exhibit today, with constant updates by telegraph between the two cities.

      Competition really heated up in 1907 when, then B.C. Lt. Gov. James Dunsmuir presented the Alexandra Cup for competition. The first major battles for the Alexandra Cup were sailed in 45 foot LOA Linear Rule ‘29 Raters’. The first race, held in Seattle in 1907 was won by the U.S. yacht Spirit over Canada’s Alexandra. In the second contest in 1908 Canada’s Alexandra bested the Seattle entry Spirit to win the Cup. The 1909 race ended in an acrimonious dispute over Seattle’s new yacht Spirit II and competition for the Alexandra Cup ceased.

      Racing between the two cities suffered a seven year hiatus, but starting in 1914 contests resumed in Universal Rule “R” Class boats; the glamour class of the day. At stake was the imposing Lipton Cup, a trophy that Sir Thomas Lipton himself established in the Pacific Northwest in 1912. In 14 years of competition, Vancouver was never able to field a challenger capable of beating Seattle’s Ted Geary designed Sir Tom. Even the deep pockets and sporting passion of B.T. Rogers’ purpose built Turenga (frequently skippered by Royal Vancouver Yacht Club (RVYC) member Paddy Thomson's grandfather, Ron Maitland) could never quite catch Sir Tom. In the 1920s, the Club tried again with Patricia, this time using a C.E. Nicholson (of Camper & Nicholson) design. Patricia was faster than Turenga but not fast enough to best Sir Tom. Other challengers followed: Riowna in 1925, Lady Pat in 1927; but Sir Tom, despite now being 15 years old, flourished unbeaten.

      It remained for a syndicate of Vancouver yachtsmen to commission a new challenger in 1927, again designed by Charles Nicholson. Lady Van, built at Vancouver Drydock, measured just shy of 39 feet overall, with a waterline length of 22.9 feet and a beam of 7.4 feet. In her first year of competition, she shaved Sir Tom's lead down to seconds. In her second season (1929), she won the Lipton Cup for Vancouver at last, with Jack Cribb at the helm. Sir Tom won again in 1930, but Jack Cribb in Lady Patricia took the Lipton Cup in 1931 and 1932. After that, the white hulled sloop Lady Van was purchased by Royal Vancouver Yacht Club member Eric Hamber who campaigned her to frequent victories in local races. With Harry Wylie at the helm, she won the Lipton Cup successively from 1934 to 1936, again in 1937 with Harry’s daughter Dorothy Wylie at the helm, then with Harry back on the helm, 1938, 1939 and 1940.

      With the outbreak of the Second World War, R-Class racing in Pacific coastal waters began to die away. By 1942, defence regulation required all Vancouver yachts to stay east of Jericho base, and racing ceased completely until the end of the war.

      The good relationship between RVYC and Seattle Yacht Club has mended the rift of 1909 and the tie-breaking race for the Cup was held in 2008 in Vancouver with Canada retaining the Cup. A challenge was received and accepted by RVYC in late 2009 from the Seattle Yacht Club for a re-match. Three beautifully restored ‘R’ boats competed for the Alexandra Cup in October, 2010. The Canadian Defender Eliminations saw a spirited match between Lady Van (RVYC) and Aloha (SNSYC) with Lady Van prevailing and being awarded the Jack Cribb Memorial Trophy and named the Canadian Defender. The Canada-USA Challenge for the Alexandra Cup was ultimately won by Lady Van sailing against SYC’s Pirate.

      The event was held again in 2011; a challenge for the Cup had been issued by St Francis Yacht Club specifying 'R' boats as the weapon of choice. In this series, RVYC's Lady Van prevailed over St Francis's Ace.

      © 2011, David S. Williams – RVYC

  • Jericho Trophy (RVYC / SDYC)
    • A long tradition of Inter-Club racing between Royal Van & San Diego Yacht Club in a Match Race for the Jericho Cup.
      If you are interested in participating in the Jericho Cup please contact Peter Wealick at .
      Below is an article published in the January 2014 issue of Seabreeze:


      By Peter Wealick

      Hello all,

      The RVYC team arrived in San Diego on Thursday, November 21 in preparation for the Friday fleet race. Those who arrived early met at the San Diego Yacht Club, where we were greeted by our SDYC friends. The skippers’ meeting for the fleet race was scheduled for 0930 hrs the next day, so we had to resist the overwhelming offer of free drinks from our competitor. We were greeted by a downpour the next morning and most of us envisioned a day of rain. Fortunately there was no wind and our scheduled start of noon was postponed. After an hour the sun broke through the clouds and we were off -sailing to the start area east of Harbor Island. It was an hour’s sail to the playground. The talk at the dock was positive, in that the SDYC team felt that we would do well. In the past we have always won the fleet race for the Can-Am Friendship Race Trophy.

      The wind was shifty during the day, but the skills learned from sailing in English Bay did us well and we did not disappoint the SDYC team. The RVYC team won the majority of the races and once again secured the Can-Am Friendship Race Trophy.

      On the Saturday (November 23), we were placed on boats for SDYC’s Hot Rum series. This race is approximately 25 miles in length with about 140 competitors on boats as small as 24 feet all the way up to 80 foot maxis. Our team members crewed on TP52s, J120, R-class, and Flying Tigers, to name a few. It was an amazing sight to watch the staggered starts and the chaos that occurred around the second mark as the larger boats caught up to the smaller ones. I was sailing on a J120, trimming the genoa, answered a call from our skipper to go from a reach to a beat because there was a larger boat overtaking us from behind. I finished my job and glanced behind to see who we were fighting off, it was Dennis Connors on his 80’ Stars and Stripes. Fortunately our response was sufficient to force him to tack away and not roll over us.

      When the race was over, we cleaned up our boat and headed to the bar. The sun was shining and the deck at San Diego Yacht Club was swarming with 300 plus thirsty sailors. Everyone enjoyed the day. Those of us who travelled with their better half found each other in the swarm of people and heard reports of a fantastic time ashore. Thanks to the lovely ladies of SDYC for the onshore entertainment.

      Our next sailing day was Sunday; the event: match racing. The sky was a bright blue without a cloud to be seen. At the 0930 hrs skippers’ meeting we were told we would be racing off the downtown shores. We rigged our boats and off we went. Along the way, all the boats were picked up and towed to the race area. It's really something to be towed at 15 knots in a J-22. When we arrived the winds were light and shifty, so the race committee waited until the winds filled in. The day of sailing proved tricky because of the shifts. There were many passing opportunities that each club took advantage of. We had a total of five match races. It was a tight series, with the teams from RVYC keeping the pressure on until the very last race. We finished two points behind the SDYC team. Had the RVYC team won one more race and tied, we would have brought the Jericho Trophy home, because the tiebreaker would have been in our favour. The results of our teams’ efforts are a direct result of the RVYC Match Racing Programme.

      Many thanks to SDYC for hosting a fabulous event. Everyone had a great time and got caught up with our southern friends. Next year is our turn to host this inter-club challenge. SDYC, make sure you bring the Jericho Trophy with you, because we will not be letting you take it home. We are all looking forward to next year’s friendship challenge.