The Tea Clippers' Race.— By the last mail we have news of the result of this year's race from China to London. The Taeping has again the honor of landing the first of the new teas, though, in point of passage, the Ariel beat her by five hours, and both were eclipsed by the Sir Launcelot, which made the passage in 98 days. The Fiery Cross arrived home in 110 days, Maitland 113 days, Belted Will 107 days. The Times, of September 24, has the following remarks on this great ocean contest:— This year's race has proved quite as extraordinary as that of last year. The Taeping, it seems, is not the winner, after all, the Ariel, 853 tons, having arrived yesterday morning in the East India Docks in about five hours less time than that in which the journey was accomplished by the Taeping. The Ariel sailed from Foo-chow-foo on the 13th of June, at half-past 8 o'clock in the morning, while the Taeping sailed nine days previously, at 11 o'clock in the morning, arriving in the London Docks between 2 and 3 o'clock p.m. on Saturday week last, the 14th. The number of days from the 4th of June to the 14th of September is 102. The Ariel was precisely the same number of days on her voyage, but arriving in the East India Docks at 7 o'clock yesterday morning, she was the winner of the race by five hours. It has been asserted that the Taeping was the winner in the last year's race. It is quite true that both she and the Ariel came up the Channel neck to neck, but the Ariel got in advance of her coming up the river and was the first to arrive off Blackwall. In consequence, however, of there not being sufficient depth of water at the Dock entrance she could not be hauled into the Dock, and had to wait till next tide, while the Taeping passed her and succeeded in getting into the London Docks the moment she came up to them, and thus claimed the prize. Both ships were built at Greenock, in the same year. Lloyd's Register of Shipping furnishes the following details respecting them:— They were both built on the composite principle — iron frames and teak planking. The Ariel is 853 tons, 197 feet 4 inches in length, 33 feet 9 inches in breadth of beam, and 21 feet depth of hold: classed A1 for fourteen years. The Taeping is 767 tons register, 183 feet 7 inches in length, 31 feet in breadth of beam, and 19 feet 9 inches in depth of hold, and also similarly classed. Of the eleven other ships engaged in the race, two — the Fiery Cross, which sailed the day after the Taeping, and the Maitland, which was the first ship out from Foo-choo-foo, passed through the Downs in the course of yesterday afternoon, and were expected to arrive in the river last night. The remainder of the vessels are the Serica, White Adder, Ziba, Taitsing, Flying Spur, Black Prince, Yangtze, Chinaman, and the Golden Spur. The Ariel, in her report of her recent speakings, passed the Black Prince, White Adder, Serica, and the Fiery Cross. Great as was the interest evinced yesterday to learn the result of the race, another arrival from China completely put in the Ariel and the Taeping in the shade as regards speed. This ship, however, was not in the races. She sailed from Shanghai on the 16th of June, after the departure of most of the ships engaged in the race, took what is termed the eastern passage, and arrived in the Downs yesterday morning, just previous to the Ariel. The eastern route is considerably longer than that taken by the ships in the race: yet she accomplished the voyage in 100 days. Her name is the Sir Launcelot, belonging to Greenock, 886 tons register, commanded by Captain Robinson. She also was built on the Clyde, and her dimensions, measurement on deck, &c., are precisely the same as the Ariel. She spoke on her voyage three of the race ships — namely, the Chinaman, on the 3rd of August, off Madagascar, as also the Yangtze: and on the 11th of August the Flying Spur, off Algoa Bay.

The Brisbane Courier, Friday 29 November 1867.

Transcribed by Lars Bruzelius.

Sjöhistoriska Samfundet | The Maritime History Virtual Archives | Maritime history | Search.

Copyright © 2009 Lars Bruzelius.