Two men in a Martinsyde

Everyone remembers Alcock, Brown and their Vickers Vimy, but they had many rivals in the race to fly the Atlantic first — and the one-off Martinsyde Raymor, named after its two pilots, was among them...


The completed Martinsyde Raymor having its Rolls-Royce Falcon engine test-run at Brooklands.

In 1913 Lord Northcliffe, proprietor of the Daily Mail newspaper, drafted a new aerial competition, the details of which appeared on 1 April. Northcliffe was an ardent supporter of the infant art of powered flight, offering huge financial inducements to back the contests he devised. With the aim of “stimulating further progress in aviation” — and publicising the Mail — Northcliffe’s new challenge put up £10,000 for the first person (or persons) to fly the Atlantic Ocean within a 72-hour period, non-stop.

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