The Gold Cup

The Head of the Schuylkill Regatta is proud to partner with The Philadelphia Gold Challenge Cup Foundation to bring a timeless tradition back to the Schuylkill River.

The Philadelphia Gold Challenge Cup event, otherwise known as “The Gold Cup,” began in 1920, during the heyday of Philadelphia rowing. The event pitted the best amateur male single scullers in the world against each other in a sprint race on the famed Schuylkill River course. Philadelphia’s own John B. Kelly Sr. was the first recipient. The contest, and the cup, disappeared in the early 1960s, only to reemerge in 2011 after a 50-year hiatus. A private group of Philadelphia rowing enthusiasts led by the late businessman and philanthropist Herb Lotman rediscovered the Gold Cup and reinstated the event and tradition to its rightful place in single scull rowing prominence, with the positive expansion of the competition to women.  The Gold Challenge Cup Foundation was thereby founded in 2011 to resurrect the most storied race in Philadelphia’s rich rowing history and one of the most exciting rowing competitions outside of the Olympic Games. The top amateur single scullers compete against each other in a sprint race on the famed Schuylkill River course.  Learn more about The Gold Cup’s history.

The 2018 Gold Cup event will take place on Saturday, October 27 and is the final leg of the inaugural Gold Cup Triple Challenge, the first international rowing series that offers prize money of $50,000 to any rower, male or female, who places first in the following three 2018 single-scull championship events: Henley Royal Regatta, the World Rowing Championships, and the Philadelphia Gold Cup race. Stay tuned as the competition heats up!



Gold Cup Winners 

The celebrated names of the international rowing elite have since been engraved on the Gold Cup.

1920 John B. Kelly (Vesper – United States)
1922 Walter M. Hoover (Duluth Boat Club – United States)
1923 W.E. Garrett Gilmore (Bachelors Barge – United States)
1924 Paul V. Costello (Vesper – United States)
1924 Jack Beresford (England)
1925 Jack Beresford (England)
1928 H.R. Pearce (Australia)
1935 Charles A. Campbell (Canada)
1936 Gustav Schaefer (Germany)
1940 Joseph W. Burk (Penn A.C.R.A. – United States)
1948 Mervyn Wood (Australia)
1950 Mervyn Wood (Australia)
1952 Jurij Tjukalov (Soviet Union)
1956 Vyacheslav Ivanov (Soviet Union)
1958 Vyacheslav Ivanov (Soviet Union)
1960 Vyacheslav Ivanov (Soviet Union)
1962 Vyacheslav Ivanov (Soviet Union)
1964 Vyacheslav Ivanov (Soviet Union)
1966 Don Spero (NYAC – United States)
2011 Mirka Knapkova (Czech Republic), Iztok Čop (Slovenia)
2014 Kim Brennan (Australia), Kjetil Borch (Norway)
2015 Kim Brennan (Australia), Kjetil Borch (Norway)
2016 Kim Brennan (Australia), Damir Martin (Croatia)