Racing Skiff "Rampant"

The London to Paris Air Race has been held annually since 1836 and is the longest-running flying contest in the world. Although the event has enjoyed a lower public profile since Transatlantic flight ushered in the modern era of competition for the Americas Cup, the London-Paris Race remains one of the most sought-after prizes in aeronautics.

Captain Lewis Galloway is, without doubt, the Race's most famous champion. Winner on no less than seven occasions, he still holds the record for consecutive wins with five in a row - all of them in his world-famous racing skiff "Rampant". That his final victory in 1874 was posthumous, his flaming craft plunging across the finish line beneath the Arc de Triomphe only seconds before erupting in an enormous fireball, only adds poignancy to his legend.

Further photographic images of this famous aeronaut's racing machine, many of them in colour, can be viewed here.