THE PREMIER TROPHY
The Challenge Cup
In 1923, the RSYC gained its most precious treasure when Sir Thomas Lipton gave the Club the Lipton Challenge Cup, a magnificent silver trophy. Today, the Lipton Cup is given pride of place at the Singapore Sports Museum.
Sir Thomas Lipton (1850–1931) was born in Glasgow, Scotland, although his parents were from Ulster, in Northern Ireland. Early in life, he made a fortune in the grocery business and developed his famous Lipton Tea. He put his fortune to good use by supporting charities, and was knighted by Queen Victoria in 1898. Sir Thomas Lipton became an international celebrity, and a friend of Queen Victoria’s son, King Edward VII.
Besides being a tea merchant and a philanthropist, Sir Thomas Lipton was also an avid yachtsman. He joined the prestigious Royal Ulster Yacht Club and entered several yachts, each named Shamrock, in the America’s Cup, and earned a reputation as a great sportsman – proof, perhaps, that what makes a sportsman truly great is his ability to lose gracefully. He donated trophies to yacht clubs in various countries, including the United States and New Zealand.