Rathbone Trophy

A prestigious space racing award, originally known as the Red Riband. It was started in 2815 and has been run in a variety of forms in the intervening centuries.

In essence is is a high performance interplanetary shuttle race between Earth and Mars. Traditionally the start point is at Las Vegas spaceport and the landing is a point in the Orson Welles Crater on Old Mars.

The distance and times for the race vary according to the distance from Earth to Mars - typically an average of about 1.5 AU.

The rules of the race are that the vessels must take off from the Earth's surface and land on the surface of Old Mars. They may not use in-flight refuelling, additional JATO packs or support vessels.
There is also a limit on all up tonnage of 500 tonnes.
And there must have at least 12 people on board.

Originally an annual event, the race is nowadays run every three years.

The speed record (after adjustment for current distance) is held by 'Spirit of Venus' a class C IP Shuttle sponsored by Cyberweb, back in 3055.

The last race was held in 3212 and the winner was 'Imperial Aspirations' sponsored by Lexcorp and captained by Geodarno Tendashi a well known socialite, adventurer an nephew of the controversial Admiral Tendashi.