In the history of ocean racing, the story of Atlantic is best summarised by a quotation from Alfred Loomis's classic work on the subject, first published in 1936:
"The record of the three-masted schooner Atlantic in the race of 1905 overshadows every other incident of the fourth transatlantic contest. Favoured by fresh breezes and strong quartering gales and by a hull speed sufficient to keep her in them, Atlantic raced from Sandy Hook to the Lizard at a pace that swept her into the gallery of imperishable fame."
The 1905 race, titled the Kaiser's Cup after the magnificent gold cup put up by Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany, was from the Sandy Hook lightship to the Lizard, a well-tried course of approximately 3,000 miles. Leaving on 18th May, Atlantic romped across in 12 days, 4 hours, 1 minute and 19 seconds for a distance of 3,014 miles, almost a full day ahead of her nearest rival. Had she not run into a calm right at the very end of the race, she would have won in under 12 days and although denied this astonishing achievement, her record nevertheless stood for over fifty years and was still extant when Loomis wrote his standard history of ocean racing.
Atlantic herself was a big steel three-masted centre-board schooner designed by Gardner & Cox of New York and built by Townsend & Downey in their Shooter's Island yard in 1903. Registered at 206 tons net, she measured 144½ feet in length with a 29½ foot beam, carried 18,500 square feet of sail and was owned by Wilson Marshall of Bridgeport, Connecticut.