You are on page 1of 6

By Colonel Leonard A.

Blascovich, CAP
National Historian


Its nice to write, talk and reflect about some of the activities that were available to CAP Cadets &
Seniors during CAP's "Golden Age" 1948 to 1962. This is one program that was and I'm sorry to say
is no more, a truly outstanding program that had great public relations impact. Matched the best of
the best from both sides of the border. But I wonder ...... would it really take too much effort to
restart? But to paraphrase the question posed in the Kevin Costner (1989) movie "Field Of
Dreams" when he was told "build it and they will come, I wonder now in 2001 if we start the IDC
again who would come?

In 1947 based upon the cadet training program which required proficiency in standard drill "without arms".
General Lucas V. Beau the National Commander instituted the National Drill Competition (NDC). Utilizing the
rules set up by the U.S. Drill Competition Committee, and input from the United States Air Force Ceremonial
Detachment located at Bolling AFB, Washington DC and current Drill & Ceremonies practices of the period as used
by the Army ROTC program.

Major General Lucas Victor Beau, Commanding General of the Civil Air Patrol, (Oct 1947 to Dec 1955) and a well
known figure with countries having aviation cadet programs or showed an interest in establishing one. General Beau
was well liked and had a long time association with the Air Cadet League of Canada, an organization started in 1939
and one that the CAP Cadet program was modeled after when it began in October 1942.

The Challenge:
General Beau, while attending a planning meeting in April 1947 held in Canada to help organize the first
International Air Cadet Exchange Program which was scheduled to start in the summer of 1948 between the and US
and Canada. When it was mentioned that CAP was establishing a National Drill Competition event similar to and
along the lines of the annual drill competition and exhibition that was held in Canada for the Air League. A point
was made that the CAP Cadets were excellent marchers, and the Canadians counted that they too were suburb Drill
men. An thus began the challenge.

The Trophy:
General Beau donated in 1948 for presentation at the first meet held in conjunction with the New York City
Jubilee at Idlewild Airport Jamaica, Long Island, (later to become JFK International Airport) a heavy Sterling
Silver trophy. This distinctive trophy which is shaped in the form of the circular CAP Shoulder patch, 12 inches in
diameter and 1 inch thick, the top of the circle is an arc with engraved relief block letters that spell out the words
"CIVIL AIR PATROL". For the trophy center piece is a highly polished raised isosceles triangle, set on a circular
blue background with raised 1/4" border, within its center is a raised red 3 bladed propeller, and the raised block
letters "US" is centered on the on the lower half of the blue. The entire circular emblem is mounted on a 18’’ by 6"
wide and 2 inch high base, which has across its front and back sides 3 raised triangles, and at each end has 2
triangles for a total of 10 triangles all around. On each of these triangles will be engraved with the year (above) and
the country (below) of the winner, i.e. 1949 top, CANADA below. On the top of this base is a silver plate
engraved with the following:


Thanks to the Air League Of Canada for the great photo

Award Rules:
The International Drill Competition (IDC) winning team earns the right to hold the Major General Lucas V. Beau
Challenge Trophy for one year, after which it is put up again for competition. The Trophy would be retired in 1957
to the country whose team has won it the greatest number of times.

Rules of Competition:
The Competition was to be judged by four (4) competent Service Judges two (2) from the United States Air Force
and two (2) from the Royal Canadian Air Force. These judges shall elect from among themselves one (1) to act as
chairman. In addition to the aforementioned, the host country will select an officer of its Air Force to act as Chief
Score Keeper and Timer, and the visiting country will select an officer of its Air Force to act as Assistant Score
Keeper and Timer. In addition, none of these officer shall be current active members of International Drill
Competition Committee. This Competition was strictly controlled by the "Articles of Agreement, and Rules of
Competition", International Drill Competition, prepared by the International Drill Competition Committee and
approved by the Civil Air Patrol, and Air Cadet League of Canada. It was amended in 1952, 55 and 56 with some
minor revisions but the original intent in scoring and monitoring remained as first approved in Quebec, Canada on
14 March 1950.

Competition Scoring:
For the 1948-50 IDC scoring was based upon standards used for the Civil Air Patrol's National Drill Competition
and the individual judge's scoring sheet maximum was 100 points. After the approval of the "Articles of Agreement,
and Rules of Competition" as amended in 1952 the individual maximum score was slightly modified and raised to
300 points.

Drill Reference:
Civil Air Patrol trained for standard, in-place and marching maneuvers by using the "U.S. Army Field Manual FM
22-5" (Drill and Ceremonies), the Air Cadet League trained by using the "Royal Army Manual for Field Drill" as its
Event Schedule:
It was decided that the competition would be held annually in the months of July or August of each year and will
be held in the United States of America in the even numbered years, and in Canada on the odd numbered years.

Trophy Location:
The Trophy presently resides in a display case at the Headquarters of the Air League of Canada, 424 Metcalfe
Street, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K2P 2C3, phone (613) 235-1409.

Canadian Training:
The Royal Canadian Air Cadets from the League were selected by competition from various squadrons all over
Canadian Provinces and from the Drill Instructors Course which usually was held at Greenwood, N.S. outside of
Toronto, or Abbotsford B.C., The 40 selected Cadets then undergo special training to prepare them for the
International Competition under the control of the Royal Canadian Air Force instructors. For the International Drill
Competition held In the United States Teams from the East and West of Canada usually compete and the winning
team went onto represent Canada in the Competition. Furthermore, each Royal Canadian Air Cadets who participate
in the IDC received all uniforms and accessories plus were given a $100.00 Canadian Savings Bond upon
completion of training program.

Canadian Uniforms:
The Royal Canadian Air Cadets wore the standard Canadian Air Cadet blue green tunic and matching pants with
flight cap, standard rank and hat insignia including the League shoulder flash. For the competition the cadet wore a
wide white tight mesh web dress belt with brass buckle, and white gloves. White leggings were an option on some
of the teams; typical black Canadian military shoes were the norm with a very high "spit shine". Each cadet after
training for the Drill Instructor Course and the IDC was awarded a white whistle cord that was worn around the left
arm. This white cord along with the dated IDC certificate presented at the competition dinner signified that the cadet
was a participant at the International Drill Competition for that year.

Civil Air Patrol Training:

Whereas, the 40 CAP Cadets were selected primarily from the team that won the National Drill Competition in
total. After the 1950 International Drill Competition in some instance the cadets were hand picked from other teams
that participated at the NDC. This became the norm after the 1956 National Drill Competition (NDC) when the
team’s size was reduced from 40 to 25 members. Starting with the 1950 IDC, NDC Champions along with selected
Cadets were trained under the control of the United States Air Force Drill Team Instructors from the USAF
Ceremonial Detachment located at Bolling AFB, Washington DC. Prior to 1949 IDC the instructor were usually
only advisors to the USAF-CAP and the teams were trained under their CAP trainers from the Wing that prepared
them for the NDC.

CAP Uniforms:
Starting with the 1950 IDC CAP cadet were each issued Air Force uniforms either the shade "1" khaki's or the
Blue shade 84 Air Force "Ike" jacket or blouse type of uniform jacket and pants. Each uniform was custom fitted
and tailored. The only distinguishing items added were the CAP Cadet Breast Patch, and CAP Buttons if needed,
usually no ribbons, aeronautical awards or wing patches were worn, while performing in the Drill Competition.
Furthermore, the cadets also were issued 2 sets of Jump Boots or low quarters shoes, one pair they usually wore out
after almost 4 weeks of constant drilling and practice and the other one was spit shined and to be worn while in
competition. Jump boots were dressed with white laces and white leggings were always worn with boots or low
quarters while in competition uniform.

Each cadet also received a large (2") white belt with chrome buckle and white gloves. This belt, buckle and gloves
was the influence of the USAF Drill Team advisors and a trademark of the United States Air Force Ceremonial
Detachment which besides the Drill Team included the Band, Drum & Bugle Corp., Honor Guard and the Fife &
Drum Corp. The CAP Cadet uniform hat was first the authorized khaki flight cap (48, 49) with the CAP cadet
emblem, later (50) it became the blue shade 84 flight cap when the new USAF uniform was authorized replacing the
Army type. Again influenced by the USAF Drill Team a service cap with white front chin strap and a white rear
chin strap, this was a special modification to the standard CAP Cadet uniform, service caps were not allowed for
cadet wear. The selected special service hat emblem was either the World War 2 up swept wings CAP Senior
Officer Hat device, or the round senior enlisted device. The 1950 IDC CAP team wore white helmet liners; this was
the one and only time this device was worn by a marching team.

Also starting with the 1950 IDC each CAP cadet was awarded a dated certificate of participation and a white
fourragere with silver tips, this fourragere signified that the cadet was a participant in the IDC. And it was semi
officially approved and usually allowed to be worn after the IDC participation as a part of their standard CAP Cadet
uniform. After the International Drill Competition the cadets had to turn in all USAF issued uniforms and
accessories, with the exception of the boots or shoes and fourragere.



1948 to 1957

LOCATION: Idewild Airport, Long Island STATE: New York HOST COUNTRY: USA
RUNNER-UP United States TEAM CAPTAIN SGT George Cohn (NY)

LOCATION: Canadian National Exhibition CITY: Toronto HOST COUNTRY: Canada
WINNER Canada TEAM CAPTAIN WO1 William Stewart Points 358
RUNNER-UP United States TEAM CAPTAIN SGT Arthur Barton (NJ) Points 347

Note: Civil Air Patrol letter 000.77 Dated 12 December 1949, Subject: Drill Competition, TO: all AF-CAP Liaison
Officers and Wing Commanders. Outlining the rules of and requirements to conduct drill competitions on a Wing,
National and International level.

WINNER Canada TEAM CAPTAIN WO2 John Morrison Points 374
RUNNER-UP United States TEAM CAPTAIN Unknown Points 367

Note: The Articles of Agreement were signed in Montebello, Quebec, Canada 14 March 1950, by Major General
Lucas V. Beau, USAF National Commander, Civil Air Patrol, Auxiliary of the United States Air Force, and Mr. M.
Banker Bates, President, Air Cadet League of Canada.

LOCATION: Canadian National Exhibition CITY: Toronto HOST COUNTRY: Canada
WINNER Great Britain TEAM CAPTAIN F/SGT R. Kyle Points 367
1stRUNNER-UP Canada TEAM CAPTAIN L.Tighe Points 362
2 RUNNER-UP United States TEAM CAPTAIN CPT I. B. Abrams (NY) Points 360

Note: In 1951 with bagpipes skirling and kilts swinging, a precision drill team of the Scottish Air Cadets marched
onto the huge outdoor stage at the Canadian National Exhibition one day in August and marched off again with the
General Beau International Challenge Trophy. To win the trophy, the Scotch cadets had to defeat two superbly
trained drill squads representing the United States and Canada. The Scottish team represented the Air Training
Corps of Great Britain and was chosen from seven unit bands located in the counties of Aberdeen, Argll, Perth and
Roxborough as well as the cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow. As massed pipes and drums they had previously
appeared at the Royal Tournament in London, the Royal Air Force Display and other important occasions both in
Scotland and England. They were flown out to Canada by the RCAF but made the return journey by boat, thanks to
the generosity of a big-hearted Scotsman who donated more than $8,000 for this purpose. This was the first and only
time that cadets from the ATC participated.

WINNER United States TEAM CAPTAIN CPT Jorge Luis Montalvo (PR) Points 1143
RUNNER-UP Canada TEAM CAPTAIN WO Donald G. Barnes Points 1108

Note: This was the first year that the United States won the IDC

LOCATION: Canadian National Exhibition CITY: Toronto HOST COUNTRY: Canada
RUNNER-UP United States TEAM CAPTAIN CPT David Payne (UT)

LOCATION: Minnesota State Fair, Minneapolis STATE: Minnesota HOST COUNTRY: USA
WINNER United States TEAM CAPTAIN CPT Gomez (PR) Points 1012
RUNNER-UP Canada TEAM CAPTAIN WO P.R. Murray Points 966

LOCATION: Canadian National Exhibition CITY: Toronto HOST COUNTRY: Canada
WINNER Canada TEAM CAPTAIN WO James Goodhand Points 1130
RUNNER-UP United States TEAM CAPTAIN CPT Rafael Lugo (PR) Points 1114

LOCATION: Minnesota State Fair, Minneapolis STATE: Minnesota HOST COUNTRY: USA
WINNER Canada TEAM CAPTAIN WO Roy A. Lauritsen
RUNNER-UP United States TEAM CAPTAIN CPT Edwin Lopez (PR)

Note: Weekly Bulletin No. 32 dated 23 August 1956 The International Drill Competition Ribbon was established
and authorized for all cadets and seniors that participated in the International Drill Competition (IDC) since its

International Drill Competition Ribbon

LOCATION: Canadian National Exhibition, CITY: Toronto HOST COUNTRY: Canada
WINNER United States TEAM CAPTAIN CPT David P. Kilani (HI)
RUNNER-UP Canada TEAM CAPTAIN WO James E. W. Jackson

Note: At the completion of the 1957 competition held at the Canadian National Exhibition, Toronto Canada the
General Beau Trophy was awarded and retired to Canada permanently according to the rule of the competition. The
Canadian team earned the trophy for winning a total of six (6) 1948, 49, 50, 53, 55, & 56 competitions verse three
(3) 1952, 54 & 57 to the United States and one (1) 1951 to Great Britain.
Historical Tid Bits

Attendance Note:
Mr. Mac Donald, Director of Training for the Air League of Canada. And Major General Lucas Victor "Vic"
Beau USAF, Commanding General, Civil Air Patrol, National Commander and after his retirement from the USAF
in December 1955, both gentleman were present for all ten 1948-57 competitions. General Beau always present the
winning Team Captain the trophy on stage after the last drill event and the tallying of points, and IDC certificates
usually at the Banquet before or after the International Drill Competition.

Final Note:
In 1958 and 1959 we continued the practice of odd year Canada, even year United States of America now we were
holding a "International Drill Exhibition", This Drill Exhibition or Display was canceled after the 1959 event.
Many reasons were stated but its demise was due to the increasing cost to support the activity, combined with the
lack of military airlift and location support from both sides RCAF and USAF. The future of the activity was put on a
study bases after the 1959 Exhibition for two years and never renewed, see National Executive Board Minutes
dated: 8 November 1958, and 1 November 1959.