Tag Archives: Bonhams

Electric LiveWire aids pandemic recovery

Harley-Davidson has donated a customised electric LiveWire motorcycle autographed by the Davidson family to be auctioned to raise funds for the United Way Worldwide COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund.

The special edition LiveWire also has custom paint and carbonfibre accessories including screen, tail and tank trim.

It is being auctioned online at bonhams.com with auction fees waived. The auction ends on Tuesday 26 May 2020 at 4pm (EST).

The custom LiveWire is #500 of 500 “First Strike” edition LiveWires.

These are specially numbered versions created to celebrate the first 500 units produced of Harley-Davidson’s first production electric motorcycle.

“The Harley-Davidson design team created the custom paint and graphics on this motorcycle to accentuate the natural forms of the LiveWire,” Bekefy says.

“It’s a stunning motorcycle that is truly one of a kind.”

While the auction is available for participants from around the world, the motorcycle can only be registered and retained in the US.

The winning bidder and their guest will take part in an exclusive delivery experience and “behind-the-scenes” Harley-Davidson tour.

This private, hosted experience will include a tour of the Willie G. Davidson Product Development Centre and an archival tour of the Harley-Davidson Museum.

Harley-Davidson museum in MilwaukeeHarley-Davidson museum in Milwaukee

United Way to recovery

United Way’s mission is to aid those on the frontlines and those who are affected by this crisis around the world.

Harley spokesman Jon Bekefy says the company is a “longtime partner of the United Way”.

“(We are) inspired by their continued resilience in this crisis,” he says.

“Harley-Davidson is honoured to play a small part in the relief effort to inspire our community around the world about the open road ahead.”

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Last Vincent Rapide headlines auction

This Vincent Rapide, believe to be one of the first Series-A Rapide’s manufactured and possibly the last Vincent-HRD motorcycle to leave the factory in 1959, will headline the Bonhams Summer Stafford Sale in August.

It was used as a factory demonstrator, Vincent Director’s mount and a road test star.

The Series-A 998cc twin was evolved in 1936, with the apocryphal tale of the design being conceived as a result of two single-cylinder drawings being overlapped. Production of the model began in 1936 for the 1937 season, and ended when war broke out in 1939. Vincent-HRD’s sales brochure for 1938 described the Rapide:

The performance is electric. Power appears almost limitless, yet it is so smooth and controllable that it is a delight to ride, even in thick traffic. There is only one snag we have discovered in owning a “Rapide.” You never get a scrap with another machine, because no ordinary motor cycle can live with a “Rapide.” Here at last is a performance equal to the fastest T.T. models, coupled with silence, comfort, and tractability. A true Jekyll and Hyde.

With a top speed of 110mph, The Series-A Rapide was the fastest production vehicle when launched. Only 78 examples were manufactured, and approximately 50 examples are believed to survive worldwide.

Registered DUR 142, it was retained by the factory as a demonstrator and for promotional purposes. Accordingly, it was loaned to Motor Cycling in April 1938 to be road tested. The machine was taken to Brooklands for speed tests and was subsequently timed at 102 mph.

RapideDUR 142 Clocked 102mph at Brooklands – Motor Cycling April 1938 (© Mortons Archive)

DUR 142 reappeared in 1955, when Vincent-HRD production ceased, and Motor Cycling covered the sad event by testing the last machine off the line, together with DUR 142 which they described as one of “The First” Series “A”

rapideDecember 1955 ‘The Last of the Vincents’ Motor Cycling road test (© Mortons Archive)

The opportunity seldom arises to obtain a Series-A Rapide. Even rarer still, is the opportunity to acquire one with such historical significance. This particular motorcycle has seen service as a factory demonstrator, Vincent Director’s mount, road test star (twice) and was often photographed as the publicity vehicle for one of the most celebrated British motorcycle marques.

Mark Garside, Bonhams Motorcycle and Motor car Representative for the Northern Counties and Scotland commented:

It is particularly gratifying to bring an historic machine such as DUR 142 back into public notice after over half a century of hibernation. Machines such as this come to market very rarely, and it has taken years of patience to successfully consign this particular motorcycle.

Alongside the Vincent-HRD and the Morbidelli Collection, the Summer Stafford Sale will offer a superb range of pre-war ‘golden era’ British motorcycles, including:

1935 BROUGH SUPERIOR 982CC SS80, estimate £65,000 – 80,000

One of 300 surviving (of 460 produced) Matchless-engined SS80s, so-called due to its guaranteed 80mph top speed in road trim. Offered in excellent condition, having been the subject of a ‘nut and bolt’ restoration by top specialist Dave Clark, and featured in The Classic MotorCycle (Sept 2006 edition).

1927 MATCHLESS 982CC M3/S SPORTS SOLO, estimate £28,000-35,000

Rare and charismatic Vintage-era v-twin sports model, featuring Matchless’ own 982cc 50-degree v-twin engine.

1928 MONTGOMERY 680CC TWIN FIVE, estimate £25,000 – 35,000

Another Vintage-era v-twin rarity, the Montgomery was powered by J A Prestwich’s 680cc side valve v-twin engine, and was a direct competitor to the Brough Superior 5-15, although much rarer today. The Montgomery was professionally restored in the early 2000s, has been used extensively on runs (including pillion), and went on to win the ‘Concours Award’ at the 2004 Banbury Run.

OFFERED DIRECTLY FROM THE ESTATE OF THE LATE LES WILLIAMS

1930 AJS 346CC R7 RACING MOTORCYCLE, estimate £25,000 – 35,000

Les Williams was the famous manager of Triumph’s factory works racing team with numerous victories in the 60s and 70s, and co-creator of ‘Slippery Sam’, winner of five consecutive TT production races. Surprisingly perhaps, his own collection comprised rival British marques – including this 1930 AJS 350cc, ridden to 10th place in the 1930 Manx Grand Prix Junior Race.

Other highlights include:

1916 HARLEY-DAVIDSON 1000CC MODEL J & PACKAGE TRUCK SIDECAR, estimate £ 25,000 – 35,000

This Model J was sold new in 1916 with the Package Truck option, a commercial-load carrier which was a runaway success and would remain in production for 42 years. Fully restored five years ago, this example also has the optional three-speed gearbox and electric lighting system and is offered with an additional Harley-Davidson sports sidecar.

 

1909 MINERVA 3½HP WITH WICKER SIDECAR, estimate £ 25,000 – 35,000

This sublime motorcycle from the premier European manufacturer is offered from an important private collection and is a regular entrant in the world-famous Sunbeam Motorcycle Club Pioneer Run.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Morbidelli collection finally goes to auction

A collection of motorcycles gathered over 40 years by motorcycle manufacturer and Grand Prix boss Giancarlo Morbidelli will be offered for sale at auction on 25-26 April 2020.

The collection was to be sold at the annual Bonhams Autumn Stafford Sale on 18-20 October 2019.

However, the auction was postponed due to a delay in the administrative process concerning the export of the machines.

“All necessary export licences for motorcycles have been requested by Bonhams in accordance with Italian law,” a Bonhams spokeswoman says.

With more than 300 motorcycles, the Morbidelli Collection from Pesaro, Italy, will be the largest single private collection of motorcycles yet offered by Bonhams.

“He spent day and night in the museum,” says his son Guianni. “He had no other life.”

Nieto Morbidelli collection for saleGiancarlo Morbidelli and a Morbidelli V8

Giancarlo’s collection includes international brands such as Harley-Davidson, Honda and Benelli ranging from immaculate restorations to prototypes and barn finds.

They represent the passion of the farmer’s son and former woodworking machinist who, while building up a successful engineering firm as his day job, spent his spare time on tuning, racing and later building his own motorcycles. 

Morbidelli highlights

Two examples from the Morbidelli Grand Prix racing motorcycle collection, largely designed and built by Giancarlo, were fabricated by a small, dedicated team in a corner of the Morbidelli woodworking factory. 

These proved to be ‘giant killers’ seeing off international corporations to claim the 125cc Grand Prix World Championship in three consecutive years: 1975, ‘76 and ‘77, as well as winning the 250cc world title in 1977. 

“He was a genius with bikes,” says Gianni.

“He did everything by himself, working in a very small room. 

“Forty years ago, he laid the foundation of this incredible museum, spending a lot of effort, time, energy and money. 

“One part of the museum is dedicated to the period between the end of the 1960s to the 1980s when he built racing motorcycles. It’s our family heritage, a part of our life, but we thought it would be correct to include in the sale two Morbidelli motorcycles that my father built.”

The 1974 Morbidelli 125cc Grand Prix motorcycle is estimated to fetch up to £120,000 ($A214,500).

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale1974 Morbidelli 125

It was raced by the great Angel Nieto to second place in that year’s Spanish and German Grand Prix.

A 250cc machine designed for 15-time Grand Prix world champion Giacomo Agostini, who rode for the team during its golden period in 1976, and came second at Misano is estimated to fetch up £100,000 ($A179,000).

Nieto Morbidelli collection for saleAgostini’s 1976 Moridelli 250

However, the Morbidelli family will retain ownership of the majority of the Morbidelli Grand Prix motorcycles, including the world championship winning 125cc and 250cc examples, raced respectively by Paoli Pileri, Pierpaolo Bianchi and Lego Mario.

Benelli features

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale1942 Benelli 250 GP supercharged

Not surprisingly, the Morbidelli Museum collection in the sale features a strong showing of Benelli motorcycles which were also a great passion of Giancarlo, coming from Pesaro, where this great historic brand was also founded.  

One of the most interesting examples of the marque on offer is the 1942 250cc supercharged 4-cylinder example that could fetch more than £600,000 ($A1m).

This racing machine never actually raced. It was built just in time for motorcycle racing to be stopped due to the war, while supercharging was banned by the FIM in post-war years.

Giancarlo had a personal relationship and friendship with the Benelli family and so was able to procure the original parts which he rebuilt into a fully-functioning motorcycle.

Other Benellis to be offered include:Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale

  • 1950 Benelli 250cc Grand Prix racing motorcycle – the world championship motorcycle ridden to victory by Dario Ambrosini. Estimate £120,000 – 180,000.
  • 1934 Benelli 175cc Bialbero – believed raced by Dorino Serafini, one of only three in the world. Estimate £40,000 – 60,000.
  • 1964 Benelli 250 Grand Prix racing motorcycle, ridden and signed by two-time world champion Tarquino Provini. Estimate £80,000 – 120,000.

Ducati jewel

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale1964 Ducati 125cc

Another jewel of the Morbidelli Collection is the 1964 Ducati 125cc 4-cylinder Grand Prix racing motorcycle, (estimate £400,000 – 600,000), another GP racing machine which never raced. Created by Fabio Taglioni, Ducati’s chief engineer, this motorcycle disappeared for some years before its engine was found in Russia while its chassis reappeared in Yugoslavia, now Croatia. With the two essential components reunited, Giancarlo rebuilt the mythical motorcycle.

Alongside the pristine restorations, there are several unfinished projects in the sale, offering the opportunity to restore these machines as Giancarlo was hoping to.

The collection also comprises motorcycling memorabilia including Giancarlo’s own reference library, original drawings, trophies, signage and other artefacts, giving a complete picture of the museum and the motorcycling world.  Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Pope’s Harley sells for bargain price

A Harley-Davidson signed by Pope Francis has sold at the Bonham’s Autumn Stafford sale in the UK for a bargain at less than half what it was hoped to fetch.

The bike was sold for the bargain price of £42,000 (almost $A80,000) which is a tidy sum that will benefit Catholic Overseas Missions.

However, it’s not as much as was expected with auctioneers tipping the 2016 Custom Cycle “White Unique” would fetch up to $A180,000.

White Unique was created at the suggestion of Dr Thomas Draxler, founder of the Jesus Bikers group in Austria, as a fundraising vehicle, to be donated to the Pontifical Mission Societies (Missio), the official support for Catholic overseas missions.

Pope with holy Harley custom for auction
White Unique

Bavarian-based Harley Davidson dealer, Würzburg Village, supplied the Softail and collaborated with the Jesus Bikers on its customisation.

As the name suggests, the machine is finished in pearlescent white, with Chicano (Mexican American) style detailing, numerous gold-plated components, a Dorne wreath ornament, a sunken cross and Pope Francis’ signature on the tank.

The Harley Davidson was unveiled to the public in Würzburg on 29 June 2019 before being accompanied by the Jesus Bikers to the Vatican, via Assisi, where the ‘Pope Bike’ was handed over to the Vatican at a ceremony with His Holiness in St Peter’s Square on 7 July.

Holy bikes

Pope Harley
Holy Softail

The holy Harley is the latest in a short succession of holy motorcycles and cars donated to the Papacy and sold on for charity.

In 2014, a Harley-Davidson owned by the previous Pope sold at a Paris auction for the “bargain” price of $67,700.

The Harley Heritage Softail was one of two Harleys gifted to Pope Benedict XVI to celebrate Harley-Davidson’s 110th anniversary in 2013.

When he resigned, Pope Benedict was replaced by Pope Francis who decided to sell the bikes for homeless charities in Rome.

Pope Francis with the Harley Dyna expensive motorcycle holy
Pope Francis with the Harley Dyna

The first bike, a Dyna Super Glide, sold for $364,476, while a Harley leather jacket also sold for an astounding $86,829.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Holy Harley auctioned for charity

A Harley-Davidson signed by Pope Francis is the holy highlight of the Bonham’s Autumn Stafford sale in the UK on 19-20 October 2019.

The 2016 Custom Cycle “White Unique” is estimated to fetch up to $A180,000 when it is offered for sale on 20 October, 2019, with all proceeds to be donated to charity.

White Unique was created at the suggestion of Dr Thomas Draxler, founder of the Jesus Bikers group in Austria, as a fundraising vehicle, to be donated to the Pontifical Mission Societies (Missio), the official support for Catholic overseas missions.

Pope with holy Harley custom for auction
White Unique

Bavarian-based Harley Davidson dealer, Würzburg Village, supplied the Softail and collaborated with the Jesus Bikers on its customisation.

As the name suggests, the machine is finished in pearlescent white, with Chicano (Mexican American) style detailing, numerous gold-plated components, a Dorne wreath ornament, a sunken cross and Pope Francis’ signature on the tank.

The Harley Davidson was unveiled to the public in Würzburg on 29 June 2019 before being accompanied by the Jesus Bikers to the Vatican, via Assisi, where the ‘Pope Bike’ was handed over to the Vatican at a ceremony with His Holiness in St Peter’s Square on 7 July.

Holy bikes

Pope Harley
Holy Softail

The holy Harley is the latest in a short succession of holy motorcycles and cars donated to the Papacy and sold on for charity.

In 2014, a Harley-Davidson owned by the previous Pope sold at a Paris auction for the “bargain” price of $67,700.

The Harley Heritage Softail was one of two Harleys gifted to Pope Benedict XVI to celebrate Harley-Davidson’s 110th anniversary in 2013.

When he resigned, Pope Benedict was replaced by Pope Francis who decided to sell the bikes for homeless charities in Rome.

Pope Francis with the Harley Dyna expensive motorcycle holy
Pope Francis with the Harley Dyna

The first bike, a Dyna Super Glide, sold for $364,476, while a Harley leather jacket also sold for an astounding $86,829.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

On Any Sunday director bikes on sale

Motorcycles belonging to the late Bruce Brown, director of perhaps the greatest motorcycle film of all time, On Any Sunday, will go on sale next month.

Bruce died of natural causes, aged 80, died in December 2017, but his legend lives on in his Academy Award nominated 1971 film.

Now you can own a piece of Bruce Brown history with the sale of his  1967 Triumph T20 Mountain Cub and a 1970 Husqvarna 250 Cross.

They go up for auction at the Bonham’s sale at the Barber Motorsports Museum in Alabama on 5 October 2019.

Brown’s Triumph was his first real motorcycle after he traded in his Honda step-through scooter to help with the purchase.

Bruce Brown director of On Any Sunday
Brown’s 1976 Triumph T20 Mountain Cub

It opened the door to a friendship with Hollywood actor Steve McQueen, which led to the making of On Any Sunday. It’s in original, unrestored condition, with matching numbers and low mileage.

Brown’s Husky was given to him by Edison Dye, the then exclusive US importer of Husqvarna.

In a now famous gesture of brilliant product placement, Dye donated several 250 Cross models for the film.

In a letter dated 21 April 1970 from Dye to Brown, it says that this bike is “for your use of your filming of your new motorcycle movie”.

Film favourite

The director filmed many documentaries, but his iconic bike film kickstarted millions of riders in the ‘70s, including this scribe.

It is still a favourite for its coverage of contemporary flat track racing, desert racing and the playful final dune scenes with McQueen.

Bruce Brown On Any Sunday
Bruce (right) with cast and crew including Steve McQueen (second left) on  Huskies

The final scene was filmed at sunset at the Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton.

“I figured there would be no way to get approval to film on the Marine base,” Bruce said.

“Steve McQueen said he’d see what he could find out. The next day he called and was told to contact some General and the next thing you know we are shooting the beach sequences. It was pretty amazing the doors he was able to open.”

Director gets funding

McQueen gave the director more than $300,00o to film the documentary after receiving a “cold call pitch” from the filmmaker.

Brown is also well known as the director of 1966 surfing documentary Endless Summer.

After On Any Sunday, Bruce went into semi-retirement, restoring and racing cars, playing the stock market, and deep-sea fishing.

In 1992, he returned with a lacklustre Endless Summer II.

Brown was born in 1937 in San Francisco and at the age of 10 his family moved to Long Beach where he developed an interest in surfing.

Bruce caught the riding bug in the early 1960s after visiting Japan.

“I remember going to Ascot Park and watching the dirt track races,” Brown says on his website.

“I met a few of the racers and was struck by how approachable and how nice most of these guys were. It wasn’t at all like the image a lot of people had about motorcycle riders in those days. I just thought it would be neat to do a movie about motorcycle racing and the people involved.”

Bruce’s son, Dana, has carried on the documentary tradition, with his 2003 surfing documentary Step Into Liquid, his 2005 Baja 1000 documentary Dust to Glory and his 2014 On Any Sunday sequel.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Morbidellil motorcycle collection for sale

A collection of motorcycles gathered over 40 years by motorcycle manufacturer and Grand Prix boss Giancarlo Morbidelli is being offered for sale at auction.

The annual Bonhams Autumn Stafford Sale on 18-20 October 2019 will be the largest single private collection of motorcycles to be offered by Bonhams to date.The Morbidelli Collection from Pesaro, Italy, has more than 300 motorcycles.

“He spent day and night in the museum,” says his son Guianni. “He had no other life.”

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale
Giancarlo Morbidelli and a Morbidelli V8

Giancarlo’s collection includes international brands such as Harley-Davidson, Honda and Benelli ranging from immaculate restorations to prototypes and barn finds.

They represent the passion of the farmer’s son and former woodworking machinist who, while building up a successful engineering firm as his day job, spent his spare time on tuning, racing and later building his own motorcycles. 

Highlights

Two examples from the Morbidelli Grand Prix racing motorcycle collection, largely designed and built by Giancarlo, were fabricated by a small, dedicated team in a corner of the Morbidelli woodworking factory. 

These proved to be ‘giant killers’ seeing off international corporations to claim the 125cc Grand Prix World Championship in three consecutive years: 1975, ‘76 and ‘77, as well as winning the 250cc world title in 1977. 

“He was a genius with bikes,” says Gianni.

“He did everything by himself, working in a very small room. 

“Forty years ago, he laid the foundation of this incredible museum, spending a lot of effort, time, energy and money. 

“One part of the museum is dedicated to the period between the end of the 1960s to the 1980s when he built racing motorcycles. It’s our family heritage, a part of our life, but we thought it would be correct to include in the sale two Morbidelli motorcycles that my father built.”

The 1974 Morbidelli 125cc Grand Prix motorcycle is estimated to fetch up to £120,000 ($A214,500).

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale
1974 Morbidelli 125

It was raced by the great Angel Nieto to second place in that year’s Spanish and German Grand Prix.

A 250cc machine designed for 15-time Grand Prix world champion Giacomo Agostini, who rode for the team during its golden period in 1976, and came second at Misano is estimated to fetch up £100,000 ($A179,000).

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale
Agostini’s 1976 Moridelli 250

However, the Morbidelli family will retain ownership of the majority of the Morbidelli Grand Prix motorcycles, including the world championship winning 125cc and 250cc examples, raced respectively by Paoli Pileri, Pierpaolo Bianchi and Lego Mario.

Benelli features

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale
1942 Benelli 250 GP supercharged

Not surprisingly, the Morbidelli Museum collection in the sale features a strong showing of Benelli motorcycles which were also a great passion of Giancarlo, coming from Pesaro, where this great historic brand was also founded.  

One of the most interesting examples of the marque on offer is the 1942 250cc supercharged 4-cylinder example that could fetch more than £600,000 ($A1m).

This racing machine never actually raced. It was built just in time for motorcycle racing to be stopped due to the war, while supercharging was banned by the FIM in post-war years.

Giancarlo had a personal relationship and friendship with the Benelli family and so was able to procure the original parts which he rebuilt into a fully-functioning motorcycle.

Other Benellis to be offered include:Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale

  • 1950 Benelli 250cc Grand Prix racing motorcycle – the world championship motorcycle ridden to victory by Dario Ambrosini. Estimate £120,000 – 180,000.
  • 1934 Benelli 175cc Bialbero – believed raced by Dorino Serafini, one of only three in the world. Estimate £40,000 – 60,000.
  • 1964 Benelli 250 Grand Prix racing motorcycle, ridden and signed by two-time world champion Tarquino Provini. Estimate £80,000 – 120,000.

Ducati jewel

Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale
1964 Ducati 125cc

Another jewel of the Morbidelli Collection is the 1964 Ducati 125cc 4-cylinder Grand Prix racing motorcycle, (estimate £400,000 – 600,000), another GP racing machine which never raced. Created by Fabio Taglioni, Ducati’s chief engineer, this motorcycle disappeared for some years before its engine was found in Russia while its chassis reappeared in Yugoslavia, now Croatia. With the two essential components reunited, Giancarlo rebuilt the mythical motorcycle.

Alongside the pristine restorations, there are several unfinished projects in the sale, offering the opportunity to restore these machines as Giancarlo was hoping to.

The collection also comprises motorcycling memorabilia including Giancarlo’s own reference library, original drawings, trophies, signage and other artefacts, giving a complete picture of the museum and the motorcycling world.  Nieto Morbidelli collection for sale

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

TV and stunt bikes sell at record auction

The Brough Superior outfit used in the hit British comedy TV shows George and Mildred and Dad’s Army has sold at a record auction along with a bike owned by stunt rider Bud Ekins who did the famous fence jump in The Great Escape.

Proving its star power, the 1933 Brough Superior 1096cc 11-50hp and Cruiser Sidecar sold for £71,300 ($130,675) in the Bonhams annual Spring Stafford Sale at the International Classic MotorCycle Show in Stafford over the weekend.

Record auction

Bud Ekins Great Escape Steve McQuun desert sled triumph motorcycles TR6 record auction
Bud’s Triumph Trophy

Yet it was not the biggest seller at the record auction where three motorcycles set new world record auction prices.

The 1962 Triumph 649cc TR6SS ridden by Ekins sold to an American bidder for a world record auction price of £97,750 (almost $A180,000)  – over three times its top estimate.

A rare 1925 Coventry Eagle 981cc Flying-8 set a new auction record for the marque with £218,500 (about $A400,000).

A third world record was set for a 1935 Vincent-HRD 498cc Series-A Comet which sold for £97,750 (almost $A180,000).

Dad’s Army

The Brough outfit was used in 1972 in season five, episode 12 of Dad’s Army titled “Round and Round went the Great Big Wheel”.

Other bikes used in the series from 1970-77 include a Matchless G3L in the same episode as above and a BSA M21 in season seven.

George & Mildred

When the 1933 Brough Superior outfit was finished fighting off Mr Hitler’s invading forces, the bike was then featured heavily in George & Mildred (1976-79).

Its biggest starring role was in the opening credits.

Before the Brough wound up on the “idiot box”, it started life as a works entry for the formidable ISDT (International Six Days Trial) in 1934, winning a coveted gold medal.

It is one of only 308 built and has been owned by a family for more than 50 years.

Bud Ekins Trophy

Ekins rode the Triumph 649cc TR6SS Trophy to a gold medal in the 1962 International Six Day Trials (ISDT) in Europe.

The Trophy was sold along with the actual trophy he won for his individual class win.

Bud Ekins Great Escape Steve McQuun desert sled triumph motorcycles TR6 record auction
Bud’s trophy

The off-road racer, bike restorer and stunt rider was a close friend and riding partner of actor Steve McQueen as well as a good friend of actors Clint Eastwood and Paul Newman.

Bud Ekins Great Escape Steve McQuun desert sled triumph motorcycles TR6 record auction
Bud and Steve

He famously doubled for Steve in the jump stunt in The Great Escape on a Triumph TR6 instead of a German BMW.

Click here to see a home movie of behind-the-scenes filming.

The movie was being shot in Germany in 1962 and Bud thought it would be a good idea to combine his film work with participation in that year’s ISDT, held at Garmisch Partenkirchen.

Triumph agreed to supply a suitable factory-prepared machine, which was flown to Germany and registered there. Bud Ekins Great Escape Steve McQuun desert sled triumph motorcycles TR6 record auction

After the event, in which Bud not only gained a Gold Medal but also won the Unlimited Capacity Class, the Triumph was flown back to his home in California where it was registered as ‘CAL 142080’.

Trophy history

Triumph adopted the Trophy model name on their off-road 500cc TR5 and 650cc TR6 twins following success in the ISDT in the late 1940s.

For 1962, the final year of the traditional ‘pre-unit’ Triumph twins, the Trophy was designated ‘TR6SS’ which is one of the rarest of all post-WW2 Triumphs, being produced for the ’62 season only.

It was powered by a 34-46hp an air-cooled OHV parallel twin with a single Amal carburettor, a 4-speed transmission, twin rear shock absorbers and telescopic forks, weighing 166kg dry.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Dad’s Army, George & Mildred bike for auction

You stupid boy, get on your bike and check out this Brough Superior outfit used in the hit comedy TV shows Dad’s Army and George and Mildred.

The 1933 Brough Superior 1096cc 11-50hp and Cruiser Sidecar is heading to the Bonhams annual Spring Stafford Sale at the International Classic MotorCycle Show in Stafford on 27-28 April 2019.

The TV star outfit is expected to fetch up to £80,000 (about $A150,000).

Dad’s Army

It was used in 1972 in season five, episode 12 of Dad’s Army titled “Round and Round went the Great Big Wheel”.

Other bikes used in the series from 1970-77 include a Matchless G3L in the same episode as above and a BSA M21 in season seven.

George & Mildred

When the 1933 Brough Superior outfit was finished fighting off Mr Hitler’s invading forces, the bike was then featured heavily in George & Mildred (1976-79).

Its biggest starring role was in the opening credits.

We won’t tell you the punchline to the opening scene.

Suffice to say Mildred is once again less than impressed by George!

Before the Brough wound up on the “idiot box”, it started life as a works entry for the formidable ISDT (International Six Days Trial) in 1934, winning a coveted gold medal.

It is one of only 308 built and has been owned by a family for more than 50 years.

Superior Brough

However, it will not expected to be the superior bike at the auction.

That honour is expected to go to a 1926 Brough Superior 986cc SS100 Alpine Grand Sports estimated to fetch up to £180,000 ($A338,000).Brough Superior Dad’s Army, George & Mildred bike for auction

It includes several modifications to improve reliability and practicality, including an anti-theft switch and an electrical generator concealed behind the gearbox.

The high-quality sporting motorcycles were built in Nottingham by George Brough from 1921.

Every Brough Superior was essentially a bespoke motorcycle, built to the customer’s individual requirements and famously earning the British company the nickname ‘The Rolls-Royce of Motorcycles’.

A succession of famous customers rode Broughs, including T. E. Lawrence – better known as Lawrence of Arabia.

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com

Steve McQueen Speed Twin sets record

Steve McQueen continues to set motorcycle records 38 years after his death with his Triumph Speed Twin fetching the highest price ever paid for that model at auction.

The 1938 Triumph 5T Speed Twin 500 was estimated to fetch up to $US65,000 (about $A91,000), but sold at the Bonham’s annual Las Vegas Motorcycle Auction for $175,500 ($A245,000), almost three times as much.

When the hammer fell and the King of Cool’s ride set a new world auction record, the audience erupted in cheers and applause.

Steve McQueen 1938 Triumph Speed Twin

Triumph and McQueen

The Hollywood star had a long association with Triumph having ridden a TR6 in The Great Escape and the 1964 International Six Day Trial, representing the USA.

His Speed Twin was restored by friend and fellow ISDT team member Bud Ekins in the mid to late 1970s.

It’s not the most expensive motorcycle sold at auction. That honour also once belonged to a Steve McQueen bike.

His 1915 Cyclone sold at a 2015 Las Vegas Mecum auction for almost $A1 million.

Steve McQueen's Cyclone -
Steve McQueen’s Cyclone

However, that record was beaten on Australia Day 2018 when a 1951 Vincent Black Lightning on which Jack Ehret set an Australian speed record was bought at the Bonham’s annual Las Vegas motorcycle auction for a record $US929,000 ($A1,155,000, €748,500) by an unknown collector who is returning the bike to Australia.

Jack Ehret's Vincent Black Lightning collection valuable - speed twin
Jack Ehret’s Vincent Black Lightning

Bonham’s highlights

Another highlight of this year’s Bonham’s Las Vegas Motorcycle Auction was a 1993 Ducati Supermono, one of just 67 made.

It was tipped to fetch up to $125,000 (about $A177,000), but was bought fora bargain $115,000 ($A160,000).

Ducati Supermono speed twin

Another highlight that turned out to sell for a bargain price was a 1916 Harley-Davidson Model F that sat untouched for many decades and still includes a period front tyre.

It was parked indoors many years ago in indoor storage and was recently discovered by American TV car restorer Wayne Carini, host of the Chasing Classic Cars TV series which featured the Harley in one episode.

The Harley was expected to fetch bids up to $100,000 (about $A140,000), but went for just $34,500 ($A48,000).

Harley-Davidson Model F speed twin

Meanwhile, a 1974 Munch Mammoth TTS, known as the world’s first superbike, made $112,000 ($A156,000).

Source: MotorbikeWriter.com