The entry for Bonhams’ second annual sale of collectors’ motorcycles on 19th June at its Midlands base at Kidlington, Oxfordshire – held in conjunction with the VMCC’s Banbury Run – is headlined by two competition machines from different eras: the ex-Roy Peplow 1966 ISDT works Triumph Tiger 100 and the ex-Tommy Meeten circa 1927 Francis-Barnett.
A works rider for the Triumph factory, Roy Peplow was a member of Britain’s Trophy team in the ’66 International Six Days Trial, held that year in Sweden. Peplow won a Gold Medal, helping the British team to finish second overall behind East Germany.
After the event the Triumph was sold to another team member, Ken Heanes, the Hampshire-based rider and motorcycle dealer who would go on to manage Britain’s ISDT team in the 1970s following his retirement from the sport (estimate £10,000 – 15,000).
In the mid-1920s Tommy Meeten’s name was invariably linked with that of Francis-Barnett, for whom he set a number of world records at Brooklands riding one of its 172cc Villiers-engined two-strokes.
The machine on offer dates from that period and has Meeten’s special expansion chamber exhausts, presaging post-war developments in this area. Proprietor of Meeten’s Motor Mecca on the Kingston bypass and later co-founder of The British Two-Stroke Club, Meeten kept the 172cc Villiers Brooklands-engined racer until the dealership’s closure when it passed to the current vendor’s father (estimate £3,000 – 5,000).
Consignments continuing the competition theme include two more racing motorcycles from the pre-war era: the 1927 AJS 350cc ‘Big Port’, previously part of the Brian Verrall Collection (estimate £10,000 – 14,000) and the fully restored 1938 Moto Guzzi 500cc Condor production racer, a limited-edition model of which only 68 were made (estimate £33,000 – 39,000).
No sale associated with the Banbury Run would be complete without its share of Veteran and Vintage machines, and notable examples already consigned include the 1903 Beeston-built Humber 2¾hp (estimate £12,000 – 15,000) and 1926 Wooler Standard Touring Model (estimate £10,000 – 15,000).
Notable post-war motorcycles in the sale include the 1967 Velocette Thruxton, a two-owner example with only 12,000-or-so miles recorded (estimate £8,000 – 12,000) and the 1961 BSA Super Rocket (estimate £4,000 – 5,000).
Owned from new by Richard O’Brien, writer and star of the cult musical ‘The Rocky Horror Show’ and presenter of television’s ‘The Crystal Maze’, the 2001 Honda CB50 Dream is to be sold charitably on behalf of The Royal Children’s Hospital, Manchester (estimate £2,000 – £2,500).
The sale of the Honda will be filmed for inclusion in BBC TWO’s ‘Cash in the Celebrity Attic’, for a new series to be shown later this year. So far, celebrity guests have raised nearly £110,000 for charities all over the UK.
Ben Walker, Head of Bonhams Collectors’ Motorcycle Department, commented: "The success of last year’s sale clearly demonstrated this event’s potential and it is with great pleasure that I look forward to our second, held again in conjunction with the VMCC’s Banbury Run. There are some wonderful machines already consigned, catering for every pocket and collecting taste, and we look forward to seeing another packed saleroom!"