▲ The T20 Triumph Tiger Cub. We think it's still one of the coolest classic motorcycles you can buy. True, they need a fair amount of fettling to keep in tip-top condition. And true, there are some very dodgy lash-ups asking totally unrealistic money. But this 1961 example is (or was) a show winner and has even graced the pages of Classic Bike. The numbers match. It's in running order. Same owner since 1968. Current V5C and "certificate of authenticity". And 200 cubic centimetres of one of the cutest (yes, we said "cutest") British singles ever built. This bike is set to be auctioned by H&H Auctions on 16th September 2020 in a live online sale, and the estimate is £2,500 - £3,500. Sounds too low to us. But the classic market is cooling, except perhaps for the blue chip stuff. So we'll be watching carefully. If you haven't owned/ridden a Tiger Cub and still enjoy the thrill of the road (yes, we actually said that too), give this some consideration. Cubs are a treat. Would we lie?


September 2020  Classic bike news

Motorcycle news | Biking headlines | Latest motor bike stories | Press


Motorcycle news


2021 Triumph Trident on the way

How to write a great motorcycle for sale advert

100 years of Alvis exhibition

Allan Jefferies BMW prize draw offer

Kickback Show: entries sought

Calling all coffin dodgers...

One liners - Vic Eastwood

Coventry-Eagle Flying-8 "tin" sign

Catalytic converter thefts on the rise

Poet's Corner: 1959

One liners

Incoming: nuclear hype from BMW!!

Harrison OK-Supreme to auction

2019 Brighton Speed Trials date

February 2019 Classic Bike News

H&H upcoming auctions reminder

One liners

Peter Halsten Thorkelson: 1942 - 2019

Charterhouse February 2019 results

59 Club May ride-outs to St Paul's

Nippy Normans "handy" airline tool

One liners

New classic car metal garage signs

2019 Kickback Show seeks sponsors

Bauer print sales take another dive

Australian cops speed camera poser

One liners

Henry Cole wants your shed

London Classic Car Show 2019

Christopher Chope's FGM backlash

Albert Finney: 1936 - 2019

International Motobécane gathering

One liners

Charterhouse Auctions reminder

Bud Ekins' Husqvarna MX360 Viking

2019 Bristol Classic Show postponed


Henry Cole's Motorbike Show returns

Oxford Bradwell wax cotton jacket

Norton Commando Winter Raffle

2019 Triumph Scrambler 1200 details

80 years of AMC with Colin Seeley

One liners

A blue plaque for Rex McCandless

"Barn find" RE Constellation to sell

Kawasaki Zed series restoration manual

Bonhams Stafford Sale hits £3 million

Weise®  Boston Jeans tried & tested

One liners

Star attractions at Barber Sale

Andy Tiernan 2019 charity calendar

Zhongneng buys Moto Morini

Bonhams Autumn Stafford preview

Charles Geoffrey Hayes: 1942 - 2018

Mark Wilsmore's bikes to auction

2019 Street Twin & Scrambler boost

Two Wheeled Tuesdays invitation

Bonhams Alexandra Palace Sept Sale

NextBase 312GW dashcam tested

Charles Nicholas Hodges

Suzuki Motorcycles from Veloce

2019 BMW R1250GS & R1250RT
Dudley Sutton: 1933 - 2018 

Oxford Products Kickback Shirt

One liners

Moto Guzzi V9 Bobber Sport unveiled

Burton Leon Reynolds: 1936 - 2018

Comet Classics Open Day

H&H Auctions seeking consignments

One liners

Motus Motorcycles is bust


June 2018 Classic Bike News

One liners

Trump & Harley-Davidson toe to toe

"Governator's" Harley-Davidson sold

Car Builder Solutions recommended

Dirtquake VII 2018 at Arena Essex
One liners
Mecum Auctions at Monterey 2018
H&H NMM auction shapes up further
Chris Chope gets 'em in a twist
Daniel David Kirwan: 1950 - 2018
Reg Allen Motorcycles is closing
One liners
World Motorcycle Rally 2018
Glynn Edwards: 1931 - 2018
Den Hartogh Museum Sale
Grip-Tite Sockets, tried & tested
Donald Trump's US trade war starts


May 2018 Classic Bike News

The Daily Not News

IOM jaywalker in the hoosegow

Rare Norton Hi-Rider to auction

Clint Walker: 1927 - 2018

Ducati Museum Hailwood exhibition

Tougher protection for cops mooted

One liners

New London-Brighton Run route

April 2018 Classic Bike News

Bonhams Spring Stafford results

Royal Enfield Interceptor NMM raffle

60th International Motor Scooter Rally

New Honda "Monkey Bike" for 2018

Carole Nash's dangerous roads

An Austin Anthology from Veloce

Bonhams Stafford Sale reminder

One Liners

Bradford Dillman: 1930 - 2018

Stolen Vincent Comet & BSA Bantam
Spirit of '59 Triumph Bonnevilles
We've been adrift, but we're back in port

Autonomous Tesla claims a cyclist

Motor insurance premiums fall

March 2018 Classic Bike News

Watsonian's GP700 & Indian Chief

Bonhams Stafford Sale April 2018

One liners

We Ride London new demo date

Dee Atkinson & Harrison March Sale

Bull-it Men's SR6 Cargo trousers

Franklin's Indians: Veloce Reprint

One Liners

Kenneth Arthur Dodd: 1927 - 2018

Carole Nash Google Petition

New Musical Express is out of print

1954 500cc Triumph-Matchless chop

1,800 bike collection to be auctioned

Art Exhibition at Sammy Miller's

2018 Cardiff Classic Motorcycle Show

John Lennon's monkey bike: £57,500

One liners

This day in history

February 2018 Classic Bike News

Foscam Wireless Camera system

Pioneer Run eBook: now £2.99

Oxford Clamp On brake lever clip

One liners

2018 Curtiss Warhawk unveiled

Here's the latest bike scam attempt

George Beale appointed H&H director

Next Kickback Show 7-8th April 2018

"Alley Rat" - 2018 UK BOTK winner

One liners

Defeat the online scammers with Skype

Triumph Hurricane scammer alert

CCM Spitfire-based Bobber for 2018

Cafe Racer Dreams: 8 bikes stolen

Coys' Feb 2018 London Excel Auction

Thieves ransom Triumph Thunderbird

Harley-Davidson recalls 251,000 bikes

"Police biker" banker convicted

Bringsty Grand Prix Revival 2018

Two new Weise wax cotton jackets

Murderous solicitor is still on the books

£7k - £10k Triumph 'X-75 Hurricane'

Retro wireless GPS speedometer

"Anvil Motociclette...

2018 Triumph Speed Triples launched

Royal Enfield Flying Flea stolen

Brühl Twin Turbine Motorcycle Dryer

January 2018 Classic Bike News

Laser Power Bar Extension Wrench

One liners

Harley-Davidson quits Kansas City

Online traffic accident reporting plan

Silverstone Auctions February 2018

12th Annual Dania Beach Show

Black Lightning sells for $929,000

Online motorcycle scammer alert

One liners

AJS Tempest Scrambler for 2018

Charterhouse's February 2018 sale

Can anyone add info on this rider?

HJC FG-70s Aries Yellow helmet

One liners

Peter Wyngarde: 1927 (ish) - 2018

Death Machines of London - Airforce

Lancaster Insurance; reality check

One liners

"Fast" Eddie Clarke: 1950 - 2018

Bonhams' Las Vegas Sale reminder

Ban on credit/bank card charges

December 2017 Classic Bike News

Information on this picture wanted

Levis Motorcycles set for comeback?

One Liners

Oops, we screwed up [again - Ed]

H&H December 2017 sale at the NMM

Immortal Austin Seven from Veloce

Triumph T140V for sale: 237km

Irresponsible journalism from MCN?
Hagon Triumph Bobber mono-shock
Bruce Alan Brown: 1937 - 2017

MCN closes its biker forum

Arm rural UK coppers suggestion

Bought a Sump T-shirt? Check your email...

Falling bike sales, 11 straight months

Triumph Birmingham is set to close

New electric black taxi breaks cover

Semi naked girl straddles an Indian!!

November 2017 Classic Bike News

Riding Japan; new touring website

British motor racing anniversary day

Triumph T140 restoration guide

Ratchet handle taps & dies - Chronos

White Helmet Triumphs reach £12K

H&H's first timed automobilia auction

Goldtop £50 off gloves—limited offer

London pillion rider ban idea

Ford Design in the UK - Veloce

Thruxton Track Racer Kit offer

Want to post a comment on Sump?

New Davida "Koura" full face helmet

One liners

NMM BSA Gold Star winner details

Norton 650 twin scrambler planned

RE travel book: Hit the Road, Jac!

Stoneleigh Kickback Show April 2017

Brough Superior Pendine racer

One liners

H-D Battle of the Kings 2017 winner

New Royal Enfield 650 twins launched

NMM's 2018 Speedmaster prize

Meriden Off Road Tiger Cubs

One liners

Andy Tiernan's 2018 calendar

Scrappage scheme classic car poser

Norton launches the California

Scooter gangs face new response

One liners

September 2017 Classic Bike News

Sump news archive



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Ace Classics (London) 2021 calendar now available: ten quid

Bennetts Insurance acquisition by Ardonagh fails. CMA forces reversal

TT M/Cs (Glasgow) changes name (trademark woes). Now CA Motorcycles

HM Gov duplicate logbook service; delivery cut from 6 weeks to 5 days

48th Tokyo Motorcycle Show (March 2021) cancelled—Coronavirus fears

Polaris signs a 10 year deal with Zero to develop electric powersport bikes


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2021 Triumph Trident moves closer


Story snapshot:

New official images of the new triple have been revealed

But no confirmed details have been forthcoming


There's plenty of ongoing speculation from the usual online motorcycle rags. But the fact is, there isn't any certainty about the new 2021 Triumph Trident which is, apparently, on the way. Yes, we can clearly see some of the components (brake calipers, forks. etc). But pre-production bikes often change specification before full production happens. So we'll just wait and see what's what.


Last month (August) we ran a piece on this bike (that Triumph's been busy "teasing"), but there's nothing else to add to that story—except that new official factory images have been released (see immediately above).


But the bike has at least been photographed on the move, so you can read what you will into that. Meanwhile, see the link below for the August story.


2021 Triumph Trident [still] on the way


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Funny or ironic how the once iconic Triumph 3 cylinder Trident was copied but not equalled by Yamaha with the very good but not great XS750 and XS850 from Japan. How the tables are turned now as an Asian manufacturer Triumph are trying to match the excellent MT09, the revised version of which is lighter and better than the target Triumph might have been aiming for. Being a small fish in a big pond is a different game, this sink or swim new Trident bike could be a real winner or a damp squib if they miss the mark.

—Phil Cowley

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New parent for sorrymate.com [bike accident compensation firm]

Post furlough funding [new industry job support scheme; Covid-19]

Norton settlement still vague


New report on Norton debt
30 years on: The story behind Triumph's rebirth
Colour updates for 2021 Kawasaki Z900, Vulcan S and Ninja 1000SX


Bringing back the 2-stroke: Interview with Langen Motorcycles founder

Everything you need to know about m/c insurance but were afraid to ask


Harley-Davidson Sportster line-up set to be axed from European range
Harley-Davidson exits India amid warning ‘Rewire’ rising restructuring costs

Hurry! Triumph is offering a massive deal on the Speed Triple RS and S


Harley-Davidson closes up shop in India, kills Sportster in Europe

Terminally ill 83-year-old Anne Turner gets her wish to ride a Harley


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WW2 era Vincent-HRD Comet to sell


Story snapshot:

1939 499cc Vincent-HRD Comet with some interesting history

£40k - £50k is the estimate


This machine is being marketed as: "The motorbike that helped to speed Britain's war effort..." which, okay, could be said about many other motorcycles circa 1939 - 1945. But if you want to make the punters sit up and pay attention, you've got to say something, and this piece of auctioneer hype does the job.


The bike is a 1939 499cc Vincent-HRD Series A Comet. Its wartime credentials harken back to its first owner, a certain Mr Peter Falconer. Falconer was a Gloucestershire based architect who was commissioned by the British government to convert mills into munitions factories. And it was on this steed that he zipped around the country identifying suitable buildings and whatnot, and probably having plenty of fun on the open road. That's him in the images immediately below (note the period blackout mask on the picture to the right—and note the lack of protective headgear, if that matters to you).




Peter Falconer, who died in 2003 aged 86, enjoyed a varied architectural practice. He designed breweries and distilleries, and he was involved in the remodelling of Highgrove House for the Prince of Wales.


He kept the bike until 1947 when it was sold—possibly to an apprentice at the Vincent factory in Stevenage, Herts. But that part of its history is vague. Certainly the bike was back at the factory at around that time when it was fitted with a dual seat and alloy mudguards.



The current owner is Andrew Howard whose father, Mike, restored the bike some years ago. It was in a poor condition when purchased, and it was a decade in the making (or re-making) after which father and son enjoyed an Isle of Man jaunt aboard this machine and another classic. That was in 2013. And we should mention here that Vincent specialist Bob Dun handled the motor work.


The bike is coming up for sale at the H&H Sale on Saturday 14th November 2020 at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull. Looks like that's a "live" sale, but we think it might become online only. Best check with H&H nearer the date and see what's happening, coronavirus-wise.


The estimate is £40,000 - £50,000. A V5C is present, plus an old RF60 continuation buff log book. Dual alloy front brakes are fitted. There's a comprehensive history file. And the bike is said to be in good running order.


Nice rounded story?


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Andy Tiernan 2021 calendar


Story snapshot:

Your support for the East Anglian Air Ambulance is sought

Mike Harbar is once again the artist


Artist Mike Harbar has improved a lot since last year's Andy Tiernan Calendar. That's immediately obvious when you check the six sketches he's created for 2021, and it's clear that only someone with an intimate and sensitive knowledge of motorcycles could have created these works of art.


The six bikes are: a BSA Rocket Three, a Norton Classic Rotary, a Matchless G80, a Suzuki RE5, a Honda 750-4, and a Triumph T160 Trident. And if you can count you'll notice that there are six bikes, but twelve month in the year. So you can figure out for yourself how the calendar pages might be arranged.


As ever, the proceeds from the sale of the calendars go to the East Anglian Air Ambulance. Last year, that raised a very creditable and airworthy £2,022.


Here are the postage details:


United Kingdom - 1 calendar including 2nd class postage is £11.00

European Union - 1 calendar including European postage is £17.00

Rest of the World -1 calendar including overseas postage is £20.00


Note that the calendars are being printed imminently, so you can buy now and expect delivery as soon as they leave the press. Andy Tiernan, who trades from Framlingham, Suffolk (and who's been buying and selling classic bikes since forever) won't let you down.


Andy Buys Bikes Calendar Page


Mike Harbar Classic Artist


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The Coronavirus Act: Call to Action


Story snapshot:

Important government vote coming up

You're encouraged to do what you can to influence it...


Big Brother Watch (BBW) has contacted us regarding an emergency call to action with reference to a UK parliamentary vote that will happen on Wednesday 30th September 2020. The subject/concern is The Coronavirus Act that will give the government swingeing new powers that will stay active for at least the next six months—and possibly well beyond. The more specific bone of contention is Schedule 21 which contains legal provisions on powers intended to deal with potential infectious persons. Note the word "potential". There's some worrying stuff here that bears closer scrutiny.


As we've mentioned before on Sump, we've got mixed feeling regarding BBW, but we're certainly not ignoring them or their warnings. You can decide for yourself how serious this issue is by reading the copy below and checking out the YouTube Coronavirus Act link.



Meanwhile, here's a draft letter (courtesy of BBW) for you to cut and paste and forward to your MP if you feel so inclined. Send it or don't send it. But at the very least we suggest you read it.


Subject: Repeal Schedule 21 in the Coronavirus Act on 30th September 2020

Dear [MP],

I am writing to express my concern about the Coronavirus Act renewal motion. In particular, I urge you to support the amendment to repeal Schedule 21 on Wednesday 30th September, to protect rights and justice in the UK.

The Coronavirus Act represents the biggest expansion of executive power in a generation. Some of the powers in the Act are extreme, unexplained and simply unjustified — but, nodded through on the premise of urgency, the Act suffered from a lack of parliamentary scrutiny. It is vital that this motion to review the Act is not a rubber-stamping exercise but a genuine review and repeal of the Act’s unnecessary and dangerous powers. The most dangerous and excessive of these powers in Schedule 21 of the Act.

Schedule 21 contains some of the most extreme detention powers in modern British legal history. It gives unprecedented, almost arbitrary powers to the police, immigration officers and public health officials to detain “potentially infectious” members of the public, including children, potentially indefinitely and in unspecified locations. In a pandemic, that could mean anyone.

Schedule 21 detention powers have been used for 121 prosecutions — every single one of which was found unlawful by the CPS on review. This 100% unlawful prosecution rate, which has continued over six months, is unprecedented and unacceptable. Big Brother Watch has found cases of innocent and healthy individuals not only being arrested and fined but even held in police cells unlawfully under these draconian powers.

Renewing Schedule 21 in the Coronavirus Act would be dangerous and indefensible. Significant powers in the Health and Social Care Act 2008 already allow for the forced detention and testing of potentially infectious people with the authorisation of a magistrate, which is a vital safeguard. Furthermore, the Health Protection (Coronavirus, International Travel) Regulations 2020 require individuals returning from countries on the quarantine list to self-isolate and give police the power to forcibly return an individual to an isolation place.

Will you support an amendment to the Coronavirus Act renewal motion to repeal Schedule 21?

Yours sincerely,



Message ends.


YouTube Coronavirus Act video

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October 2020 Stafford cancelled


Story snapshot:

This year's event is toast

But the April 2021 show remains on the calendar


It was scheduled for 10th & 11th October 2020, but the recent tightening of coronavirus restrictions ("Rule of Six") has made the event impractical.


So it's cancelled.


There's not much else to say about it, except that the organiser (Mortons Media Group) is nevertheless still planning to push ahead with the April 2021 show.


Might happen, of course. But we're simply not looking that far ahead. Meanwhile there's no information regarding refunds of advanced tickets or booked trade space. So you'll have to make your own enquiries.


FOOTNOTE:  We've just been notified that the Capesthorne Hall show scheduled for Sunday 27th September 2020 has also been cancelled. The organiser is: www.classicshows.org


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Cancelling Stafford is no great loss to the bike world. The event has been steadily going downhill for years with cheap unrelated tat replacing quality classic parts. I've already lost money on this year's event (bed & breakfast booking), and I'm not about to do it again. Stafford 2021 is in my mind already a non-event.—Jelly Belly

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"Time capsule" Norton Commando


Story snapshot:

1977 850cc Interstate still in its original box

£20,000 - £30,000 is the estimated sale price


Clearly these oddities are still turning up from time to time. Classic bikes squirreled away for decades. Unused. Untested. Unenjoyed—except perhaps as a garage trinket and/or an objet d'conversation wiv your mates, or conceivably as an investment. And there's no reason for that to change in the coming years. Different bikes, perhaps, but same principle.


Or lack of.


Either way, these "time capsule" motorcycles leave us with mixed feelings. That's because as much as we like to see and hear bikes being ridden, there remains a sneaking pleasure in discovering one that's still intact, so to speak.


This one has been in its box since 1977. It's an 850cc Norton Commando Interstate, and it will be offered for sale at the H&H Sale at the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull on 14th November 2020. As far as we can tell from the press release, that will be a live sale—as opposed to an online sale. Except that Covid-19 is, apparently, on the rampage again, and it looks like another major lockdown is coming.


The bike, we're told, was shipped from the UK to Belgium in 1977. For some time it remained untouched, then travelled to Holland and then Spain. That was over a 43 year period.


Here's what the current owner, Keith Maddocks, has to say about this machine:

"It was in the mid 60's that my 'love affair' with Norton began. I'd owned plenty of bikes including Matchless, AJS, BSA, Velocette, Royal Enfield, and Triumph, but the one bike that took my breath away was the Norton 750 Atlas.

"The Atlas, in beautiful red with lots of chrome swept me off my feet and after several years of saving on apprenticeship money, I forked out very willingly. At last, she was mine and boy did we have some fun! She was fast, reliable, stood out at bike meets and a pleasure to ride. We went all over England and Europe.

"I have since owned many bikes and currently ride a 2014 Norton 961 Cafe Racer and the New Triumph Rocket 3. Although the latter is probably the most powerful bike in the world, I still get so much more pleasure riding my Norton. It has so much character and class and always draws a big crowd; she makes me very proud!

"Imagine how excited I was when I recently heard of a 1977 Norton Commando 850 Interstate that was still in its original packing case - 43 years old and still 'brand new'. I just had to buy it and I tracked down the owner in Spain. The Spanish collector, who owned 98 bikes, had bought it 10 years earlier at an auction in Belgium, after the owner of a Belgian motorbike shop passed away. Apparently he had kept it in his store room, in its original packing case, for about 35 years and for some strange reason refused to sell it to anyone!

"Since owning her I have never really touched her - she would look even better if I could give it a spring clean but to do it properly, I'd have to remove her from the packing case. Everything is there; three sets of keys, manufacturer’s advice sheets for the dealer, owners manual, service book, plus even a small spray can of Norton chain lube! (Possibly the only one in existence?)

"My intention was to display her this year at many of the big bike shows and lend her to museums from time to time. Covid-19 stopped me doing that this year and I have since decided to move to Spain permanently. Therefore, I cannot do any of this properly from Spain so I reluctantly have to sell. I hope she ends up in a good home and the lucky custodian keeps her another 43 years!



The expectation is that the bike will sell for somewhere between £20,000 and £30,000, and we think the chances of it being assembled and shown some asphalt are pretty remote. Like a rare wine, it could be that this Norton is doomed to languish in its bottle until forever. As for being an investment, it would have to sell for a lot more than £30,000 to show a decent return on the original outlay.


If we were wealthy, we'd buy this one, reassemble it and ride the hell out of it just to put it out of its misery. But no doubt a heated garage awaits this relic, and that will be the end of that until it next surfaces for re-sale.


It's a cruel world, brother.


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I would leave as is and put it upstairs next to my 11 mile T140D which I bought new and never got around to using.—Leo Brady

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US Cycle World to cease print publishing in Oct 2020 (digital mag only)

BMW Motorcycles is developing active aerofoil technology—patents filed

UK 60mph M-way (emissions) trials on sections of M1, M5, M6 & M602

The "Mini Moke" is back as "Moke". UK/French built. 1,035cc. 66bhp. £20k

Royal Enfield to supply CKD (Complete Knock Down) kits to Argentina


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Bonneville Build-Off Challenge 2020


Story snapshot:

Nine bikes this year

But nothing startling or original


Last year (2019) Laguna Triumph in Ashford, Kent was the winner of the Bonneville Build-Off Challenge with The Drag Racer; a homage to the illustrious X-75 Hurricane. This year, Laguna doesn't appear to be fielding an entry. But nine other Triumph dealers have certainly nailed their colours to this particular mast, and it's anyone's guess who's going to walk away (or, rather, ride away) with the prize.


In case you're not au fait with this comp, the idea is that UK Triumph dealers can choose from a 900cc or 1200cc Bonnie as a platform and, using a range of off-the-shelf-parts and homespun engineering skills, are invited to create a champion fit to wear the Triumph dealer custom crown. Etc.




We've had a look at the entrants, and without wishing to sound negative, we haven't found anything that particularly floats our boat—but there's nothing on the list that might sink it either. If we had to choose, and mercifully we don't, we might opt for the immediately above flat track style entrant from A1 Moto of York (two images shown).


Everything else is pretty much run-of-the mill. But naturally you might have different feelings. So have a look for yourself and, if you're so inclined and motivated, cast your vote.



The image at the top of this story, incidentally, is the Fowlers of Bristol entrant entitled VE Day Commemorative Bike. Immediately above these words is another shot of it. And there are a couple more snaps immediately below.




Yes, we think this despatch style motorcycle is a little cheesy and hasn't gone anywhere surprising or original. But the build quality looks high, and this bike is almost certainly going to get a lot of votes hurled in its direction—if only out of military sentiment. Pity Fowlers didn't get the livery sorted better. This colour is just ... vague. It needs some texture maybe, or some other trick paintwork. Just doesn't quite work for us.



Regardless, there's a link below awaiting your attention. But we have no idea how long that link will stay active, so better make your move sooner rather than later. However, voting ends on 14th October 2020. The winning bike will be chosen on 28th October 2020.


We'll run an update story as and when.


Bonneville Build-Off voting link


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▲ Left to right: Hank of Trike Design, Norman Hyde, Simon, Charlie Bevan, Paul from Trike Design


Norman Hyde's Simon Weston plan


Story snapshot:

Falklands War veteran's hopes to get mobilised

A charity project trike is looking for crowdfunding support


Simon Weston, you might recall, came to prominence during the 1982 Falklands War. He was the unfortunate Welsh Guards soldier who was aboard the Royal Fleet Auxiliary ship Sir Galahad when it was attacked and crippled by Argentine Skyhawk fighter jets.


Twenty-two of his fellow soldiers were killed. Simon suffered 46% burns and subsequently endured over 98 medical reconstructive operations to restore his face and body to some kind of normality.


He has since become heavily involved in various charities, is a campaigner for numerous military causes, has become a television celebrity, and has written numerous books including an autobiography.


Well now it seems that a motorcycle—specifically a trike—is being built to help Simon fulfil a long-standing dream of taking to two wheels. So okay, the nature of his disabilities means that he'll have to settle for three hoops. But the spirit is willing even if ... well, if the flesh is weak.



Enter Norman Hyde, ex-Triumph Meriden development engineer, businessman and speed record holder who recently met Simon, heard about his biking dream, and set about making it happen. Since then, a crowdfunding campaign has been launched in the hope of raising £25,000 to build the bike/trike and ensure that it fully addresses Simon's needs.


Triumph Motorcycles has donated a T120 Bonneville (organised through Bevan Triumph of Cardiff). We also hear that the Triumph Owner's Club has forked out £2,000 (but we can't establish that that's been confirmed). Other donations are already flooding, or at least trickling, in (£1,250 at the time of writing, which is five days into the campaign).


The trike will be built by Trike Designs which happens to operate from Simon's home town of Caerphilly in Wales. We're advised that Simon will use the bike as a charity vehicle (no pun intended), and that he won't personally benefit from the project.


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H-D LiveWire "sets new EV record"


Story snapshot:

Yankee speed queen goes electric

11.156 quarter/110.35mph


World records always fail to impress us. That's because they're invariably qualified by details—not least motorcycle records. As such, you can pretty much create your own category and become the fastest, most economical, tallest, shortest, ugliest, sexiest or deadest legend in your own lunchtime.


So it is with Harley-Davidson which is claiming a new record for an electric motorcycle—for a production motorcycle, that is. And, additionally, on a drag racing strip. Which, of course, means that someone else is also claiming a similar record on, maybe, a non-production bike, and on, maybe, sand, or an air strip, or a dried lake bed in Utah, or whatever.


So it goes.


Right now, we're talking specifically about US speed queen Angelle Sampey who piloted a 2020 model LiveWire to 110.35mph posting a quarter mile time of 11.156 seconds. Furthermore, this fast lady covered the eighth-mile in 7.017 seconds. And that's another (qualified) record. It happened at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indianapolis on 4th September 2020.


Amusingly, news of these high speed drag-racing antics took a full seven days to land in our mailbox—and that, in an internet age, is pretty much akin to not arriving at all. Next time out, we expect to see details of the new record hit us milliseconds after this drag queen (or whoever) blasts/whines over the finish line. That might impress us.




Here's what Sampey (apparently) had to say: "Let me tell you what’s amazing. That was the first time I rode the LiveWire. I could not wait to get it on the track. The LiveWire is so easy to ride. Just twist the throttle and go, and you really go!"


Wow. Sounds exactly like the kind of thing that H-D's marketing dept might dream up.


Also amusing is this line: "Sampey is the winningest female in motorsports history with three-time Pro Stock Motorcycle championships (2000-2002) and 43 Pro Stock motorcycle wins."


Winningest. Ya gotta love these Americanisms—and we mean no disrespect to our American cousins. Bring us all ya got, we say (and we've got a few howlers of our own that we'll trade).


Anyway, all that loose and dangerous banter aside, the bottom line with this press release is an invitation to all and sundry to get yourself astride a LiveWire asap and experience the thrill of motorcycling without all that noise, smoke, vibration and stuff.


It's a new world coming, people, and we're gonna have to make some adjustments whether or not we want to.


That's semi-official.



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Excitement at the achievements of an electric motorcycle will never be something I am affected by. Not for me the friendly banter at a club night debating who's got the most powerful washing machine motor between their legs. Fortunately I'm of a certain vintage that means the pleasures of my BSA Gold Star and the other bikes I own will see me out before the these things become compulsory. I have indeed been lucky enough to enjoy the 'open road' when it was still 'open' and when average speed cameras, excessive volumes of traffic and now, soul less electric vehicles were not what it was about. Sadly, we're witnessing the passing of a golden era.
—The Village Squire

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9/11/2020 Weston Beach Race has been cancelled (Coronavirus concerns)

Harley-Davidson UK LiveWire Tour planned. 8 dealers. Check locally.

US Sturgis Rally 460k visitors cited by IZA as Covid-19 "superspreaders" 

Melbourne Raceway Yorks back up to speed following £180,000 donations

From 14/9/20 maximum 6 riders (social gatherings). New Covid-19 rules

Diana Rigg actress

British "Avengers" (UK TV series) actress Diana Rigg has died aged 82


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Barry Sheene Bultaco TSS 250


Barry Sheene Bultaco TSS 250 to sell


Story snapshot:

To be sold at the NMM

£25,000 - £35,000 is the estimate


There's not an awful lot to actually say about this story, but we're going to say it anyway. The 1968 Bultaco TSS 250 featured immediately above was, we're advised, the bike (or at least one of them) that pretty much launched the racing career of Barry Sheene (1950 - 2003), one of the most charismatic racers that the UK has ever produced.


It was ridden by Sheene at the start of the 1968 season. But there are no details offered about whatever race wins there might have been astride this motorcycle. As for the provenance, we're advised that Sheene's Bultaco-dealer father, Frank, has authenticated the bike as the one he imported in 1967.



On the 14th November 2020, the bike will be offered for sale by auctioneers H&H; the venue will be the National Motorcycle Museum in Solihull, West Midlands. The estimate is £25,000 - £35,000.


The current owner has kept the bike safe since 1985 (largely by not riding it, no doubt), and it's up for sale because the owner "won't be riding it again". All the original parts, we're advised, are available along with a spare consecutive numbered engine. But note that some or all of these items are to be sold separately.



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