We have it on pretty good authority that everyone at Bonhams' motorcycle department is ten-tenths happily drunk tonight having today achieved a record price at the firm's Sale of Important Collectors’ Motorcycles at Stafford. That went down today, Sunday 24th April 2016, and it further consolidates Bonhams' position as the guys to talk to when you're looking for extra big money.
Eight Brough Superiors that had been stored in barns for over half a century went under the hammer. Bonhams, which supplied these images, achieved a 100 percent sale and flogged the lot. The total price for all eight bikes was a whopping £752,625.
Lot 296, the ex-Hubert Chantrey 1932 Brough Superior 800cc Model BS4 Project (image immediately above) was perhaps unsurprisingly the highest selling lot. Bonhams is claiming a new record price for a British motorcycle sold at auction, and that price was £331,900. Meanwhile, the total amount of money raised by this sale was £3,454,501.
Other top selling bikes include:
▲ Lot 313, 1939 Vincent-HRD 998cc Rapide Series-A Project, £270,300
▲ Lot 312, 1929 Coventry-Eagle 980cc Flying-8 OHV, £163,900
▲ Lot 311, 1938 Brough Superior 982cc SS100, £219,900
Ben Walker, International Director for Bonhams Collectors’ Motorcycle Department, has been quoted as saying: “The Broughs of Bodmin Moor are the motorcycle discovery of the decade. They’ve caused quite a stir in the saleroom, with each one far exceeding estimate, allowing us to break our own world record for a British motorcycle sold at auction, the 1938 Brough Superior 750cc BS4 (actually 797cc, therefore nominally an 800) selling for £331,900 to a German bidder in the room.”
Jonathan Vickers, Bonhams West Country motoring specialist, added: “Having been housed in a Cornwall barn for so many decades, we’re delighted to have brought these machines back into the spotlight. They’ve sold phenomenally well, cementing Bonhams highly successful record breaking reputation in the collectors’ motoring industry.”
Click here for more on the Bodmin Broughs
— Del Monte
“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek. Now is the time for change".
— Barack Obama, December 2008
first election campaign
“We’ve come this far as a nation, now is NOT the time to change".
— President Barack Obama October 2012
"And I always believed in what Martin Luther King Junior called the fierce urgency of now. We should not fear change, we should embrace it."
— President Barack Obama,
"I think it's fair to say that maybe some point down the line there might be a UK-US trade agreement, but it's not going to happen any time soon because our focus is in negotiating with a big bloc, the European Union, to get a trade agreement done. The UK is going to be in the back of the queue."
— President Barack Obama
April 2016, addressing the UK prior to a British In/Out EC referendum
"I have said repeatedly that I will close Guantanamo, and I will follow through on that."
— President Barack Obama, November 2008
The top selling lot at H&H Auction's Duxford Sale on 19th April 2016 was the (immediately) above 1959 Matchless G50. This original machine (Lot 25) carries a matching engine and frame number and was restored in 2007 by G50 expert, George Beale. New parts include a big-end assembly, con-rod, main bearings, and gearbox mainshaft. The clutch, brakes and wheels were also reconditioned. The hammer came down at a creditable £39,950 which underlines the ongoing interest in these bespoke classic Matchless racers.
The G50 wasn't, however, supposed to take the top position at this sale. That spot had been reserved for Lot 42, a 994cc JAP-engined 1930 Brough Superior SS100 Grand Alpine combination (images immediately below). But the Brough, saddled with a hefty estimate of £280,000 - £350,000 didn't sell.
Apparently, this 86-year old unrestored bike was made to order and was supplied with the sidecar. Features include a Bentley & Draper spring type frame and a later (post 1933) 4-speed gearbox (as opposed to the standard 3-speed 'box). This, we understand, would most likely have been fitted at the factory in Nottingham.
Currently owned by Frank Solano, one-time president of the Brough club, this OHV between-the-wars gentleman's cruiser is said to have clocked up miles in Austria, Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Spain, Norway, Sweden, Portugal and the UK. But clearly, the expectations were too high, and that perhaps helped dampen interest.
▲ 1934 Ariel Square Four (Lot 56). This 600cc bike was restored in 2014/2015 and is said to be better than original. But can any restored motorcycle really improve upon the patina of dignified old age? It sold for £25,760.
▲ Ariel Square Four (also Lot 56) panel tank view, and all correct in every detail. These early bikes, we think, are the best of all the Squariels. Edward Turner's greatest achievement? Or is that accolade reserved for the 1938 Speed Twin? Certainly, the Square Four was more original.
▲ 1954 Vincent Rapide Series C. Lot 68. Sold for £36,160. Restored in 1999 by Steve Tonkin Restorations. Spent a good few years in a museum (for shame, for shame, etc). The price looks on the money for a Rapide.
Finally, this rare 1967 175cc Bridgestone Hurricane Scrambler (Lot 35, image above) isn't exactly our favourite biking brew, but we can see the appeal. This example, missing its left hand silencer, was found languishing in a barn and was sold as "requiring re-commissioning". The sale price was just £610 which must have delighted the new owner.
Features of the 50mm x 45mm, 9.5:1 twin-cylinder Hurricane (which is actually 177cc) include rotary disc inlet valves (as opposed to a contemporary run-of-the-mill piston port design), automatic engine lubrication, quality roller and needle-roller bearings in all the key areas, chrome cylinder bores and twin carburettors. You have to work hard to keep a Hurricane on the boil. But the 20hp @ 8,000rpm and 5-speed 'box helps make for some exhilarating riding.
Actually, the gearbox is both 4-speed and 5-speed. How so? It's because normally you change up through 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 - 5, then come back down in the usual way. But the Hurricane has a selective gearbox feature that allows you to change up through 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 and then hit NEUTRAL before prodding it onward and straight on to 1.
Weird? Potentially dangerous? Regardless, that was the thinking back then. The fifth gear, therefore, acts as an overdrive. This bike is capable of a fairly constant 65 - 70mph on the flat.
Said to be tough and reliable, these Bridgestones were also expensive to manufacture and sell, and due to inadequate marketing and distribution in the UK (and possibly elsewhere in the world), they weren't easy to get hold of. But if you hunted about a little, and didn't mind travelling, and haggling, you could get astride one. It's doubtful that bike dealers had much of a margin with these.
Finally however, the Bridgestone accountants pulled the plug, and the company ceased production and focussed on its tyres and other rubber products.
Overall, H&H did okay at Duxford, particular on the car side which saw some new records, but the firm was no doubt very disappointed by the failure to sell that Brough.
— Big End
If you're looking for a Sportier Sportster, Harley-Davidson reckons that its new 1200cc Roadster with up-rated suspension, steeper steering geometry and improved braking is just what you're looking for.
"The Roadster," says Harley-Davidson, "is a mash-up of styling genres, but the intent was to build a rider’s motorcycle, a Sportster that’s lean and powerful and connects the rider to the road."
"Mash up?" Is that like a "lash up", or a "balls up" or a "screw up" or even a "f— [Don't say it. This is a family magazine - Ed].
From where we're sitting, this looks like a confused motorcycle that doesn't really know what it wants to be. But what do we know? Check the link below to switch over to our general news page for more on this bike. You can make up your own mind.
2016 Harley-Davidson Roadster
— Queen of Sump
It costs £45. That's the bottom line, but if you're restoring a 1960s/1970s air-cooled 750cc Triumph or BSA triple we think it's forty-five quid well spent.
Our copy arrived about a week or so ago, and we've been quietly thumbing through the pages—and at times getting pretty well stuck in.
The author's name is Chris Rooke. He hails from Sheffield (by way of Oxford), and it's clear that this is no bluffer's guide. Here at Sump, we've got some familiarity with Tridents/Rockets, but evidently not as much as this bloke. He owns two of 'em (a T150 and a T160), and he's restored them both, and that's what this volume is all about. Two accounts in one.
He's not claiming that the book will replace a Trident shop manual, or a Trident parts manual, or even a Haynes manual. Instead, it's a supplementary work intended to flesh out the more established bones that are already rattling around on the market, and you can never get enough alternative info when you're working on a motorcycle.
Like most if not all Veloce books, the design is pretty uninspiring and run-of-the-mill, but it's kind of appropriate too given the subject matter. In other words, you're not going to spend any time admiring the typesetting or waxing lyrical over the font choice. Instead, you're going to get straight into the meat of this particular pie and simply eat.
The photo quality isn't fantastic either, but it's nowhere near as bad as the author thinks. It seems that he had a camera failure about halfway through a rebuild and switched temporarily to an inadequate back-up device. But don't get thinking that you'll be faced with page after page of blurry, poorly-framed images, because that ain't the case. It's simply that here and there the resolution could be a little higher, and the contrast might be improved. That's all.
What we especially like is the friendly, everyday tone. The author's voice is as neutral as a road sign. He's never superior. And he's never patronising either. He's not clever. Or comical. Or dry. Or wet. Or dull. Or sharp. Or academic. Or wordy. He just gets on with the business of transferring his information into your head as painlessly as possible.
There's a nice intro detailing his biking background and explaining how he got into Tridents, and there's also a helpful "Lessons learnt" recap at the end of each section designed to help cement in your mind the most important points.
We can't see that Chris Rooke has missed out very much, if anything. Engine, gearbox, clutch, cycle parts, electrics, special tools, and suppliers; it's all here in over 200 pages. The size is slightly larger than A4. The pictures are colour throughout. And here's a book number: ISBN 978-1-845848-82-8.
The £45 price tag is inevitably going to drop. But we haven't even looked to see what's on offer. The author has clearly earned his pay, so if you can afford it, don't be cheap.
It's said that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. Well if so, you're in pretty safe hands here. Recommended.
Triumph T150 - Sump buyers guide
Trident T160 - Sump quick review
That, we're told by a recent survey, is the amount of time that the average Briton spends sitting in his/her car/van/truck going nowhere and staring at a red traffic light.
Apparently, there are now 33,800 sets of traffic lights on British roads; up from 23,480, or 23 percent, since 2013.
This recent survey also reckons that 29 percent of road users have at one time or another accidentally driven through a red light, while 32 percent admit having done it deliberately.
These stats actually tell us little about road user behaviour, but they do underline how unreliable surveys are when the pollsters ask us to tell 'em the truth. We figure that nearer 100 percent of road users have accidentally driven through red, and more like 75 - 80 percent have done so on purpose (especially in the major cities where it's nearer 100 percent).
But what the hell do we know? From Sump HQ, the nearest set of traffic lights is ten miles away, and we avoid most of these by taking to the back roads.
Meanwhile, we hear that most motorists reckon they spend their traffic light downtime by fiddling with the stereo (59 percent), or adjusting the air-conditioning (38 percent), or eating a snack (36 percent).
We can think of one or two other things that drivers routinely do at traffic lights, but let's not go there. And we also note that the survey press release made no mention of drivers checking emails, surfing the net, fiddling with satnavs or reading newspapers. But maybe we received the abridged version.
Respected British Journalist (Sir) Simon Jenkins, who's also the current head of the National Trust, is still lobbying for a 90 percent switch-off for the UK's traffic light network and reckons that we can simply fight it out according to the Highway Code "right of way" rules. At Sump, we're still broadly in support of that notion even though it's counter-intuitive. Jenkins reckons that traffic lights are just another way for the government to exercise control over us, which is true, but is not necessarily as ominous as it might sound.
However, until the big national traffic light cull happens, the current minimum penalty for jumping the lights is a £100 fine and 3 penalty points on your licence.
If you're not used to riding in British cities, take note that in many areas jumping the lights is a local requirement. Failure to do so can result in a tail-end shunt and a short (or even long) trip in a vehicle flashing another set of coloured lights.
See Sump October 2014 Classic Bike News for more on this story
— Big End
Don't forget that this weekend (16th - 17th April 2016) the Kickback Show kicks off at Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire. Expect flat trackers, street trackers, drag bikes, chops, bobs, brats, cafe racers and more.
Here are the opening times:
Foyer cafe demo Hall: 11am
Main show hall: 1pm - 7pm
10am - 5pm
Kickback is being organised in association with Covec, Bull-it Jeans, Michelin, Sinroja Motorcycles (see BMW custom immediately above), 100% Biker magazine and Krazy Horse. Ticket prices are £8.95 (advance), or £10 (gate).
— Queen of Sump
We first reported on this outfit in Sump December 2014. Back then, the sole production bike was billed as a Sterling Autocycle flat tanker (by the Black Douglas Motorcycle Company). Well this is the new Sterling Countryman Deluxe Mk5 (image above). The retro machine was then selling for (or at least carried an asking price of) £6,170 (€7,900) and was powered by a Honda CB 125cc (or optional 230cc) clone manufactured by Zongshen in China.
We're pleased to say that these guys, based in Milan, Italy, are still campaigning the concept. But according to the latest press release, the price has risen to £7,500 (€9,480) for the 125cc version, and £8,671 (€10,950) for the 230cc. And there's no mention of Zongshen now, except to say that the Honda engine is built "under licence".
But otherwise, the bike appears much the same. Still, you've got to admire Fabio Cardoni who, we believe, is still driving (or riding) the project. But that engine, although a very worthy pushrod design, just looks and feels wrong for this. And the price is now arguably way too high. To get volume sales, this motorcycle really needs to be below £6,000, and closer to £4,000. But is that missing the point?
— Del Monte
"HELP US CHALLENGE THE INVESTIGATORY POWERS BILL." That's the heading on a recently received email from Big Brother Watch regarding an advertising campaign that the organisation is supporting. It's part of a coalition entitled: DON'T SPY ON US.
In March 2016, the second reading of the 245-page bill was voted on in the House of Commons. It was passed by 281 votes to 15 votes. That means it's further down the road and is well on the way to be written into law.
[more on this Big Brother Watch story]
This book was first published in 2012, so some of you out there might have seen it, and even bought a copy.
But we're told that it sold out, and there was still a demand for it. So it was reprinted.
We missed this book first time around. We don't know why. Just looking the other way or something. Or out riding maybe. But we're looking the right way now, and we can start by saying that this is a very interesting tome.
It's no lightweight, however. You don't exactly have to be an academic to read it. But you will need to be sober, and wear your best specs, and find somewhere quiet.
The author is a guy named Steve Koerner. He got a BA in history from the University of Victoria (Canada), and a PhD in Social History from the University of Warwick (England). More importantly, he owns a 1958 500cc Matchless G80, a 1974 850cc Norton Commando, and a 2000 Harley-Davidson Road King. He lives in British Columbia, Canada, and he's obviously shed fifty gallons of blood to get this written.
His book is packed with information and insights into the demise of the British motorcycle industry. Some of the material we've seen before. Actually, we've seen a lot of this material before. But mere facts are never enough. It's the analysis that counts, and Koerner has delved deeply into the root causes of the collapse of AMC, Ariel, BSA, Norton, Triumph et al, and has presented his arguments in an intelligent, readable and coherent way. There's plenty of boardroom intrigue and political machinations. And we're taken repeatedly into the filing cabinets and tool rooms and exposed to the atmosphere of an industry that, in hindsight, ultimately had nowhere to go but down.
We should mention now that we haven't finished the book. These days, there aren't enough quiet places and peaceful moments in the world to settle down with a book such as this; not on demand, anyway. So we're working through it as and when, and we're about halfway through.
What we especially like is (a) the hard numbers backing up the aforementioned facts, and (b) the contextual information. In other words, this book gives you an all-important sense of time and place, and it highlights many other key issues around the country (and the world) that impacted on British motorcycle manufacture. Actually, there's one other point here worth mentioning. The book has hundreds of notes and references intended to underpin the facts and highlight the sources, and that naturally adds authority to this work.
The narrative isn't written in a linear way. Rather, it flits back and forth as and when required, and that's perhaps the only way to deal with so much material. We wouldn't call it an enjoyable read. There's no humour here. No witticisms. No wry observations. It just gets on with the fundamentals and leaves the drollery and facetiousness to the usual journos. Such as us.
There are many interesting industry pictures in this book (all black and white, and many unseen by us before), and we counted 350 pages. The book dimensions are 165mm x 240mm. The covers are soft. The information is hard. The publisher is Crucible Books, an imprint of Carnegie Publishing. The price is around £20.
— Big End
Most of you Sumpsters will know this man better by his professional name, Thunderclap Newman. He was the pianist whose fingers underpinned that evocative and near-timeless piano solo in the 1969 hit song Something in the Air.
If you were around in 1969 you might remember the impact that song had. It was released by Polydor in June that year, and by July was at the number one spot in the UK charts where it stayed for three weeks. By December, over one million copies of that record were sold. Every radio station between Earth and Mars picked up that platter and spun it over and over again. And every pub and cafe in the country kept a copy on the jukebox.
Rebellion was firmly on the agenda in 1969. The movie Easy Rider (July), the Woodstock Festival (August), and Newman's anti-establishment anthem conspired against the forces of contemporary social mediocrity and gave a generation of counter-culture vultures a sense of direction and purpose which, okay, ultimately had little at its core except the spirit of non-conformity.
Andy Newman didn't write the words to that song. Those came courtesy of fellow band member John "Speedy" Keen who happened to be Pete (The Who) Townsend's chauffeur.
In fact, it was Townsend who helped form the band, Thunderclap Newman. As we understand it, John "Speedy" Keen was, when not chauffeuring, a drummer with musical ambitions. Townsend recognised his talents and brought Keen and Newman together. Jimmy McCulloch, a bass guitarist from Glasgow was also recruited, and the nucleus of youthful (session) musicians was backed by Townsend himself.
"Call out the instigators
Because there's something in the air
We've got to get together sooner or later
Because the revolution's here, and you know it's right
And you know that it's right..."
Newman was born in Hounslow, West London. He attended Ealing Art College and worked as a GPO (General Post Office) engineer. But when Something in the Air hit the airwaves, everything changed. For a while, anyway. Thunderclap Newman were suddenly in demand and began gigging and touring, later with Leon Russell and Deep Purple.
Off-record, Newman cut a curious figure with his beard, glasses, trilby and trademark bow tie. In an age of rampant flower power, he was definitely a pretty "square" looking dude. However, the strident sound he made on the ivories was worthy anything by The Beatles and helped elevate the band to the top of a wave that's still rolling, and for the rest of that summer, he was da man.
▲ John "Speedy" Keen, Andy Newman and Jimmy McCulloch, aka Thunderclap Newman, aka the sound of 1969.
Unfortunately, follow up hits eluded the band, and with two albums and three less successful singles in their back catalogue, the group split in 1971. Newman made a solo album, and he played for a while with the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band. McCulloch later hit some notes for John Mayall and Paul McCartney's Wings, but in September 1979 he died of a heroin induced heart attack. Speedy Keen worked for a while as a record producer (notably for Motorhead) and died in 2002.
"Hand out the arms and ammo
We're going to blast our way through here
We've got to get together sooner or later
Because the revolution's here, and you know it's right
And you know that it's right..."
In 2010, Newman enjoyed something of a comeback, albeit with a new band (which included Pete Townsend's son, Josh). This new combo released the album Beyond Hollywood.
But Newman's great moment was that one song that's still a familiar sound on the airwaves and TV commercials all around the world. Pretty much everyone knows the lyrics to the first verse. But how many know the second? And what the hell is an "instigator"? And does it matter?
Andy Thunderclap Newman was 73. He is survived by a brother.
The biker in the picture above—or, rather, not in the picture—is Graham Butcher from (we think) Lincolnshire. He was (recently?) a victim of a Sorry-mate-I-didn't-see-you accident and suffered injuries that "impacted his life significantly".
It seems that he contacted Minster Law, a firm of solicitors with offices in York, Wakefield and London, and they took on his case (the details of which are not forthcoming).
Since then, Butcher has been spearheading a motorcycle awareness campaign backed by the aforementioned law men. To illustrate the campaign's core problem, a photo of Butcher was taken by an unknown smudger. Then the image was doctored by an outfit called VIZard.
Now, Butcher and Minster would like everyone reading this news story to get on board the campaign and send the image across social media sites reminding them of the importance of looking out for invisible motorcyclists. And naturally, you might, in passing, want to mention Minister.
We don't understand social media (and don't really want to understand it), but apparently you need this hashtag:
Grammatically speaking, that tag needs to be punctuated with a question mark. But we can pretend that that's invisible too. Anyway, if it sounds like something in which you want to get involved (and why wouldn't you?), please do get involved.
And if you need a solicitor (which in our experience is almost as bad as a road accident), Minster claim they've been doing a stand up job since 2003 when the firm was founded. In the past ten years, they say that 23,000 bikers have benefited from their involvement, and therefore (not having any information to the contrary) we'll take 'em at their word. The firm also reckon that they handle 20 percent of all UK motorcycle personal injury claims. And being upstanding members of the legal profession, would they lie?
Lastly, reading between the lines of the (clumsy) press release, it looks like Graham Butcher has indeed taken a pretty serious knock. So naturally, we hope he's on the mend and we wish him well.
— Del Monte
Is your new Street Twin on fire? Chances are that it isn't, but you'd better have it checked over because Triumph Motorcycles, we hear, has identified a problem on some models and has issued a recall.
Acknowledgement of the problem has been made by the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and the UK DVSA has also been so advised. That's the word on the street, anyway.
The bikes under scrutiny are Street Twins manufactured between 7th September 2015 and 21st November 2015. The problem is said to be the wiring harness in the fuel tank. Specifically, some kind of faulty manufacturing issue has, in a few instances, led to a leak that can send the fuel down through the harness allowing it to drip over the engine.
Anyone familiar with riding classic bikes and tickling carburettors are probably used to dealing with the odd petrol weep and probably won't be too panicked. But it's obviously a potential danger and needs fixing.
Triumph has apparently been working with the supplier of the faulty component, and a modification is available. So contact your local dealer if you think you're in the firing line.
Note that some reports are stating that the new T120 Bonneville is also affected by the recall, except that the T120 hasn't actually been launched yet. Not in the UK, anyway. We checked with Triumph's press office, and they confirmed that the T120 isn't yet available in any market worldwide. But interestingly, the press office didn't know about the recall notice either.
We then checked with Jack Lilley Motorcycles in Romford, and they knew nothing about the recall. And we spoke to Webb Triumph in Lincoln, and they confirmed that the T120 won't be launched in the UK until later this month (around 23rd April 2016).
It's possible that the T120 is in fact now available in the USA. But overall, it's not clear (to us, anyway) what bikes are affected in what markets. Our advice is to take a peak under the fuel tank, have a sniff, and (if it looks and smells okay) just ride on.
— Big End
If you're into DOT Motorcycles, the chances are that the name Roy Dickman is a familiar one. He's been flying the DOT flag for decades, sells spares, and is a mine of information. Well, Roy's business was raided over the recent Easter holiday (Saturday 26th March to Tuesday 29th March 2016), and up to £25,000 worth of bikes and equipment has been stolen.
As ever, it isn't just the monetary cost that's at issue here. The three motorcycles all had sentimental value, and it's hard to put a price on that.
Specifically, a 1955 DOT Mancunian 197cc worth around £4,500 has been lifted. Also taken was a 1925 350cc BSA worth around £7,500; a 1962 500cc Triumph Tiger 100A worth around £7,500; around £1,000 in tools, and the wheels of a very rare and historic 1908 DOT Peugeot which, we hear, won the first motorised (twin cylinder) Isle of Man TT in 1908. The rider was Harry Reed.
The raid happened at Roy's business premises which is the old DOT Motorcycle factory in Ellesmere Street, Hulme, Manchester.
We're guessing that at least two thieves were involved, and more likely three or four. And there has to be some fairly serious motorised transport involved. So it's not likely to be kids. In fact, we figure that there's a good chance the bastards are members of the classic bike community, albeit possibly in a fringe way. Monkey see, monkey want, monkey take.
If you've got any information about this raid, or if you're offered any of the bikes, spill the beans to the Manchester coppers. If it makes any difference (which it shouldn't) Roy is now 76 years old and is in failing health. He's looking to retire this year and would very much like the bikes returned. So all eyes open for these being offered or sold in suspicious/unlikely circumstances, please.
The machines might not come onto the market for a while, so perhaps you'll try and stay as alert as possible for the next few months. It's Roy's bikes today, and ours next. The incident reference number is: 290316/549
— Queen of Sump
Martin Lampkin has died aged 65. Most closely associated with Bultaco, he was always a popular figure on the British and European trials scene. In 1973, he won the European Trials Championship. Two years later, that championship had been expanded globally, and Martin walked away with the top prize making him the first FIM Trial World Championship winner.
Lampkin is also credited as a four-time winner of the Scott Trial (1977, 1978, 1981, 1982); a three-time British trials national championship winner (1973, 1978, 1980) and a three time winner of the Scottish Six Days Trial (1976, 1977, 1978).
Born and raised in Yorkshire, the Lampkin family has long been deeply entrenched in motorcycle sport. Martin's brothers, Arthur and Alan Lampkin, were successful members of the BSA factory racing team during the 1960s. His son, Dougie, is a 12 times World Trials Championship winner.
In 1982 Martin Lampkin retired as a professional rider. Thereafter, he was regular seen at sporting events and spent the greater part of his time supporting his son, Dougie.
For the past year, however, he had been battling poor health and finally succumbed on 3rd April 2016. He is survived by his wife, Isobel, sons Dougie and Harry, and will be hugely missed by friends and fans.
— Del Monte
Okay, here's the third T-shirt in Sump's "Blueprint" range designed and printed for all you hardcore Norton riders, many of whom already bought our existing Norton tee (thank you very much) and then had the temerity to ask if there was anything else on the way. Well there is, and this is it, and we think it looks pretty damn cool.
We might have made this Norton "Blueprint" T-shirt more model specific (i.e. Commando or Atlas or Dominator, etc), but after some head-scratching and a couple of bottles of beer we decided that a more generic design was more appropriate. After all, although the big Norton air-cooled parallel twins from Bracebridge Street and Plumstead are all very different in feel, performance and temperament, they share common genes courtesy of the late, great Mr Bert Hopwood. And if you're a Norton man (or woman), you'll appreciate how this design gets right to the heart of the mechanical matter and reflects a common heritage.
As for a slogan, we opted for THE WHOLE IS GREATER THAN THE SUM OF THE PARTS which is exactly what we feel about Norton, a very special motorcycle dish best served hot.
These quality 100% cotton pre-shrunk silk-screened tees are in stock now, fresh off the presses and printed right here in the UK. They're priced at just £15.99 plus P&P. The colour is white on Blue Dusk which (if you want to get technical) roughly translates as Pantone 7546C, a vaguely metallic hue intended to reflect Norton's engineering excellence.
The tees are available in M, L, XL and 2XL sizes.
BSA M20 "Blueprint" T-shirt
Triumph "Blueprint" T-shirt
Norton "Blueprint" T-shirt
— Big End
See what we mean? You stick three little dots in the heading of a news item and people start to wonder if you've got some kind of agenda here or are simply falling back onto lazy cliché.
Well the truth is, it's the latter. Lazy cliché. It's dumb really, and we apologise, but it all comes down to the entrenched and bigoted notion that the good men and women in Bulgaria couldn't possibly be interested in anything but revolution and farming and busting into the EC and starting a new life.
But the fact is, the Bulgarians love their cars and motorcycles as much as anyone else. And if you're a petrolhead, that's your international passport into the world of speed, travel, filthy hydrocarbons, hot rubber, bugs in your teeth, etc.
Actually, the Eastern Europeans are often even more enthusiastic about their wheels because they don't take them for granted, which is easier to do on this side of the Channel than the far side of the Adriatic.
So we shouldn't be at all surprised by this new online Bulgarian art shop which, we understand, is dedicated to capturing in pen and ink the excitement of car culture, and then printing it on high quality art paper.
We don't see any motorcycles on the list, but no doubt that will come sooner or later. This is, after all, some kind of artist's cooperative that invites submissions from similar minded scribblers hoping to capitalise on their talents. And plenty of bikers are into cars too, classic, sporting or otherwise. We certainly are.
With this new site, you can expect to find images of racing classics, hot rods, cars for the well-heeled, and cars for those who prefer sandals. It all looks pretty serious stuff, but until you've got an example hanging on your living room wall, you're not going to get to know. Sometimes you just have to take a chance.
The prices are typically around €25 - €40. There's a wide range of print sizes, and many of the works are limited editions. But you'll have to check the site for yourself if you want the full picture, no pun intended. And if you're an automotive artist looking for some extra exposure, maybe there's something here for you.
And while we remember, the top picture is Jim Clark at the wheel of a Lotus 33 Climax. Meanwhile, German racer Wolfgang von Trips is pictured piloting a Ferrari 246 F1. Lastly, does anyone need to be told that the third image is the tail fin of a 1957 Chevy Bel Air?
No, we didn't think so.
— The Third Man
We don't know what the deadline is for this, but don't hang around. The word is that a TV company or similar is looking for a rider with a sidecar outfit for some kind of job. Apparently, the rider must like dogs and not be allergic to them because the mutt will be riding in the chair. And both of you will be on screen. Or on a poster. Or whatever.
The shooting takes place in Scotland and kicks off on 17th April 2016 and will last at least until 21st April 2016. As for payment, the successful candidate will earn £5,000. Your licence and insurance must be up to date.
Sound like your kind of thing? Okay. Follow the email link below, and make sure you do it quickly. We can imagine a very long queue forming for this one.
One final thing, include a photo of yourself and your outfit.
— Big End