Top Gear duo bag £77k at storm­ing Stafford show

May and Ham­mond sell their bikes at the most amaz­ing Stafford two-wheeled event ever

Motorcycle Monthly - - Stafford -

Sell­ing their top gear

JAMES MAy and Richard Ham­mond were among the Stafford­shire County Show­ground crowd to see their per­sonal mo­tor­cy­cle col­lec­tions go un­der the ham­mer at a record­break­ing Bon­hams’ bike auc­tion.

All of the 12 ma­chines owned by the duo were snapped up by en­thu­si­as­tic bid­ders at the sale, which took place at the 35th an­nual Ca­role Nash In­ter­na­tional Clas­sic Mo­tor­Cy­cle Show, on April 25-26.

The two shared laughs with on­look­ers as Mr May even jok­ingly bid on his first lot af­ter auc­tion­eer Mal­colm Bar­ber had opened with the line: “We all know why th­ese are be­ing sold…”

De­spite their time as pre­sen­ters on the BBC mo­tor­ing se­ries Top Gear ap­pear­ing to be at an end, both men seemed in good spirts and played along with the joke de­spite the fact their auc­tion ap­pear­ance had been or­gan­ised long be­fore the re­cent Top Gear furore.

Ham­mond’s 2010 Nor­ton Commando raked in the most money from the pair’s garage clearout, sell­ing for £15,180. A range of Bri­tish and Ja­panese ex­am­ples com­pleted the line-up achiev­ing a to­tal of £77,625.

Well-known for their love of clas­sic mo­tor­cy­cles, both con­sid­ered bids dur­ing the auc­tion but con­tin­ued to play the part when asked about po­ten­tial pur­chases. “I was in­ter­ested in a 3.5 horse­power Raleigh but I lost my bot­tle be­cause I am un­em­ployed. I did have a job in a pub but they said I am too old,” May said.

The two also be­came dis­grun­tled when the same TV crew asked about their Top Gear fu­tures de­spite the sub­ject clearly hav­ing been banned from dis­cus­sion be­fore the chat. The clip has be­come some­thing of an in­ter­net sen­sa­tion, ap­pear­ing in the na­tional press and on the popular Lad Bi­ble web­site.

A Stafford Spring record-breaker

Pulling in more than £2.2 mil­lion and with 86% of lots sold, Bon­hams’ 2015 Stafford Spring Sale sur­passed all pre­vi­ous to­tals for the an­nual event.

A 1939 Vin­cent HRD Se­ries-A Rapide, orig­i­nally bought as a swap for a £10 note and an Amal TT car­bu­ret­tor, topped the lots sell­ing for a stag­ger­ing £275,900 to a bid­der in the room.

Bon­hams re­ported that it was Bri­tish ma­chines which sparked the high­est bid­ding with nine out of the top 10 lots sold com­ing from iconic UK man­u­fac­tur­ers. Among the high­lights were: a 1930 Brough Su­pe­rior ohv 680 Black Alpine (£138,140), a 1955 Vin­cent 998cc Black Shadow Se­ries-D (£72,060), the 1926 Coven­try Ea­gle 980cc Fly­ing Eight (£106,780), and a 1933 Brough Su­pe­rior 1096cc 11-50hp Project (£52,900).

Ben Walker, in­ter­na­tional direc­tor of the mo­tor­cy­cle depart­ment at Bon­hams, said: “This is our best-ever Spring Stafford Sale and we’re de­lighted with the re­sults. We’ve seen some fan­tas­tic prices, with a new prece­dent be­ing set.

“The level of en­thu­si­asm at Stafford is al­ways bril­liant with peo­ple trav­el­ling from across the globe to at­tend and those that couldn’t were able to bid from the com­fort of their homes on the phone or via our on­line bid­ding plat­form.”

Stafford wel­comes rac­ing roy­alty

This year’s April Stafford showmight just have seen the great­est ever col­lec­tion of mo­tor­cy­cle su­per­stars to have graced the event, ac­cord­ing to Clas­sic Racer mag­a­zine edi­tor Malc Wheeler.

Nick and Tony Jef­feries, star guests of the Ca­role Nash In­ter­na­tional Clas­sic Mo­tor­Cy­cle Show, were joined by Char­lie Wil­liams, Alex Ge­orge, Steve Plater, Colin See­ley, Sammy Miller and Mick An­drews as the week­end saw the great and good of motorcycling de­scend on

Stafford­shire County Show­ground.

Malc said: “By my count there was a to­tal of 17 Isle of Man TT race wins present; Wil­liams, 8, Ge­orge, 3, T Jef­feries, 3, Plater, 2, N Jef­feries, 1. That’s not to men­tion two of the best and most suc­cess­ful off-road rid­ers of all time in Sammy Miller and Mick An­drews.

“While the bikes and celebri­ties in the auc­tion might have stolen a few of the head­lines, there’s no doubt in my mind who the real stars of the show were!”

The broth­ers Jef­feries took part in sev­eral of the event’s at­trac­tions across the week­end in­clud­ing regular on- stage in­ter­views with com­pere Steve Plater. The York­shire­men talked about their decades of rac­ing ex­pe­ri­ence, touched on their fam­ily’s his­tory in the mo­tor­cy­cle in­dus­try and brought two of their win­ning ma­chines to show­case.

There was also a fo­cus on The David Jef­feries Me­mo­rial Fund, which was set up in hon­our of Tony’s late son. DJ, as he was af­fec­tion­ately known, died fol­low­ing a crash dur­ing TT prac­tice in 2003, pre­ma­turely bring­ing an end to a ca­reer which had al­ready yielded four North West 200 vic­to­ries and nine TT wins.

From £10 and a carb swap to nearly £276,000! The Rapide was the best seller.

Ham­mond (left) and May (right) get tips from James Robin­son, edi­tor, The Clas­sic Mo­tor­cy­cle

Top: Tony Jef­feries (Above: Clas­sics in the cavalcade)

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.