1922/23 Douglas 3 ½hp 494cc Sports Model S1 Brooklands Racer
Engine no. IOM AE 656
Wartime years saw Douglas production focused almost entirely on the 2 3/4hp model which certainly earned its colours in military service in The Great War. When motor sport recommenced after the end of hostilities the Experimental Department at Douglas witnessed a hive of activity with considerable emphasis on developing racing machines which would put the Douglas marque in lights at the hugely popular Brooklands circuit. There was no more testing race track than Brooklands for proving reliability of machinery and the skills of the rider. Cyril Pullin was a highly able engineer/rider who was campaigning his own 500cc Douglas to great effect in the early 1920s, achieving for Douglas a new record of 100.06mph at the Brooklands circuit, the first 500cc machine to lap at the magic ton. It was Les Bailey who had recruited Pullin and provided him with his first new overhead valve model Douglas, and Pullins mechanical genius applied to the 3 1/2hp racing models enabled each racing machine to be offered with guaranteed 100mph performance. The indomitable Douglas Team of Rex Judd, Cyril Pullin and Freddie Dixon were to become the stuff of legends.
The racing 3 1/2hp model was developed into a production model with 68mm x 68mm square engine dimensions, overhead valves, shock absorbing devices in both the clutch and the rear wheel and driving through a three speed gearbox with chain final drive. Many a boy racer was thus able to emulate the racing performances of his heroes for a modest price of just £130.This racing machine has been extensively and competitively used during long term ownership with Colin Clifford. Until recently it was fitted with engine number AE 422, but its original engine, IOM AB 656, has recently been replaced in the bike. The machine is presented to Brooklands specification, notably with no front brake, and is equipped with all speed modifications, including racing handlebars, Smiths 0-8,000 rev counter and 20 inch wheels, now fitted with later well base rims. It is equipped with three speed gearbox with clutch and quickly detachable and interchangeable wheels essential for racing purposes.In short, here is a significant racing Douglas with a first class track record in the hands of its present owner, ready, subject to normal safety checks and tuning to suit its new owners riding abilities, to take to the track again.
- Please note that since the photograph in the catalogue was taken the original engine has been put back in the machine.