1911 Rudge 499cc Brooklands Racing Motorcycle
Frame no. 632922
Engine no. 1504
Formed in 1894, Rudge-Whitworth built its first motorcycle in 1910 using an engine of its own design: a 499cc single with inlet-over-exhaust valve gear. The new 3½hp model proved outstandingly successful; in 1911 Victor Surridges became the first 500cc machine to exceed 60 miles in one hour, while Rudge-mounted Cyril Pullin won the Isle of Man Senior TT for the Coventry manufacturer in 1914. Prior to this landmark achievement, Rudge had jumped the gun somewhat with the introduction of a TT model in the spring of 1911, before any of its machines had competed in the Isle of Man! Rudge continued to set world records at Brooklands, establishing new one-hour and two-hour marks in 1912 at more than 65 miles and 122 miles respectively.
The Edwardian-era Rudge offered here has been restored as a replica of that raced by David C Bolton at Brooklands and the Isle of Man TT in 1912. (A photograph of Bolton and his Rudge taken from the Brooklands Archive is reproduced in Peter Hartleys book, The Story of Rudge Motorcycles). Accompanying documentation includes a Sunbeam MCC Pioneer Certificate and a letter from marque specialist, Bryan Reynolds (author of Dont trudge it, Rudge it) stating that the engine is original to the frame and that the machine left the factory equipped with an NSU two-speed gear.