Velocette Venom
Lot 420
Offered from the estate of the late Clifford Jones,c.1954 Velocette 499cc 'Venom to Thruxton specification' (see text) Frame no. RS4418G Engine no. VM1978
Sold for £6,440 (US$ 10,824) inc. premium
Lot Details
Offered from the estate of the late Clifford Jones
c.1954 Velocette 499cc 'Venom to Thruxton specification' (see text)
Registration no. RFF 633
Frame no. RS4418G
Engine no. VM1978
'Prestige machine of the pushrod range was the Venom Thruxton 500. It incorporated all the accumulated experience gained in the years the Venom Clubman has been raced in long-distance events, plus the development of the 12 and 24-hour record breaker.' – C E A 'Titch' Allen, The Velocette Saga.

Production race successes, notably in the Thruxton 500 Mile event prompted Veloce Ltd to adopt that name for their newly introduced top-of-the-range sports roadster in 1964. Based on the existing Venom, the Thruxton featured a tuned engine with revised big-valve cylinder head, Amal GP carburettor, clip-on handlebars, rear-set footrests and a twin-leading-shoe front brake as standard equipment. Although the Thruxton took its name from the eponymous Hampshire racing circuit, arguably its finest hour came in 1967 when Manxman Neil Kelly won the '500' class in the Isle of Man TT's Production race, newly introduced for that year.

Although much admired by the café racing fraternity, the Thruxton's necessarily high price limited its appeal to a select handful of wealthy connoisseurs. It is thought that as few as 1,100 were made by the factory (with a further 55-60 assembled from parts by main dealers) and today the Thruxton is one of the most sought after of post-war Velocettes.

Although the machine offered here appears to be (broadly) to Thruxton specification (cutaway fuel tank, twin-leading-shoe front brake, alloy wheel rims, swept-back exhaust pipe, rear-set footrests, clip-on handlebars, racing seat, matching Smiths speedometer/rev counter, etc) the frame number suggests that this component started life in an MSS, while the Venom engine lacks the Thruxton version's 'VMT' number pre-fix and its internal specification is not known. Its late owner acquired 'RFF 633' in July 2010. Accompanying documentation consists of SORN paperwork, Swansea V5C and an almost complete run of old tax discs and MoT certificates issued between 2001 and 2009. A service manual and spare parts list are included in the sale. An opportunity to acquire a smartly presented Thruxton look-alike for a fraction of the cost of the genuine article.
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  2. James Stensel
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    Bonhams
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    United Kingdom
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    FaxFax: +44 20 8963 2801