Ex-Phil Vare, Isle of Man Senior TT, Works
1929 Scott 596cc Racing Motorcycle
Registration no. VF 6543
Frame no. 7M
Engine no. RZ 2513
Yorkshire's Scott concern had a long and honourable history in both the Isle of Man TT races and on shorter circuits. Their TT participation started in 1909, in the era when two-strokes were held to have a power advantage over other machines, the ACU insisting that two-strokes were rated at 1.25 of a four-stroke's cylinder capacity and water-cooled ones - there was only the Scott - at 1.32! This rule was dropped in 1911 and in 1912 and 1913 Scott won, having, by 1914, made fastest lap in the first four 'mountain' races.
Their participation continued during the 1920s, though the under-capitalised factory found it increasingly difficult to match the better funding and organisation of Norton, Rudge and Sunbeam. Scotts pinned their faith on their unique central-flywheel, water-cooled twin, an engine which remained in production until the 1970s and which has given such riding pleasure to generations of riders, the writer included.
In 1929, Scott fielded six riders on completely re-worked racers with distinctive frames and running-gear and much more powerful engines. Owing to the late arrival of the machines, the Scott riders had to practise on earlier bikes or their own machines. P A E (Phil) Vare qualified on his own 1928 'TT Replica' Scott, with only brief rides on a Works machine before the race. All six started, but five went out, Vare being the last to go on the final lap. After a fall at Quarter Bridge damaged his twist grip he used the cut-out button when changing gear. This caused the holed piston that forced his retirement. Only Tommy Hatch finished, coming thirteenth in the race.
What makes '7M' so unique a works Scott is that, after the race, Phil Vare negotiated a deal with the cash-strapped factory, in which his 'Replica' Scott was part-exchanged for the repaired '7M', which, when taken home to Norwich, was registered as VF 6543. Riding again for Scott in 1930, Vare rode the Senior TT on a spare '29 machine - retiring again with piston trouble - the supplied 'works' bikes being the 'vertical' Scott twins, described by him as 'un-rideable'.
Phil Vare kept VF 6543 for some years, riding it at short-circuit events until selling it on when he was a Scott agent. Amazingly, it has had only three owners, the third, the vendor, acquiring it in the early '60s from the second owner Mr J F H Roberts (of Brentwood, Essex). Very commendably, and fully realising what a unique Scott he had, the vendor resisted the temptation to do a cosmetic restoration, restricting work to mechanical reconditioning, or the careful replacement of missing parts with period replacements, such as the '600' cylinder block now fitted ( a contemporary blind-head '500' block and pistons are amongst the spares offered with the lot). The engine has never run, nor has the machine been ridden in his ownership and thus re-commissioning will be required.
Trophy winner at the 2012 Scott Abbotsholme Rally, and most emphatically not a racer 'reconstructed from parts' but an arguably unique, original and beautiful reminder of that pre-war era, VF 6543 comes with not only a V5 and old style continuation log-book but many papers relating to its history and copies of period photographs as well as detailed autographed letters from the late Phil Vare containing important details of this racer's - and Scott's - TT history.
- The engine prefix is TT3 (RZ2513). The machine is offered with a V5C, not a V5.