Ekins' Triumph Jumps to Auction World Record at Spring Stafford Sale

A 1962 Triumph 649cc TR6SS ridden by Bud Ekins, the American bike racer who performed the famous jump as stunt-double for Steve McQueen in The Great Escape, was one of the star lots of this weekend's Bonhams Spring Stafford Sale, achieving a world record auction price of £97,750 – over three times its top estimate.

This outstandingly original Trophy model, which was the subject of competitive bidding across two continents and bought by an American bidder, helped Ekins, who was also a friend of Steve McQueen, win a gold medal in the 1962 International Six Days Trial.

Coventry Eagle Flying High

Another record-breaker this weekend was a 1925 Coventry Eagle 981cc Flying-8, a rare example of a vintage overhead valve V-Twin, which set a new auction record for the marque, achieving an impressive £218,500. After a three-way bidding battle, the machine was bought by a lady bidder in the room at the 39th Carole Nash International Classic MotorCycle Show and will join a renowned collection.

A third world record was set for a 1935 Vincent-HRD 498cc Series-A Comet which sold for £97,750 to a bidder in the room. This rare Series-A, one of only a few 'intermediate sump' types, was totally restored in 2015 by famed Vincent-HRD restorer Glyn Johnson and has been on display ever since.

The performance of this top-selling trio, as well an impressive total sale rate of 92 per cent and a total of £3,892,397, resulted in an all-time record sale for Bonhams Collectors' Motorcycle Department.

James Stensel, Head of Bonhams Collectors' Motorcycles, said: "What an incredible weekend! We are thrilled with the results of this sale, not only breaking our own auction record but also achieving three world auction records for individual marques and models.

This sale, our largest to date, with over 400 collectors' motorcycles offered, proves that machines with fantastic history, originality and pedigree will always achieve record prices."
Other highlights of this weekend's sale include:

• A strong performance from a quartet of pre-war Brough Superiors, led by the 'ultimate' vintage machine, a 1926 Brough Superior 986CC SS100 Alpine Grand Sports which sold for £207,000.

• The weekend's most surprising result achieved by an unrestored 1949 Parkin-Vincent 998CC Black Shadow which competed in the 1985 Manx Grand Prix and today realised £62,100.

The Bonhams two-day sale has represented the A-Z of motorcycling, offering more than 100 individual marques and 200 lots of motorcycle spares and associated memorabilia, reflecting the strength of the classic motorcycle market.

Malcolm Barber, Co-Chairman of Bonhams and auctioneer for the sale, said:
"The Bonhams team has been associated with the Classic Motorcycle Show for the last 35 years. In this time, the Stafford sales have grown exponentially, particularly in recent years, demonstrating the continuing popularity of classic motorcycles around the globe. This weekend's sale has been another truly memorable auction."

The Bonhams Collectors' Motorcycles team will return to Stafford for the Autumn sale on 19-20 October at The Classic Motorcycle Mechanics Show and is now inviting exciting entries for consignment. Contact the team on +44 (0) 20 8963 2817 or
[email protected].


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