Always a popular event, whatever the weather, the RealClassic South of England Show benefited from the spring sunshine to achieve what was probably the greatest ever attendance at the Ardingly Showground. Sunday traders were happy to accept outside jumble pitches and the visitors' bike park covered a huge area this time...
Inside, the main display offered the usual mix of regulars as well as some freshly restored bikes. The Stockman's building was taken on for the overspill and the Bantam Owners' Club managed to monopolise an entire long wall as a backdrop for the ever popular BSA lightweights.
A truly eclectic mix of bikes qualified for the various awards and as most were restorations, there were unique tales to relate. Bob Mitchell's mighty Royal Enfield V-twin, victorious in the pre-1950 class, was rescued from some sort of life as a chopper. It has since logged many miles of long-distance touring, in this country and overseas.
Barry Rapley's BSA M20 is something of a wolf in sheep's clothing. Tuning work has resulted in mid-70mph performance 'with more to come.' Anthony Curzon's Atlas Scrambler is possibly unique in this country. A 750 off-roader was, unsurprisingly, an American idea. Just one batch of 200 was made and all went trans-Atlantic, from where this example (number 3) was repatriated. Second in class, Trevor Drury's Royal Enfield Interceptor was also a rare American model returnee.
Paul Gough was pleased that his restoration of a 1948 Brockhouse Corgi merited 'Best Lightweight.' At the other sight of the scales, the 'Heavyweight' awards both went to Vincents. Don Hiscock happily accepted the RealClassic award. His 'Old Faithful' routinely attracts attention at local classic events as the BSA Golden Flash is fitted with a now-rare distinctive DMD Streamliner (dustbin) fairing.
A newly-created category this year was a competition for 'shiniest bike', sponsored by A1 Abrasives. Competition was keen, with evidence of some hours of expended elbow-grease, but John Marchant's Premier scooped the £50 award even though the nickel plating offered less 'bling' than some of the other chromed contenders. Another honour for a bike that has already appeared in films.
1. Bob Mitchell, 1937 Royal Enfield 1140 KX
2. Russell Webb, 1949 350 AJS Model 16C
1. Barry Rapley, 1956 BSA 500 M20
2. Cliff Ellis, 1956 Ariel VH 500
1. Anthony Curzon, 19634 Norton 750 Atlas Scrambler
2. Trevor Drury, 1969 Royal Enfield 750 Interceptor
1. Patrick Bullimore, 1973 Kawasaki 900 Z1
2. John Drew, 1970 Triumph Bonneville T120 650
1. Steve Elston, 1926 Norton Model 19 588
2. Andy Clewes, 1954 Norton Manx M30 500
1' Paul Miles, 1954 Vincent Egli 998
2. Michael Johnson, 1949 Vincent Comet 500
1. Paul Gough, 1948 Brockhouse Corgi Mk 1
2. Jeremy Frank, 1969 Honda 125 SS 125A
1. Dave Harding, 1975 Triumph Trident T160 750
2. Steve Whymark, 1914 Rover Sturmey Archer 2-3/4
1. Mick Gasson, 1978 Suzuki GS1000N 1000
2. J. Barrenger, 1959 Aer Macchi Ala Azzurra
Best Club Stand
Norton Owners Club, Surrey Branch
Real Classic Award
Don Hiscock, 1960 BSA A10 Golden Flash
John Marchant,1913 Premier 3-1/2hp 3-speed
Where legends come to life
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