Record Breaking Vincent Black Shadow Is Top Seller At Bonhams Auction

Troy Siahaan
by Troy Siahaan

A fully restored, ex-works 1952 Vincent Black Shadow was the top selling motorcycle at the Bonhams auction, held at the International Classic Motorcycle Show at the Staffordshire County Showground on Sunday, April 28, selling for £113,500 (US $176,341 after premiums).

This Black Shadow was part of the factory’s bid to set a new 24-hour speed record at Montlhéry in France in May 1952. Mechanical troubles prevented that from happening, but the team still came away with eight records, including six hours at over 100 mph.

Other notable machines sold at the auction include a 1931 Brough Superior SS80 (£57,500, US $89,336 after premiums), a 1914 Indian Model F once owned by Steve McQueen (£32,200, US $50,028 after premiums), and over 30 motorcycles from the collection of the late Clifford Jones, many of which were racing motorcycles, sold for a total of over £175,000 (US $271,000). Elsewhere, two former Barry Sheene helmets sold for over £10,000 (US $15,000).

Ben Walker, Head of the Bonhams Motorcycle Department, said: “Once again our auction at the ‘International’ Classic proved to be exactly that, with interest from bidders from across the globe. “Record-breaking machines like the 1952 Vincent Black Shadow and the movie star charisma of Steve McQueen were among the draws for the crowd, and there was fierce competition for the Ducatis in the collection of the late Clifford Jones.”

To find out more about the auction, including a list of auctioned items and their winning price, visit

Photo courtesy of Bonhams
Photo credit: Double Red
Troy Siahaan
Troy Siahaan

Troy's been riding motorcycles and writing about them since 2006, getting his start at Rider Magazine. From there, he moved to Sport Rider Magazine before finally landing at in 2011. A lifelong gearhead who didn't fully immerse himself in motorcycles until his teenage years, Troy's interests have always been in technology, performance, and going fast. Naturally, racing was the perfect avenue to combine all three. Troy has been racing nearly as long as he's been riding and has competed at the AMA national level. He's also won multiple club races throughout the country, culminating in a Utah Sport Bike Association championship in 2011. He has been invited as a guest instructor for the Yamaha Champions Riding School, and when he's not out riding, he's either wrenching on bikes or watching MotoGP.

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