Wednesday, 12 October 2011

George Brown, Nero And Super Nero

Imagine, having had a successful lifetime of motorcycles and motorcycle racing, top results in  the TT and major meetings, miles of factory test riding and development of some of the fastest production motorcycles. Then, in middle age to wrestle with time and distance, becoming a (motorcycle) household name in sprinting and record breaking. And right at the pinnacle of record breaking success to be told "55! you are too old to obtain world records".
That was the story for George Brown, lucky for all who believed in him, he didn't take "no" for an answer.

George and his brother Cliff, were two gifted and intuitive engineers who, through the 50's 60's and early 70's,  single mindedly built very fine world beating Vincent specials. .

Cliff wrote a book of their exciting and creative time together, George Brown: Sprint Superstar, published by Haynes ISBN 0 85429 295 0.
So often I read this through, Cliff's words were a definite prompt toward building my own sprint bike and to hopefully return to it when times become a little quieter!

There is a picture on the back cover of the book that must perfectly illustrate a single minded team and their search for just one more world record. George is sitting on Nero (with sidecar) on a huge open runway, perspective and vanishing points reach out and pull you into the water ridden, dawn breaking scene of waiting, alone...

I took the following photographs of Nero and Super Nero at North Weald during a classic sprint in the late 80's. Pure and purposeful racing machine.

1 comment:

  1. Eric, I haven't read the book but he must mention Pat Barrat who used to mechanic for GB and held a few sprint records himself on a Vincent outfit. Pat is still alive and lucid, I have been trying to get publications to talk to him as he is prepared to tell his tales to anybody that's interested. Strangely enough no-one wants to take the opportunity of recording this history!!!!!!!!