Long Legged Vincent

By Kevin Ash - 16/05/2011

Bonhams is to auction what is surely one of the highest mileage motorcycles in existence.

The 1955 Vincent Black Prince of Stuart Jenkinson has covered a staggering 721,703 miles (1,161,468km) since he bought the 998cc machine new 56 years ago, from St Andrew‘s Motors in Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

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Stuart used the machine for commuting and long distance holidays originally, then in 1980 it became the lead bike for his business running guided motorcycle tours throughout Europe, travelling as far as Montenegro, Finland, Albania and Norway. The list includes more than 40 tours to Greece at over 3,000 miles a time, and Stuart says he regularly cruised for long stretches at 100mph. The bike‘s top speed (when new...) is 120mph.

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The bike has had only three engine rebuilds, although Stuart has modified the fairing to incorporate twin headlights, fitted a new upper frame and a larger four gallon tank from a Series C Vincent. The electrical system has been upgraded while a pair of 1980s twin piston Brembo callipers and discs have been fitted to modernise the stopping performance. The bike also has Koni shock absorbers.

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It‘s not easy selling it after all this time: “As any long term owner of a bike or car will understand, selling Vinnylonglegs after 56 years and almost three quarters of a million miles is going to be a serious wrench. I'll just have to make do now with the memories of all our wonderful trips.”

The auction will take place at the International Motorcycle Show in Staffordshire on April 24. The pre-sale estimate is £35,000- £40,000.

For more information, see Bonhams Motorcycles

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