Archive for January 10th, 2012

January 10, 2012

Bonneville…

So where did the Bonneville get its name? The salt flats in northwestern Utah were named after Benjamin Bonneville, a french born Army officer known for his expeditions to the intermountain region of the United States. Though mapped in the 1830’s it was a century later when its long flat hardpacked surface was seen as the optimum location for speed records. Then in 1956 a motorcycle racer by the name of Johnny Allen brought his Triumph twin 650cc powered “Texas Ceegar” streamliner and took it for a run on ‘the salt’ attaining a speed of 214.40 mph. The bike was built by Stormy Mangham and tuned by Jack Wilson and their savvy engineering was able to tromp the dominating NSU factory team. Triumph took this victory over the germans to heart and within a couple of years named their fast new twin-carb 650 the Bonneville. The rest is history!

Sadly the original Ceegar was severely damaged in the infamous fire at the British National Motorcycle Museum in Birmingham UK  in 2003 however it ashes were resurrected by a determined team in the US. After a brief sojourn to Bonneville it returned to its home in Birmingham.

Here’s our man on an unfaired speed machine obviously set-up for going top velocity in a straight line.

 

 Here he is with racing pal, Peaches Hainer; hardtails, high boots, big twins and a grin.