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Japanese and Italian Motorcycles at Bonhams

Tuesday, August 9, 2011
1971 Laverda 750SFC
The 1971 Laverda 750SFC is one of the most sought after post-war Italian motorcycles and will be auctioned at Bonhams on October 16th 2011.
A wonderful selection of classic Italian and Japanese motorcycles are among the highlights of Bonhams annual sale at the Classic Motorcycle Mechanics Show in Stafford on 16th October 2011.

The 1979 Ducati 864cc Mike Hailwood Replica in the auction is offered for sale by its original owner and has covered fewer than 23,000 miles from new. A landmark model that kept Ducati afloat during the 1980s, the Hailwood Replica owes its existence to Mike’s legendary Isle of Man TT comeback victory in the 1978 Production Race riding an ex-works NCR bike entered and prepared by Manchester-based Ducati dealer, Sports Motor Cycles. Unrestored, the Ducati comes with full history from new (estimate £7,000 – 10,000).

Another Italian thoroughbred, but even rarer, the 250cc Villa V4 on offer is a faithful replica of Francesco Villa’s doomed Grand Prix racer of 1969, which was rendered obsolete by the FIM’s rule change limiting the class to a maximum of two cylinders. Constructed by an ex-Villa employee using many genuine original parts, the Villa was completed in 2008 and has been tested by Alan Cathcart for ‘Classic Racer’ magazine (£25,000 – 34,000).

The Laverda 750SFC production racer is one of the most sought after of post-war Italian motorcycles and the 1971 model in the sale was originally campaigned by the UK importers, Slater Brothers. Known as ‘Leaping Lena’, the Laverda was track tested at Silverstone in 1971 by Ray Knight for Motorcyclist Illustrated magazine. Its first private owner was the late Jim Berkheimer, founding president of the Laverda Owners Club. The machine passed to the current owner in 1975 (£35,000-40,000).

No Stafford October sale would be complete without a healthy compliment of Japanese motorcycles and this year’s line-up is a headed by an important collection of wonderfully restored Kawasaki’s including: 1969 Kawasaki 498cc H1 (£8,000-10,000), 1973 Kawasaki 746cc Z2 (£8,000-10,000), 1973 Kawasaki 900cc Z1 (£10,000-12,000), 1974 Kawasaki 903cc Z1A (£7,000-9,000) and 1975 Kawasaki 903cc Z1B (£7,000-9,000).

Ben Walker, Head of Motorcycles at Bonhams, comments, “These machines are firmly in keeping with the ethos of the Classic Motorcycle Mechanics Show as well as reflecting the growing interest and enthusiasm in machines of the 60s and 70s.” 
 
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