2013 reunion

2013 Reunion of

Brough Family & Brough Motorcycles

History and Pictures of George Brough and Brough Superior Motorcycles

Reunion of Brough Family and Brough Motorcycles, August 24, 2013

On Saturday afternoon, August 24, 2013, members of the Brough Family Organization and officers and riders of Brough Superior Motorcycles Ltd., met at the Bonneville Salt Flats Speedway in western Utah for a brief reunion to celebration Brough family history and world-class motorcycle racing.

According to Shane Brough, president of the Brough Family Organization (BFO), "Brough family members were warmly received by the Brough Superior Motorcycle Team, who went out of their way to show us the two motorcycles they had brought to Bonneville. All of our members really enjoyed visiting with Mark Upham, Henry Cole, Alan Cathcart, Eric Patterson and many others of the Brough Team." And Clayton Brough, BFO genealogist, stated, "One of the many highlights of this reunion was seeing Ken Brough of Idaho, who is a 'sixth cousin two-times removed' to George Brough [who originally made Brough Superior Motorcycles] sit on a Brough Superior Motorcycle. It was a tangible example of how family history can bring people together to better understand and experience the past and present at the same time."

Post-Reunion Events, August 25-29, 2013

Brough Superior "Baby Pendine" 750cc sets two new world records at Bonneville

(Most of this information has been quoted from the website of Brough Superior Motorcycles Ltd.):

August 25, 2013: Television presenter and all round good guy Henry Cole set a new record in the AMA 750AVF class riding a “Baby Pendine” 750cc Brough Superior motorcycle. This was Henry’s first time on the salt but he rode like a champ surviving a tank slapper (or speed wobble) and a breezy crosswind to record a best speed of 104.298 mph in the flying kilo and 103.941 mph in the flying mile. After waiting patiently in line for nearly three hours it was a fitting reward for the team and especially his crew chief Sam Lovegrove. Conditions were deteriorating as the day went on although the salt stayed hard, the wind made riding tricky. There was just enough time to get Henry’s bike through inspection and then he rode up to the line with seconds to spare. In spite of a headwind he was still able to record a flying mile at 95.619 mph for an average speed of 99.78 mph.

August 25, 2013: On Sunday, August 23, 2013, Alan Cathcart of the Brough Superior Team set a new record at Bonneville in both the F1M and AMA categories with the 750cc “Baby Pendine” machine. His first run was at 97.447 for the flying kilometre and 97.260 for the flying mile. Conditions were perfect in terms of humidity and temperature and the salt was good. He didn’t have to wait too long for the course to become clear for the return run. This time he flew through the clocks at 105.210 for the kilo and 105.004 for the mile. This created a new record speed of 101.3285 mph for the class.

August 27, 2013: After some testing yesterday and experimenting with gearing changes the Brough Superior "Baby Pendine" started to make some progress once it had been geared down. Team rider Alan Cathcart accelerated away from the mile zero on the mountain course and flew through the timing traps at 105.462 miles per hour over both the kilo and the mile. Not bad for what is essentially a 1930's design bike. Alan Cathcart pronounced himself satisfied but both he, Sam Lovegrove and Brough Superior CEO Mark Upham felt that there was more to come. Conditions are really good today with moderate sun causing a pleasant 69.4F temperature and 56% humidity. The salt is good.

August 28, 2013: There have been a number of technical difficulties associated with the Brough Superior 1150cc bike. On the first day a vibration problem was traced to a loose bolt in the front engine mounting. In spite of this the bike still recorded runs of 110 mph and 116 mph. The high ambient temperatures have made carburetor jetting changes inevitable. Changes were made to the trigger rotor in the Pazon electronic ignition system. Furthermore a change of riding style produced a serious discussion between rider and chief engineer. This produced a run of 121 mph which was the best this bike has achieved in this years Speed Trials. However, this was achieved by running flat out in fourth as the bike would not pull fifth or sixth gear. This suggests it may be slightly overgeared. A gearing change has been made to allow full use of the gear box. The first run today in 1350 APS-VG was 121.44 mph in the mile. The second run today was in 1350 AVF was 122.614 in the mile after gearing and removal. The course was briefly closed due to a camera that had fallen off one of the bikes but then while Eric Patterson was waiting to make a return run the sky darkened and few drops of rain began to fall and the wind picked up. Eric arrived at the course gate for the return run with seconds to spare and was immediately waved through by the officials. He gave the motorcycle full throttle and flew through the clocks at a speed of 126.075 mph for his best of the event in the 1350 ACF Class. Immediately afterwards there was a catastrophic rainstorm that completely flooded the course. After 15 minutes of high winds and heavy rain the salt flats had turned into a lake. Everyone was forced to shelter in their cars and vans as tents and shelters were blown in all directions. Many bikes had to be abandoned to the elements. Note: According to the U.S. National Weather Service, at 3:34 PM on August 28, 2013, the Wendover Airport, which is located about 10 miles west of the Bonneville Salt Flats Speedway, reported a thunderstorm wind gust (or microburst) of 79 mph.

August 29, 2013: The 2103 BIB Speed Trails held at the Bonneville Speedway were cancelled for the final day due to the inclement weather. A sudden cloudburst and associated high winds flooded the pits and race course on Wednesday afternoon (August 29th) causing the event to be abandoned on the final day. Virtually the whole lake bed was covered in at least an inch of water and it was much deeper in places--particularly around the boat ramp where competitors leave the lake bed. Long term competitors had been used to the odd rain storm before but had seldom seen the sort of flash flood experienced on Wednesday afternoon. After motorcycles have successfully completed record speed attempts at the Bonneville Speed Trails they have to go through a process of technical inspection to ensure that they comply with the regulations of that class. An important part of that process is stripping the engines and removing the cylinder heads so that the bore and stoke can be accurately measured and the correct capacity for the class confirmed. Not surprisingly both the team Brough Superiors [motorcycles] cleared this hurdle with ease although engineers Alastair Gibson and Sam Lovegrove had to work in half an inch of water left from the previous evening's storm.

During the afternoon of August 29th, representatives of the Brough Family Organization again visited Mark Upham and the Brough Superior Team at Bonneville as they were preparing to leave the Salt Flats. Shane Brough, BFO president, presented Mark Upham and Henry Cole with copies of the BFO book, The Global Brough Family, which details the genealogy and history of George Brough (1890-1970) and his Brough Superior Motorcycles.

September 2013: Report of Speed Records by Brough Superior Motorcycles Ltd:

In 2011 Brough Superior Motorcycles travelled to the famous Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah and set a new record with their 1150cc Pendine Model. In August 2013 the Brough Superior factory team returned with two motorcycles and set two FIM world and four AMA records to add to the one achieved two years previously.

The Brough Superior 1150cc machine known as "The Retro Brough" competed in the 1350-APS-VF class and achieved a speed of 110.454 mph in the first run and 116.882 mph on the return run to set an aggregate speed of 113.668 mph, a new AMA record. Later in the week, after further tuning of the bike and rider, the partial streamlining was removed, and competing this time in the 1350-A-VF class the motorcycle flew through the clocks at 122.614 mph in the first run and on the return run at 126.075 mph for an aggregate speed and new AMA record of 124.334. This last run was actually the very last by any motorcycle in the entire competition as immediately afterwards the sky opened and there was a catastrophic storm and downpour of rain. Rider Eric Patterson and chief engineer Alastair Gibson were very pleased with the performance of what is essentially an engine that is well under the maximum class size.

The Brough Superior 750cc machine nicknamed the "Baby Pendine" by the team and prepared by Brough Superior designer and engineer Sam Lovegrove was even more successful as it achieved two FIM world records and two AMA records. On the first day of the event it set two FIM and one AMA record in the 750 A-PS-VG classes. Ridden by famed motorcycle journalist Alan Cathcart the first run was very much a shakedown run at 97.260 mph over the flying mile. But he blitzed through the clocks at 105.004 mph on the return run for a new record average speed of 101.328. The team quickly turned the bike around and after patiently sitting in the sun for nearly three hours the teams third rider, TV presenter Henry Cole, riding in the 750 A-PS-VF class set a speed of 103.941 in the first run and 95.619 mph for the return creating a new AMA record of 99.780 mph. This bike ran smoothly and trouble free throughout the entire event and only required very minor changes to jetting, gearing and timing.

Brough Superior CEO Mark Upham pronounced himself satisfied with results achieved by the team. "We have attained the goals that we set for ourselves at the beginning of the competition and continued with the story that is Brough Superior. This is the beginning of a new era for Brough Superior and with planning in place for our new modern machines the future looks very exciting."

World Speed Records set by Brough Superior Motorcycles

at the Bonneville Salt Flats Speedway in 2011 and 2013

Brough Superior 1120 cc - "The Retro Brough" - Speed Records

Class 1350-A-VG: Average Speed: 124.98 mph

Rider: Eric Patterson

September 1, 2011: 124.98 mph

(This record still stands)

Class 1350 APS-VF: Average Speed: 113.668 mph

Rider: Eric Patterson

August 25, 2013: 110.454 mph, time 12.27, temp 71.5F, humidity 49%

August 25, 2013: 116.882 mph, time 14.21, temp 81.6F, humidity 29%

Class 1350-A-VF: Average Speed: 124.345 mph

Rider: Eric Patterson

August 28, 2013: 122.614 mph, time 15.14, temp 84.8F, humidity 33%

August 28, 2013: 126.075 mph, time 15.44, temp 84.8F, humidity 32%

Brough Superior 750 cc - "Baby Pendine" - Speed Records

Class FIM Mile 750: Average Speed: 101.3285 mph

Rider: Alan Cathcart

August 25, 2013: 97.447 mph

August 25, 2013: 105.210 mph

Class FIM Kilometer 750: Average Speed: 101.329 mph

Rider: Alan Cathcart

August 25, 2013: 97.447 mph

August 25, 2013: 105.210 mph

Class 750-A-PS-VG: Average Speed: 101.3285 mph

Rider: Alan Cathcart

August 25, 2013: 97.447 mph

August 25, 2013: 105.210 mph

Class AMA 750 A-VF: Average Speed: 99.78 mph

Rider: Henry Cole

August 25, 2013: 104.298 mph

August 25, 2013: 95.619 mph

Brough Superior now holds 7 records at Bonneville…

two of which are FIM World Records

Pre-Reunion Events, August 21, 2013

News Release about upcoming Reunion of Brough Family Members and Brough Motorcycles

During August 24-29, 2013, Brough Superior Motorcycles Ltd., of England, with offices in Austria, England, France and Jersey Island, will bring two Brough Superior motorcycles* to the Bonneville Salt Flats Speedway in western Utah for the purpose of setting several new world speed records for its class of motorcycle.

Between 1919 and 1940, George Brough, who was born in 1890 in Nottingham, England, made world famous "Brough Superior" motorcycles. Approximately 3,048 motorcycles of 19 different models were made during the 1920's and 1930's. In 1928, one of George's motorcycles reached the speed of 130.6 mph, then the world's fastest speed on a solo motorcycle. During the 1930's, Brough Superior motorcycles were called the "Rolls-Royce of motorcycles", and T.E. Lawrence, better known as "Lawrence of Arabia", was a famous rider of Brough motorcycles.** Today, television host and comedian, Jay Leno, owns several Brough Superior motorcycles, and the Brough Superior Club of England is one of the best known vintage motorcycle clubs in the world. Also, Brough Superior Motorcycles Ltd., (BSM) produces and sells newly built Brough Superior motorcycles worldwide.

In 1970, George Brough died, leaving behind one daughter (who died in 1975) and no grandchildren. However, he had several cousins in the United Kingdom and the United States, and some of their descendants are members of the Brough Family Organization (BFO). On Saturday afternoon, August 24th, a number of BFO officers and members will view two Brough Superior motorcycles that will attempt six world speed records for its class of motorcycle at the BUB Motorcycle Speed Trials at the Bonneville Salt Falts Speedway, and meet with and present BSM officials and riders with Brough flags and a book containing George Brough's family history.

According to Shane Brough, BFO President, "Motorcycle racing often brings people together, but this event will bring family and relatives together. It will be nice to meet and visit with people from two continents who have tangible items in common and also appreciated the value of family connections." And Mark Upham, BSM CEO has stated, "Both Brough Superior's carry the Brough family coat of arms. We are honored and proud to do so. Wish us good luck. We fight the elements in the name of the Brough family, Brough Superior, England and St George!"

*Mark Upham purchased the "Brough Superior name in 2008", and presently produces "better-than-original replicas of a number of Brough Superior models in limited numbers in Austria" for "approximately $150,000".

**George Brough personally visited the Bonneville Salt Flats in August 1949 to view Noel Pope's attempt at setting a new world motorcycle land speed record using a streamlined Brough Superior motorcycle called the "Silver Fish". Unfortunately, the motorcycle crashed shortly after reaching 150 mph. However, Noel Pope survived the crash.

Possible Future BFO and BSM Reunions

Sometime in the future members of the Brough Family Organization and officers and riders of Brough Superior Motorcycles (BSM) Ltd., are hoping to meet again at the Bonneville Salt Flats Speedway in western Utah for another brief reunion to celebrate Brough family history and world-class motorcycle racing. Both groups previously met in 2013. General information about BSM and the Bonneville Salt Flats Speedway can be found on the BSM website A, the BSM website B, the BSM Bonneville website, and the Bonneville Motorcycle Speed Trials website. (Note: The following newspaper article is interesting: Are the ailing Bonneville Salt Flats destined to be mud flats? , Deseret News, February 6, 2019)