Date: 22 March, 2015
Location: National Motor Museum, Beaulieu, Brockenhurst, Hampshire SO42 7ZN
As the leading event for veteran motorcycles dating back to before 1915 - this year’s event will be the first that every bike will be a minimum of 100 years old.
Yes, the arrestingly nostalgic Sunbeam Motorcycle Club (MMC) stages the 76th edition of its Pioneer Run this weekend.
What’s it all about?
The iconic vintage bike event returns on Sunday, March 22.
Its 75.6km (47-mile) route from Epsom’s Tattenham Corner to Brighton seafront’s Madeira Drive brings together the planet’s largest gathering of classic bikes, quadricycles, sidecars and solos.
What’s happening this year?
A total of over 370 participants across a minimum of 58 different nations are expected to grace the event.
Martyn Raybould, business development executive at Footman James will certainly be in attendance.
Participants or spectators can buy event programmes, which are being sold at important points across the route – while finishers will get a special commemorative medal.
Entrants will be divided into the following three categories:
- Class C: covering machines built from 1910-14
- Class B: bikes built from 1905-09
- Class A: bikes built pre-1905
Key times for this year’s event:
- 8am: Tatternhoe Corner start
- 10am: the first motorcyclists are likely to cross the Madeira Drive finishing line
- 2pm: presentation of awards in the Sunbeam MCC marquee
This year’s entrants will be following in the tyre tracks of many famous previous participants.
- Prince Michael of Kent: The Queen’s cousin.
- Murray Walker: Now in his 90s, the legendary motor racing commentator liked to ride fast machines as well as talk about them.
- Jon Pertwee: The third Doctor Who’s love of swift vehicles was apparent in episodes involving high-speed chases.
- John Surtees: The only man to have won a world championship on four and two wheels.
- Geoff Duke: Duke is a five-time world motorcycle champion (across 350cc and 500cc versions), all of his wins coming in the 1950s.
Pioneer Run: key dates
- 1924: Sunbeam MCC launches
- 1930: The first Run is staged - at Surrey’s Croydon Aerodrome
- 1954: The Run had a one-off launch from Westminster
- 2001: Foot and mouth disease halted this year’s event
- 2013: Bad weather put paid to the Run
Entries have closed for this year, but spectators are still welcome.
If you can’t wait to enter next year’s event, then why not join Sunbeam MCC in the meantime to whet your appetite?
This 91-year-old club welcomes enthusiasts and riders of all bikes, not just Sunbeams. It caters for historic biking fans and restoration enthusiasts, working towards helping people enjoy and preserve gorgeous pre-1940s motorbikes.
Sunbeam MCC puts on social and riding events for every kind of bikes from this era. It also hosts off-road bike trials, both for modern models and those built before 1965.
It costs £19 to join, including a one-off initial registration fee.