Tempted to ride the TT on a Tickle?

The Manx Norton is one of the most famous racing machines in British motorcycle history – but there are some lesser-known variants, such as this Manx T5 produced by John Tickle in the early 1970s…

Back in the 1930s, Norton’s racing engineer began developing a single-cylinder motorcycle, one that would go on to become forever linked with Isle of Man TT and the Manx Grand Prix due to its popularity with competitors. The ‘Manx’ name was applied to the company’s post-War racing model, which flourished in the hands of both factory and privateer riders. But by 1969, its once-pioneering technology was seen as somewhat antiquated, and then-owner Colin Seeley sold the name and technology rights to his friend, John Tickle. 

End of an era

Though Tickle’s subsequent tinkerings addressed the Manx’s shortfalls (mainly by reducing weight and stiffening the frame), the market had entered a new chapter – and the resulting lack of demand makes the Tickle Manx a rare sight on the market today. This early-70s example – rebuilt using the frame of one and the engine of another - is soon to be auctioned by Bonhams carrying an estimate of £18,000 - 25,000. Surely one to tickle the fancy of a few collectors out there? 

Photos: Bonhams

You can find numerous classic motorcycles for sale in the Classic Driver Market.