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Nero, Super Nero & Ariel Arrow

By spikemoz
These three motorcycles are priceless national treasures, which were designed, built and ridden by the Nottingham born engineer George Brown, assisted by his brother Cliff. The brothers left Nottingham in the early 1930s to work for the Vincent HRD Company in Stevenage. In the following years, George became an accomplished works rider for Vincent HRD, firstly on a 500cc series A Comet and later on a 1000cc Rapide knicknamed Gunga Din. After a serious accident, Geroge decided to leave Vincent and concentrate on sprinting and speed record attempts. When he retired, he held 24 world speed records, all on these three bikes. From left to right they are an Ariel Arrow 250cc two cylinder two stroke given by Ariel to George and Cliff to modify for record breaking, a modified Vincent 1000cc Rapide he named Nero and a supercharged development of Nero, which he called Super Nero.

For a full history of George, Cliff and these bikes, there is an excellent web site called If you do visit this site select their photo' gallery and put Nero in the search engine, to see a page with some wonderful historic pictures.

The Ariel Arrow

These images are left and right threequarter rear shots of Nero. If you look closely, you can see where George and Cliff have drilled out the centres of all the bolts and pins as well as the sprockets and castings in order to reduce the weight of the bike.

These are left and right rear threequarter views of Super Nero. The supercharger can be clearly seen in the left hand shot.

These two machines are left to right, a late model Vincent 1000cc Rapide and the other is a 1000cc HRD Rapide which is the base model for the racer Gunga Din.


Tags: Transport Nero Flash and lighting National motorcycle museum Vincent hrd George and cliff brown Super nero Ariel arrow Sports and action

Voters: imagio, Jestertheclown, G3 and 12 more

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imagio 12 12 1 England
31 Jan 2009 12:24AM
Excellent series Spike


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TyChee Plus
14 275 1 United States
31 Jan 2009 1:25AM
I wonder what corning is like with that squared off rear tire. But this looks like it could have been a drag-race bike. Nice set of shots.
spikemoz 12 2
31 Jan 2009 1:54AM
Sorry Ty, I'd forgotten we're the only two nationalities separated by the same language! Wink

Over here drag racing used to be called sprinting.

rogerJ 14 16 United Kingdom
31 Jan 2009 8:26AM
love the shots. George used to live next door to me in Luton untill he moved to stevenage and igot all my bikes from him
Ray42 11 3 England
31 Jan 2009 8:47AM
Nice set and interesting write up
spikemoz 12 2
31 Jan 2009 11:18AM
Thanks for the votes and comments, much appreciated.

Hi Roger,
WOW! George as a next door neighbour. Did you manage to see these bikes during their various evolutionary stages?

Rock Plus
16 10 2 England
1 Feb 2009 8:21PM
I bought my first bike, a Golden Arrow , from George Brown in Stevenage Old Townin in 1962. It cost just over 100 .

Brings back many happy memories and the three lads I used to ride with are still in very close contact.


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