1928 Road Racer ‘The Sporting Sunbeam’

Do not dissipate your energy in pushing

a cheap bicycle along the country roads.

Ride a Sunbeam and enjoy the scenery

– Sunbeam advert for The R.R Sporting Sunbeam

1928 Road Racer ‘The Sporting Sunbeam’ 

Frame No 153108

20″ Frame

26″ Wheels

Single Speed ‘Time Trial’ bicycle

Quick Release Wheels

‘Flip Flop’ Rear Wheel – Single Speed Freewheel or Fixed Wheel

Resillion Brakes

Constrictor handlebar grips

Bluemells Lightweight Mudguards

Reversible Handlebars

Brooks B17 saddle (original option)

This charming single speed road racing bicycle was owned by one person since 1928, until it was found by my friend in 2011.


It had been in storage since the 1960s, when the owner stopped riding it. In the thirties, he rode it to timed events, where he removed the Bluemells plastic mudguards, turned the rear wheel around into fixed gear position, turned the handlebars over into racing style, and rode it against the clock.

After the event, the bike could be ridden home again with rear wheel back in freewheel position.

This machine is in excellent original unrestored condition, with gold coach-lining still showing on its black paint, as well as Sunbeam marque transfer on the headstock and ‘The Sporting Sunbeam’ transfer on the crossbar (above).

It’s fitted with a good Brooks B17 saddle, front and rear lights (untested), and inflator pump.

There has been a repair to the rear mudguard.

It recently had new tyres and inner tubes.

This is a practical 1920s lightweight vintage bicycle that was a top quality machine in its day – 84 years ago – and is ready to see faithful service again.


The ‘R.R. Sporting Sunbeam’ made its debut in 1928, as you can see in the catalogue entry below.

In the 1928 Olympics – held in The Netherlands – Jack Middleton rode a Sunbeam Road Racer unofficially provided by the company. The British team came second in the team event.

According to the book ‘Sunbeam Cycles’: This new model was the first real attempt by Sunbeam to appeal to the club cyclist. As can be seen, the specification was similar to that whoch one could find in any of the catalogues produced by the small firms of that period; but the price of £12 was much higher than those firms were charging. Although it appeared in the 1928 catalogue, it was on sale in 1927 …there was a choice of saddle – Terry CTC or Brooks B17.