As cars moved toward the end of the auction block this past week at Dana Mecum’s 31st annual Original Spring Classic sale in Indianapolis, they passed in front of a 1912 Indian “Big Base” 8-valve board-track racing motorcycle. The vintage bike was there to remind everyone that there’s more to come — and very soon — for the Mecum auctioneers.
On June 1-2, Mecum Auctions stages its second late-spring motorcycle sale in Las Vegas, where around 600 collector two-wheelers will be offered up for bidding at the South Point hotel and casino.
The following weekend, June 8-9, Mecum moves on to Denver for its annual collector car auction in the Mile-High City, and then it’s on to Portland, Oregon, for another collector car sale June 22-23. Both the Denver and Portland sales should parade around 600 vehicles across the block.
Through the acquisition of MidAmerica Auctions, Mecum has staged motorcycle sales each January in Las Vegas for 27 years. Those sales have become so successful that last year, a spring sale was added to the calendar and the experiment was so successful — $4.4 million in sales with an 80 percent sell-through, that a similar sale has been scheduled for early June this year.
The sale this year will feature an auction preview event May 31 featuring four motorcycle-racing stars, Mecum said, with Kenny Roberts, Eddie Lawson, Don “Bubba” Shobert and Brad Lackey on stage at 4 p.m. to share stories about their careers (between them they have 18 national and world championships) and to take part in a question-and-answer session.
Not only will that quartet be there, but some of the machines they raced to those championships will be on display.
Speaking of two-wheeled machines, among the 600 on the docket are 100 motorcycles from the Jim Lattin Collection. Lattin, now in his 80s, was president of the Southern California Timing Association and chairman of the Bonneville Nationals Board. Among his bikes going to the sale are a 1905 Iver Johnson, three early Shaws, a 1914 Harley-Davidson Privateers Single racer, 1914 Comet Twin racer, 1915 Justin Pirate racer, concours-winning 1915 Indian Twin Engine factory racer originally built for “Cannonball” Baker, various machines from the 1940s forward, as well as a 1887 High-Wheel bicycle, and a wooden hobby horse built by Von Dutch.
Another 21 motorcycles are going to auction from the Best of Show Collection. Primarily British bikes, though with American-made Cushman, Allstate and Doodlebugs as well, the bikes come from a private collection and have been restored by noted professionals who specialize in certain marques, Mecum said.
Also on the Docket are motorcycles from the Tim Walker Collection, the John McNulty Collection and the Estate of RJ Casale.
Featured at Denver are the Linden and Rick Holland Collections. The Linden collection includes a dozen vehicles, all of the high-performance Chevrolets except for a 1966 Pontiac GTO, 1950 Mercury custom and a 1966 Ford Ranch Wagon.
Colorado-based businessman Rick Holland sold 39 cars at Mecum’s Denver auction in 2016 but is back with 30 more. Several are street rods, including a ’32 Ford 5-window coupe, ’34 Ford sedan and ’39 Chevrolet coupe.
The Denver auction is scheduled for the Colorado Convention Center.
Featured at the auction in the Portland Expo Center are street rods — ’32 Ford roadster and ’32 Ford 3-window coupe — a 1964 Chevrolet Impala 409, 1968 Chevrolet Camaro RS/SS, 1968 Dodge Charger R/T, 1967 Ford Mustang convertible, and an unrestored 1961 Chrysler 300G hardtop being offered at no reserve. The Chrysler retains its original Cross Ram, dual-4-barrel V8 and has factory air conditioning, a rare option in the day.
The 300G originally was delivered to a dealership in North Dakota, was retained by the dealer and his wife for 42 years, has been driven only 63,880 miles and is being consigned to the sale by its second owner, according to Mecum.
To see the dockets for all three auctions, visit the Mecum website.