The Vintagent Selects: A collection of our favorite films by artists around the world.

Black Lightning or Grey Flash? An owner chooses (2019)

Run Time: 2:03
Director: David Lancaster
Produced by: Gerry Jenkinson, James Salter
Filmed by: Steve Read
Executive Producers: JP Davidson and Peter Bender
Key cast: Nicolas Dourassoff


David Lancaster: A former director on BBC’s Top Gear, and one-time motoring editor of The Times (London), David took his first journey on a Vincent aged seven – on the back of his father’s Black Prince to the Lion Rally in Belgium. A year later, the pair rode from west London to the FIM Rally in Austria.

David, with co-producer Gerry Jenkinson, began work on SpeedisExpensive four years ago. Since then, they have tracked down the remaining 16 men and women who built the bikes at the Stevenage factory, have overseen the restoration of the Vincent family’s 16 mm film archive and interviewed Jay Leno, John Surtees, record-setter Mary Dickerson and filmed the Jack Ehret Black Lightning, back on its record-setting road.

David owns and rides the same 1947 Series B Rapide his father owned during the 1950s. His brother owns their father’s Black Prince.


Here’s a question: what’s rarer than a Vincent 1000cc Black Lightning? Answer: the factory’s racing 500cc Grey Flash.

It’s the model a young Vincent apprentice called John Surtees scored his first victories on – a light, fast, beautiful motorcycle whose early promise was cut short.

In the latest preview of the forthcoming documentary SpeedisExpensive, the production crew meet a guy who’s had both a Lightning and Flash in his garage. So, which is his favourite?