Nico Bakker stepped into the professional motorcycle world as a road racer, and a pretty talented one at that. At the start of the 1970’s, Bakker had become fed up with the current state of race bikes and the direction manufacturers were going in with their development, seeking more and more powerful engines above all else. Bakker felt that engines weren’t the problem, it was the bike’s handling, or lack of it due to the frame’s inability to compensate for the power of the engine. This lead to Bakker building his own chassis which he intended to personally race with.
Bakker’s inaugural frame was a work of art, built to the highest possible standards and scrutinized down to the millimeter. Only the finest materials were used and when he was done he took it racing. Immediately, other racers saw Bakker’s chassis and the performance it allowed – based on his markedly better race results – and fellow privateers and team owners began soliciting Bakker to build them one of his instantly-legendary frames.
Initially, Bakker built his frames using steel tubing in traditional structures the big manufacturers were utilizing at the time, but pretty quickly Bakker found a clever way of rearranging the construction of a race chassis to optimize the performance of his frames.
Along the way Nico Bakker had given up racing to pursue frame construction full time, starting his company: Bakker Framebouw, a business still in existence today. Bakker Framebouw built a chassis for bikes ranging from 1/20th-liter power-plants on the way up to full liter engines. By the mid 1970’s the Dutch chassis producer was filling orders from some important names in the motorcycle racing world such as Giacomo Agostini (and Phil Read, Cecotto, Kork Ballington, Jack Middelburg). Bakker’s products spoke for themselves, and almost overnight a sensational demand had been created for these then-cutting-edge frames.
Bakker Framebouw eventually started offerings kits for customers to swap their bike’s engine into the trick high-performance frame. The company also sold both road and race versions, with the race versions often boasting some seriously impressive components for the era such as a mono-shock on a Morbidelli 125cc. Kits were also available for larger four-cylinder Japanese motors like the Honda 750 and 950cc; Kawasaki 900 and 1000cc; Suzuki 750 and 1100cc. The Bakker Yamaha TZ frames were also pretty legendary, taking an already outstanding engine and wrapping it in a chassis capable of matching its performance.
Bakker also produced remarkable race frames for the Rotax 250 and Cagiva 500 race engines. While both racers utilized a mono-shock, the Cagiva 500 used a mono-shock system that was mounted horizontally under the crankcase which was an innovative design at the time. Bakker would eventually go also begin instructing exhaust systems, plus a myriad of other projects of all kinds. One of said projects was a mid 1990’s lightweight racer project that borrowed its frame geometry from Max Biaggi’s Factory Aprilia 250GP machine.
That project is now up for sale, and damn is it cool. I love super single racers but this is easily my favorite one I’ve ever seen. The Nico Bakker-built Aprilia 250-inspired frame is wrapped around a single-cylinder powerplant that makes 75hp. The roadrace thumper has been fitted with a Carillo rod, MVS Race Engineering cylinder head, race cam, twin Mikuni RS38 carbs with TPS sensor, full titanium exhaust by MVS Race Engineering, titanium silencers, Denso CBR-929 COP, electric water pump, new radiator and silicone hoses.
As much of a beast as this super single racer’s engine is, the parts list is a huge part of what makes this example such a highly competent racer. In fact, the previous two owners of this very bike were three-time European Supermono champion Mike Velthuijzen and three-time Dutch Supermono champion Lex van Dijk. This 1997 Bakker-built super single boasts an Ignitech TCIP4 programmable ignition with quick-shifter, WP forks and steering damper, Technoflex rear shock, new IRC radial brake pump, Brembo HRC brakes connected via new HEL brake lines, and new D.I.D 520ERS2 chain. The electrics on this example are powered by a new LiFePO4 4S battery, plus superseal connectors, and an MV Agusta F4 switch unit.
The fairing on this super sexy super single is much more than your average SuSing (Super Single) kit bodywork. A 2003 Yamaha TZ250 fairing was fitted to the custom Bakker frame, and a Honda NSF250 seat fairing was fixed to the subframe. A collection of titanium and aluminum fasteners have been used throughout, including on the custom aluminum fuel tank. A top-shelf Techtronics Race dash provides the pilot with vital data, and the entire build is sitting atop a set of brand new Dunlop Sportmax Qualifier 2 tires.
This bike’s sale also includes a generous amount of extra parts and other race goodies including a spare Marvic magnesium three spoke rear wheel, a non-cush drive hub, eight extra aluminum rear-sprockets (all with different gearing), a pair of extra rear springs, an extra steering stem, a mount for a Honeywell HALL-sensor and Denso smart COP, and a lot of other small knickknacks. Most super single racers are pretty special. Because they’re almost all kits, their builders will often times go the distance and add a handful of upgrades to the machine and project. But this particular SuSing example is the creme-de-la-creme of super single racers. A high-performance one-off race machine built by a literal legend. Plus, how often do you see a super single with a single sided swing arm? C’mon!
You can find this 1997 Nico Bakker Supermono for sale here on RaceBikeMart in Sweden with a price of $14,800.