Yamaha's “Yard Built” program works with custom builders worldwide for fresh takes on the company's Sport Heritage range of motorcycles. The latest collaboration, with Belgian builder Fred 'Krugger' Bertrand, salutes MotoGP history with a Yamaha SR400 special.
Bertrand’s inspiration came from close friend Bernard Ansiau, who happens to be a MotoGP mechanic for arguably the greatest rider of all time, Valentino Rossi. He also prepared the racing machines for such Yamaha greats as Wayne Rainey, Kenny Roberts, Randy Mamola and Norick Abe. Fred and Bernard agreed to use the humble Yamaha SR400 as the base, and recognize the racing spirit of the 1970s in a tribute to the Yamaha TZ machines.
"This Yard Built really is a unique piece of art," said Yamaha Motor Europe Marketing Coordinator Cristian Barelli. “It's such a beautiful bike and the longer and closer you look at it the more detail you find to enjoy. You wouldn't normally associate the SR400 with MotoGP racing, but this build is as genuine and authentic as it's possible to get, a real Yard Built special!"
Given the inspiration of MotoGP racing, the little SR400's engine gets some serious work, most noticeably with a beautiful Aisin 300 supercharger with custom plenum chamber. A one-off stainless steel exhaust system is complemented by an S&S 48mm carburetor in place of the fuel injection system. The beautifully polished front fork has been lowered and balanced with a set of Fox shocks at the rear. The Dunlop K81s are a nod to the first tire to lap the Isle of Man TT course at over 100mph.
There are almost too many custom details to mention as Fred's obsession with perfection spills across the SR400. Motogadget speedo, switches and grips sit behind a tiny custom cowl at the front above a modified top triple clamp and custom handlebars. The Beringer brakes and clutch add some beef to match the supercharged engine. The standard SR400 fuel tank has been kept, but narrowed and lengthened, and a custom tail unit hides all the electrical components.
A stunning interpretation of the Yamaha Speedblock in blue and white completes the color scheme, with the names of all the riders in Bernard's racing career incorporated in the design. Under the back seat the eagle-eyed will also spot a small light-hearted homage to the Doctor himself. For more information on Krugger visit www.krugger.net