Mark your calendars for February 5 and 6, 2013, as those are the dates when Bonhams — one of the world’s largest auctioneers of fine arts and antiques — will put for sale two motorcycle collections which include some incredibly rare and historic machines.
The Grand Palais in Paris, France will play host to the auction, which includes the entire Garelli Grand Prix collection as its headliner. Founded in 1919, many famous Italian racers got their starts on Garelli motorcycles. Names like Ernesto Gnesa, Tazio Nuvolari and Achille Varzi can all trace their roots back to the Garelli brand.
Two dozen Garelli racing motorcycles are up for bidding, mainly from the company’s heyday in the early 1980s, where it won six consecutive world titles between 1982 and 1987, with some pre-war machines included as well. All the motorcycles, which were housed by their current owner in a private chapel, will be sold at no reserve.
Highlights from this collection include the 1963 50cc Monza world-record breaker, complete with its “dustbin” fairing, a 1983 Garelli 50cc racer which Eugenio Lazzerini rode to the world title that year, and a 1987 125cc twin which won Garelli’s sixth rider’s World Championships and fourth manufacturer’s title. Estimated worth of these machines range from $15,000 for the 1980s racers, all the way to $90,000 for the 1963 model.
Two non-Garelli motorcycles also up for auction include the Honda RC30 American World Superbike Champion Fred Merkel rode during the 1989/1990 season (estimated worth: $26,000 – $39,000) and a 1989 Yamaha TZ250 Frenchman Jean-Francois Balde competed on during his final season of Grand Prix racing (estimated worth: $4000 – $6500).
A second collection co-headlines the Bonham auction, and is comprised of 55 motorcycles all belonging to the late Claude Leselier. Highlights (and estimated values) from this collection include:
Final entries for the auction are still being accepted. For further information about either of these collections, or anything else related to this auction, email firstname.lastname@example.org.