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Tuesday 31 January 2023

Bigtwin Bikeshow & Expo

29th Bigtwin Bikeshow & Expo 

November 4-6, 2022

Houten/Utrecht, The Netherlands

Words & Pictures by Onno Wieringa, Madness Photography

Close to the center of the Netherlands, the Bigtwin Show continued its post-Covid comeback with a strong visitor attendance, great vendor support, including Zodiac International, and "over 120 of the best and coolest custom bikes in the show," said bike show manager Onno Wieringa of Madness Photography and AMD World Championship fame.

The 29th edition of the Bigtwin Bikeshow & Expo - one of Europe's oldest and most respected custom engineering showcases - featured two stages with presentations, live music, tattoo artists at work and, yes, still as popular as ever, the famous Bigtwin striptease shows.

Best In Show

Completely handbuilt 'M00' grass track racer, built by Jordan Hicks (Solidworks) and Larry Houghton (Lamb Engineering in the UK). Prizes included a TomTom Rider 550SE Special Edition, extra large handmade trophy by Phoenix, and a € 1,000 Zodiac voucher.

Café Racer Winner - Triton, Theo van der Ven

Filling the halls right down to the last available square inch, vendor booths included big names on the Dutch market such as Zodiac, VG Classic Frames & Parts, Jekill and Hyde, BMW, Triumph and Indian.

Custom bike builders showed their craftsmanship in the Chopper Zone, a Café Racer zone, and, shining like diamonds, the custom bikes were on display in both halls, boosting booth traffic and keeping the flame burning brightly - competing for prizes, honor and glory! 

Classics Winner - H-D WL, Robby Prinsen

Out of the more than 120 motorcycles the jury chose the best three in each class, based on a range of criteria such as detailing, finish, engineering and fabrication, innovations, the overall design line and concept, the paint and chrome work, wiring and, above all, the craftsmanship, self-made parts designs and innovation - as the event's conceptual sponsor Bigtwin Magazine is itself mainly focused on self-built custom motorcycles. 

The Bigtwin Bikeshow & Expo has industry-wide recognition as an aficionado's nexus where respect and admiration for all the participating builders runs deep - both for the domestic Dutch custom bike building community and the many international builders, who have a regular spot in their calendars for a show that is a genuine international shop window. 

The 29th edition in November 2022 saw further evidence that the pandemic is (mostly) in the rear-view mirror, at least in terms of its apparent severity, and the effect it has had on the international custom market, with strong Europe-wide international participation, including entries from Sweden, Norway, England, Belgium, Spain, Switzerland, France and Italy. 

There were six classes in 2022 - Classics, Café Racers/Trackers, Choppers/Bobbers, Custom Modified, Clubstyle and Freestyle. As in prior years, the main sponsor was Zodiac International with € 10,000 worth of vouchers.

Chopper/Bobber Winners - Mark van der Kwaak and Aad Heemskerk

Freestyle Winner - H-D Panhead, Stephane Grand (CH)

The 2nd and 3rd place prize winners came on the stage without their bikes to collect their prizes. In order to prove that they were genuine "runners," the class-winning bikes had to brave the notorious "Chicken Run" from the Winner's Circle to the podium. If the engine didn't start, the infamous Chicken came to help push the bike up - to the 'Chicken Song'! 

The 'cluck of shame' befell Theo van der Ven, whose gorgeous Triton Café Racer wouldn't start until it had been pushed onto the stage, and Che, winner of the Clubstyle Class, was so overwhelmed with the emotion of winning a prize that he forgot to bring his keys!

Save the date - now back in full force, the 30th anniversary Bigtwin Bikeshow is slated for the same Houten Expo facility on November 2-5, 2023.

Clubstyle Winner - H-D FXR, Che

Custom Modified Winner - Dolbagg H-D Sportster Bagger from Marc Torrent (CH)