Thursday, August 14, 2008
once in a while seeing an old bike will take me back to my 'youth'. someone brought in an old bike to the shop for a tuneup. it's an old legnano, the legendary brand of emilio bozzi. way back in the golden era of cycling (the 40's and 50's) six world championships were won on legnanos. this one is from the late 60's with nice campy parts of the day. it looks like it's been sitting in a garage for a few decades, so it's great that someone will be riding it again. seeing this old bike reminded me of when i first heard of the brand. it was 1988, i was 19 and racing with the local cornhusker cycling club and i was crazy for italian bikes. i hadn't been able to afford one yet, and reading about maurizio fondriest winning the world championships that year on one (making it seven for legnano) made me want a legnano really bad. like this old one above, maurizio's was metallic olive green with red pin-stripping. there was a huge controversy in that race, with bauer causing criquielion to crash as they sprinted for the line and fondriest most likely won because of it. the video shows a classic move in sprinting... go on the sheltered inside, but it can be risky. a few weeks later when the latest issue of winning magazine came out, i read about that sprint and studied the pictures over and over again. that is when i fell in love with that green color. i also remember reading that bauer needed a police escort to get out of belgium without harm. anyway... see what old italian bikes will do to me? i think i still have my old legnano cap from that year around somewhere, i'm gonna dig it out.