Cinelli, for me, represents a golden-age of cycling. My first ‘real’ racing bike was equipped with one of Cinelli’s classic, beautifully curved quill stems and their signature alloy bars. That the winged ‘C’ had leapt from the pages of the cycling magazines’ coverage of the great races and riders to adorn my bike’s cockpit was a matter of no small excitement and pride for that younger self. So getting the opportunity to travel to Milano and spend the day with Gruppo S.r.L’s (The group name for the business marriage of Cinelli & Columbus tubing) Vice-President, Fabrizio Aghito, for the Always Riding folk was a bit of a dream come true.
The full article is right here, complete with the great camera work of the Grande-Tifoso himself, Angelo Giangregario. I’ve popped a couple of pics I took on the day, along with a few snippets of the story, here.
“Downing our espressi, we hop on a passing yellow tram at Porta Ticinese and rattle down Via Torino towards the city’s dead-centre. Through the morning Milanese rush hour rain, the iconic old streetcar’s dinging bell gently nudges through the commuters as they themselves weave in and out of cafes and tabacs, intent on their own requisite morning espresso, always imbibed in one, stood with that easy Italian elegance of attire and poise at high counters whilst scanning the day’s headlines on pink or white broadsheet…”
“The welcome is warm, a sign thoughtfully hung by the doorway heralds our arrival and ushers us into the office’s family atmosphere; the faceless urban hinterland is left behind at the threshold.
“Coffee?” Fabrizio offers
“Please – espresso?” I enquire
“We only have espresso…” Fabrizio smiles, humouring the out-of-towners…”
“Cinelli always wanted to put art into the sport. That has been one of the targets of Mr Antonio Colombo, Angelo’s son who now runs the company. Also to support rider’s communities, such as messengers. To push not only the bicycle as a sport but also the grass roots usage, the culture, the everyday usage. We aim to have our bicycle culture here at Cinelli not just coming down from the top of the sport but also to come up from the communities that ride our bikes”