Bianchi enjoys a very special spot in cycling. The popularity of the bikes with the eagle of the Royal house of Savoy on the head tube is almost second to none even after 137 years. Perhaps it's the deepest heritage of all existing brands, perhaps the unmistakable celeste paintjob or the star riders which defined the road racing and became true icons. Whether it was Fausto Coppi, Felice Gimondi or Marco Pantani, they all transcended the world of cycling and added to the popularity of the brand.
And it's doubly true when it comes to knowledgeable cycling collectors. Bianchi bikes are highly praised and some collectible pieces are immensely sought after and indeed valuable.
Just like this original Team Bianchi bicycle from 1946. It belonged to Luigi Casola, a rider with 4 Giro d'Italia stage wins or Coppa Agostini, Milano-Torino or Coppa Bernocchi triumps on his palmarès. In 1946 and 1947 he was a member of the strong Team Bianchi and played a role of a wingman of Il Campionissimo Fausto Coppi. As a strong rider, he also excelled in a velodrome and finished many races in a sprint. He was also known as a jovial character never spoiling any fun and some of his stunts became legendary.
As a team bicycle it has been built differently to standard models. As for Fausto Coppi or other members of the team, it was made by Luigi Gilardi, one of the best framebuilders based in Milan. Gilardi's work was fabulous, as you can see on the details of this bike.
As for the parts, it is fitted with Campagnolo Cambio Corsa shifting, Universal brakes, Fiamme rims, Brooks saddle and of course original Bianchi parts like the crankset, cockpit or the mudguards.
Luckily, this piece of cycling history has been preserved in authentic condition with the original paint, which shows nice patina. When the bike arrived in our workshop, we were facing the decision how to treat it. We took the cautious approach of keeping it as authentic as possible, since any careless move would be irreversible. It meant countless hours of very sensitive work, where everything has been cleaned literally from one square centimetre to another, but we think it was worth it.
The Team Bianchi bike of Luigi Casola, the wingman of the Campionissimo, is a unique chance to own this beautiful piece of cycling history in celeste.
ConditionUsed. The bicycle is in good condition. The original paint underwent gentle cleaning and has some patina. The decals are original too. There are no dents in the frame, no cracks and it's straight. All parts have been carefully checked, cleaned and are working fine.
|Rear Derailleur||Campagnolo Cambio Corsa|
|Shifters||Campagnolo Cambio Corsa|
|Crankset||Bianchi; 170 mm; 47 chainring|
|Hubs||Campagnolo; 4-speed; 20/15 ratio|
|Rims||Fiamme; 700 tubulars|
|Tires||Vittoria Mondiale; 622 tubulars|
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