Italia Bici 2005 home

In our special Italia Bici section, presents the finest Italy has to offer in bicycles and cycling apparel. Each feature presents a leading Italian manufacturer and its 2005 product lines, with special insights into the design and manufacture of their products, including the input provided by some of the world's leading professional cyclists.

In these pages, we also meet the designers and driving forces behind some of cycling's greatest names, and look at the history of companies that have shaped the sport in the world's number one cycling nation.

Wilier Triestina has been around for almost a century and is still going strong, as Cyclingnews found when we visited the company's modern facility in Rossano Veneto.

Back in the day, well, ninety-nine years ago to be exact, in 1906 Pietro Dal Molin founded the Wilier bicycle company along the Brenta River in Bassano del Grappa, Italy in the province of Vicenza, just at the foot of Monte Grappa. The bicycle craze was sweeping Europe in general and Italy in particular so in his small forge, Dal Molin built "cavalli d'acciaio" (steel horses) that gained recognition as top quality bicycles that were highly sought after before WW1. In fact, many of the Italian bersaglieri bicycle troops in WW1 rode Wilier manufactured bicycles into battle.


Known throughout the cycling world for their bicycle tubing, components and now tires, the people at Deda in Campagnola Cremasca, Italy are fanatical about creating the most innovative equipment possible. "This company is rooted in Italian hardcore road racing from top to bottom," said Dedaelementi's managing director Fulvio Acquati when Cyclingnews visited him recently at Deda's HQ in the countryside near Cremona, Italy.

Founded 13 years ago by two brothers, Luca and Stefano Locatelli, the Deda operation consists of three distinct divisions; Dedacciai, the original Deda company dedicated to the design and manufacture of state of the art bicycle tubing, frame components and forks; Dedaelementi for components like handlebars, stems and seatposts and Dedatre, a new division launched in 2004 to create the latest in bicycle tire technology.


Occasionally on our visits to Colnago World HQ, we are invited into what we call "The Inner Sanctum", otherwise known as Ernesto Colnago's office. Usually the door is closed as Ernesto Colnago is almost always in meetings with the constant stream of people who come to Cambiago to see him. Suppliers, dealers, racers, friends from the world of cycling and on Saturday mornings, even the occasional kids' racing team of young Italians who are brought to meet their team bike sponsor, Sig. Colnago himself. Occasionally, a journalist even gets past the door and on the occasion of Cyclingnews' Italia Bici 2005, we recently sat down on a cold March day with Ernesto Colnago to talk.

FThe first thing Colnago did was reach under his capacious desk and pull out a newly painted and decorated C50 frame to show us. "This is the new frame that we're sending to Oscar Freire. We'll make a limited edition production run of this frame; just 250." After admiring Freire's new ride, we discussed a topic that's still near and dear to Colnago's heart: bicycle racing. "Do you know that we are sponsoring quite a few teams this season?" Colnago asked.


The symbol of DeRosa is a heart and it's an appropriate one, for the love and passion that the artisan bicycle builder from Cusano Milanino represents in their bicycles. DeRosa's real company name is DeRosa Ugo & Figli - Ugo DeRosa and Sons - and like many small Italian firms that make unique, often world-famous artisan products, DeRosa is a family affair as Cyclingnews discovered when we visited the company's workshops at Cusano Milanino, Italy.

In 1952, Ugo DeRosa opened his first store/workshop on via Lanfranco della Pila in Milano but today, DeRosa headquarters is a large factory/office hidden in an industrial area just north of Milano. Right next to the Bocciodromo Sperone-Neirano, there's no sign out front at DeRosa unless you look straight up and see the huge neon sign that points south towards the Tangenziale "DeRosa Ugo & Figli-Biciclette Speciale".


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