Bianchi to relaunch the Chiorda brand
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Saturday, January 15, 2011

Bianchi to relaunch the Chiorda brand

by Shane Stokes at 5:01 PM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
 
Frames raced to victory in top races by Felice Gimondi and Marino Basso

ChiordaThe former racing brand of riders such as Felice Gimondi and Marino Basso, the Chiorda, will shortly be relaunched by the Bianchi company after a long absence.

The frame made its debut in the 50s and was used in the professional peloton between 1963 and 1972, clocking up many successes.

These include Gimondi’s historical triumphs in the Tour de France, the Giro d’Italia and the Vuelta a España, making him only the second rider to win all three Grand Tours. He succeeded Jacques Anquetil in that achievement and since then, only Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault and Alberto Contador have equalled the feat.

Gimondi also won Paris-Roubaix using the bicycle, while Basso triumphed in the 1972 world championships.

Having previously been a partner of the company, Bianchi is bringing it back to life. More details will be revealed soon, including specifics of the models and colours.

Bianchi is one of the most historic brands in cycling, having started out in 1885. Some of the top riders in the sport have used the bikes, including Fausto Coppi, Jan Ullrich, Mario Cipollini, Moreno Argentin, Danilo di Luca and Marco Pantani, who won the 1998 Tour on a Bianchi.

The latter’s perfectionist nature was detailed in a framebuilder’s guide published by ProCycling magazine. “Pantani had very specific ideas about what he wanted. He had 30 different frames a year from us - with different angles and weights on each one,” said Sara Mercante, head of Bianchi's research and development. “He changed his bike after every ride. I'd go and meet him during the Giro d'Italia and the Tour and discuss improvements with him. He'd ask to have the geometry changed by, say, half a degree, just to make sure the bike was absolutely perfect. He'd want different angles for different races. He's ask us to tweak the length of the top tube by a millimetre or by half a degree. Pantani was quite obsessive.”

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