Team founder Mick Ives and racer Eliot Blundell were lucky enough to be invited to Italian Ernesto Colnago’s 87th birthday party at Greenwich in London.

Ernesto Colnago founded Colnago Ernesto & C. S.r.l. (Colnago) – a manufacturer of high-end road-racingbicycles.

Instead of following his family’s farming business, Ernesto Colnago chose to work in the cycle trade, apprenticing first with Gloria Bicycles at 13, subsequently taking up road racing. After a bad crash ended his racing career, he began subcontracting for Gloria, opened his own shop in 1954, building his first frames the same year.

While building frames, he remained much in demand as a racing mechanic. He was second mechanic on the Nivea team Giro d’Italia under Faliero Masi in 1955, eventually being employed as head mechanic for the Molteni team of Belgian cycling legend Eddy Merckx in 1963.

Ernesto gave Mick two special Colnago bike’s when he rode the 100 edition of the Giro route in 2017 raising funds for 4 British charities.

Mick was invited to go to the Factory in Italy to meet Ernesto after the ride,
and Eliot went along as well.

They both capitalised on the opportunities to rub shoulders with some of cycling’s greats including:

  • Maurice Burton Junior Sprint national title in 1973. He won the amateur scratch title the following year, raced over a 20 km distance He went on to represent Britain at the 1974 Commonwealth Games.
  • Federico Pozzetto who results include 4th place in GC Oberösterreichrundfahrt, 5th place in GC Flèche du Sud and 4th place in Croatia – Slovenia.

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