Milan-San Remo, the Big Story
6 November 2016 - Story
Milan-San Remo, the Big Story

It is the first real one-day race on the Pro Tour calendar.

It is the “Super Classic.” The winning rider can feel comfortable (so they say) all season.

The race’s honor roll does not lie. The elite of champions put their hands up above the finish line in San Remo – especially sprinters. The first victory for Colnago arrives in 1962, thanks to Belgian, Emile Daems of the Philco team. Finally, a triumph in the city of flowers – a solo win on the Poggio.

We then wait eight years for the second success, which that arrives in 1970. This victory belongs to Michele Dancelli, in a Molteni jersey. Seventeen years after the last success of Petrucci, another Italian is to triumph in Via Roma. At that precise moment came a bike with a flower, following the comments of Bruno Raschi, prestigious editor of La Gazzetta dello Sport, saying: “In the midst of many flowers, even Dancelli’s bike looked like a flower.” Thus was born the Colnago clover logo. “It’s a big clover that will bring good luck,” adds Raschi. The following year, 1971, Merckx won riding a Colnago which was branded Eddy Merckx for contractual reasons.

The Belgian had his fourth success in the Super Classic. In 1972 came the irresistible fifth victory for Eddy Merckx, signing the “pokerissimo” wearing the rainbow jersey. The first was Binda in 1931.  Giuseppe Saronni won the 1983 edition. The Lombard also conquered the World Championships on 5th of September, 1982 at Goodwood and thus became the fourth rider in history to establish himself in San Remo with the jersey of a World Champion.

Saronni rode a Colnago painted metallic red with white bands, which in short time became cult classic among fans and supporters. Saturday, March 20th is an unforgettable day for Maurizio Fondriest. His wife Ornella, in the early morning, gave birth to Maria Vittoria. Around 16.30, he triumphs in Milan-San Remo riding his Colnago Carbitubo with yellow and blue livery.

On top of the Poggio, Fondriest went on a successful solo break, riding strongly to Via Roma about five seconds ahead of the chasing pack. “I did not feel the chain – my Colnago seemed to ride itself.”  Oscar Freire had his first victory in the race’s 2004 edition – riding a Colnago frame with an orange, white and blue livery in perfect harmony with the Rabobank jersey.

The Spanish was the star of a dramatic ending, which seemed to be written by a film director. German rider, Erik Zabel prematurely raises his arms to heaven to rejoice, convinced of his fifth success, but Freire comes out to his right like a bullet for the victory.

The Spanish champion put his signature also nn the centenary edition (2007). Ernesto Colnago supplied him with the new C50 model, with HP chainstays. It was still Zabel launching the sprint, 200 hundred meters away while still in the lead, exceeding Petacchi. At the 100 meter mark, Freire looked back and had them all in a row.