Today’s post is brought to you by Costante Girardengo -
Costante, as you’ll learn by clicking through the image above, kicked some serious booty in the early part of the 1900’s (wow - is that really “the last century” now…?). He was the first Italian rider dubbed “Campionissimo”, which was news to my Fausto-centric understanding of the term. Costante also won the Milan-San Remo 6 times, a record which stood until Eddy nicked him by one. He was in short, very fast for a long time, recovered from a serious illness and had some of his best years trampled upon by WW1. Tragic and heroic in the best sense.
I was nudged into this mini-research on him by an email sent by a happy t-shirt customer, who shared a story about growing up with a Girardengo track bike, the same as a childhood friend. As with all good kids-with-bikes stories, they rode the piss out of them, helmetless and not-knowing-any-better, and somehow lived through it. But, I’d never heard of the name before and prowled around to see what was out there.
The wikipedia entry references a line of motorbikes with the Girardengo name, and as with most things of that era, they either had a less-popularized line of bicycles, or some other enterprising fellow decided to cash in on the name. I don’t know. Anyone else have or heard of these?
I’m off tomorrow to the Rivendell Weekend. Excited to go ride on Mount Diablo, which is actually somewhere I’ve never ridden. Expect some photos and a bit o’ reporting. Of course, it will be biased as heck, as the first part of the weekend involves getting the implant. (And Gallery Submissions will sit in the inbox until my return.) Anyway, everybody play nice this weekend and get a good ride or three in.