Albabici, the import company responsible for bringing fine Italian cycling products to the U.S. - Nalini apparel, Sci`Con seat bags and travel cases, Selle SMP saddles, and Fondriest frames -- is run by a hard-working, ex-cycling pro from Verona, Italy, Gianluca Caliari.
During his days in Verona as coach of a junior team, Gianluca used a 1960 Vespa scooter for motor-pacing. For those of you unfamiliar with the practice of motor-pacing, it is a time-honored training technique whereby cyclists pedal inches behind a motorcycle or scooter at 30+ mph -- all in an attempt to train the rider's muscles to fire repeatedly at high rates of speed.
Think of it as drafting Eddie Merckx, if Eddie never got tired. Okay, bad example; Eddie never did get tired.
At any rate, Gianluca's vintage Vespa was specially outfitted for the task, sprouting extra wheel mounts and an ingenious rear roller bumper. If a rider rolled forward and touched the Vespa, the front wheel would spin harmlessly against the roller without disrupting the rider's balance. Unloading off a bike at such speeds and skidding across the tarmac isn't fun -- plus it would shred all that exquisite Nalini apparel.
Caliari's Vespa is now stateside, being used by the San Diego-based California Pools/DeWalt Cycling Team team for training. In the above photo, that's team founder Ernie Sanchez on the scooter, with Tim Coleman in the draft. The Vespa is powered by a 125cc Piaggio 2-cycle motor and looks much the same as it did when Gianluca roamed the roads outside of Verona. It still flies its original 1960 Verona license plate.
Medley Communications joins the blogosphere!
Over the coming months I hope to fuel these pages with client news, tidbits on public relations, as well as share items -- from the compelling to the curious -- that may interest anyone who clicks by.
By now you're probably asking, what is Medley Communications? Good question.
Medley Communications is a small public relations agency -- a consultancy, really -- that serves the cycling, fitness, outdoor, and automotive categories. I create results-driven communications campaigns that deliver brand and product exposure. You can find my clients on the pages USA Today and the Wall Street Journal, in magazines such as Bicycling, VeloNews, Men's Journal, Outside, Wired, and AutoWeek, plus popular online sites like GearJunkie.com and Engadget.com, to name but a few.
That's it for now. Thanks for visiting. And see you again soon. Gary