Sunday, June 23, 2013

He's Valentino Campagnolo, and You're Not

Interesting piece by longtime observer of all things cycling (and friend of Campy Only) Gary Boulanger:

Valentino Campagnolo (left) with Eddy Merckx and Miguel Indurain

http://www.pavedmag.com/featured/5-reasons-why-he’s-valentino-campagnolo-and-you’re-not/

Not really five reasons why Campangnolo's leader isn't you, but some nevertheless read-worthy vignettes about the company and some of the people who love its products.

From the article:

"First-mover status takes a backseat in Vicenza, based on Valentino’s edict that mirrors his father’s decades later. “The bicycle has evolved greatly, especially in the last 10 to 15 years, and even more in the past five years,” Valentino said at the 80th anniversary celebration. “We can expect that evolution to continue and we need to be able to follow or, even better, to try and anticipate the evolution. But, everything has to be based on performance and reliability. Sometimes we need to be able to anticipate the future needs of the market; this is a tough job. But staying behind racers and being willing to listen to their experiences, to the reasons why they lost a race, will see us continue to develop. That is the difference for Campagnolo.”

Campagnolo spent 20 years developing its EPS electronic groupset, with the eventual launch of Super Record EPS and Record EPS coming in 2011, two years after Shimano Dura-Ace Di2."

Not touched on in the article is why Valentino's father, Tullio, named one of the company's lowest-priced and least desirable gruppos after his son. All flavors of the Valentino derailleurs were cheap, stamped-metal shadows of their more expensive Nuovo Record and Record counterparts. Thanks, dad.

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