We did the Première Manche - the first round - of A Travers riding across France from Dieppe to Marseille in the summer of 2009, and it was the original inspiration for this blog. The plan to put the 'band back together again' for another go in 2013 for the second installment fell on stoney ground, with life just getting in the way for too many of us, much to our disappointment. However, our enthusiasm for the bike remains undimmed, and so I'll keep posting my thoughts on the diverse and beautiful facets of the sport regardless. But there's bound to be another big 'adventure ride' coming soon - quite possibly in Italy - so potentially a name change too: Attraverso l'Italia in Bicicletta anyone?

Saturday, 24 September 2011

And You Thought They Had Problems With Fake Pinarellos ...

Stolen carbon moulds might be one thing, but have you ever stopped to consider if your beloved old steel frame is really made from genuine Columbus SLX, or any other tubing pukkah enough to require a sticker to prove its provenance? Look at this array of beauties you could use to pimp up a fake bike in an attempt to fool your clubmates - pic from over at milanofixed.com. We've all done it, right?

I have vague memories of carefully removing the genuine Columbus SL sticker from my own blue 1984 Pinarello Treviso and replacing it with the much-more exotic, and contrasting red, SLX decal, just to make it look a bit more flash. Indeed, before I was a man of any sort of means, my first £20 road frame with proper racing angles and clearances close enough to use Campagnolo Gran Sport, and later Nuovo Record, calipers without resorting to pathetically emasculating drop-blots, was a Falk-tubed 1981 Pearson that I performed a homespun make-over on. A dull Sutton-built hack bike no longer good enough for Chris Sherwood, complete with bent front forks, transformed lovingly into a wannabe Colnago Mexico, in hommage to Giuseppe.

Everyone after 5th September '82 was, or would be, on a Colnago. By hook or by crook. The fact that mine was washed-out blue -  rather than the gorgeous Team Del Tongo-Colnago deep wine red - was the least of its authenticity worries.