ride70s en classic-bike-article-la-dolce-vita 003

La Dolce Vita


They called our Club La Dolce Vita, and we couldn't agree more!

It was exciting and a great priviledge to be featured in the bible of classic motorcycles, Classic Bike Magazine from UK, with some beautiful pictures and a brilliant interview. Launched in 1973 and published uninterruptedly since, this is pretty much the mecca of classic bikes, so we are pretty chuffed with it.

Thank you CB!


RIDE 70S interview

By Fabio Affuso


If there is a place where people go literally crazy for classic bikes this is Italy for sure.

It’s enough to name Guzzi, Laverda, MV, Gilera…to get goosebumps all over, no matter your age. Italy is a country where the younger folks absorb the love of classics form their uncles and grandfathers. And just like older folks are very much highly esteemed by all for their life stance and wisdom, so are the older bikes. Family values and ties are transmitted through motorcycles too. Let’s not even mention the famous tracks or the various racing legends the country has produced. The love for motors, and classic motors that is, is well and alive in Italy. 

Piero Casadio Pirazzoli decided to mould his passion for classics into a life project that became a business and a way of life. He chose to share his love for classics by offering others the possibility to ride his beloved collection, setting up a rental of classics offering tours through the most beautiful Italian roads and mountains.

I met with Pietro and a bunch of friends in the Emilia Romagna hills to discover more about his stable and his business.

  • What’s your history, what pushed you towards motorcycles? 

Born in 1968, I grew up in Imola, the heart of the Italian ‘motor land’. There in the 80s a motorcycle was an integral part of everyday youth. With her you’d go to school, you invited girls for an afternoon spin across the city, you’d challenge other groups for improvised competitions around the block, you’d go to the dance clubs in the near Riviera Romagnola…Not to mention the Sundays spent churning kilometres of corners up and down through the countless hill passes between Romagna and Toscana…you felt like a ‘road racer’ at the Tourist Trophy!


  • Even if you’re young you love classics to the point of creating yourself a job between love and business. How did you start with classic bikes, what pushed you towards carburettor and drum brakes?

Well, maybe I’m not so young , but I’m flattered anyway ☺

I think the love for classics come from far. In the early 70s in Imola there was the legendary 200 Miles, the so called ‘ Daytona of Europe’. I remember the walks in the paddocks with my grandfather Gardo; the smells, the bikes, the colours; the people of that era probably in-printed in my DNA the passion for pure and authentic motorcycling. 

In the early 2000 I had the opportunity to buy my very first classic, a 1971 Honda CB 500 Four in candy gold. Until then I always understood motorcycling as a search for the best performance, either on the track, on the road or in off-road. But something inside me was changing; then one after the other arrived my three wonderful daughters and the awareness of the risks of motorcycles took over. But instead of leaving the two wheels as many new fathers do, I simply decided to change route…

  • Tell me about Ride 70s and its development so far. How did the initial idea come to life?

The world of motorcycles was changing fast; the technological exasperation applied to new models and a progressive loss of personality, perhaps due to the various brand’s need to run after each other in an ever demanding but smaller market, progressively cooled down my enthusiasm for contemporary motorcycles. On the contrary, in a classic saddle I began to discover new sensations that became increasingly satisfying.

Then came the crazy idea of going to find those 70s models I dreamed of as a child, and that I collected in my room at the scale of 1:12.

But classic motorcycles are expensive, from the initial purchase to the restoration and then the maintenance. Then you have to run them often, so that the efforts spent don’t get lost. 

Why then not sharing them with other classic lovers? So in 2011 was born ‘Imola Vintage Garage’, a little collection of iconic models from the 70s, available to whoever wanted to have a leisurely jump in the past. In 2019 the fleet grew, and the location changed to a suggestive garage-loft out of an old ranch at the feet of mount Titan, in the heart of the Republic of San Marino. The new name for this unique venture became ‘RIDE 70S’, literally meaning ‘cavalcare gli anni 70!’.

  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of working with a bike rental and in particular with classic bikes? What do you love and what would you change?

It’s not a real bike rental: with us you ride the bike in a guided tour with an expert tour leader. This way accidents or damages are minimised. The only disadvantage is that a classic motorcycle ridden by different not always expert people requires extra attention to be kept in shape. Anyway it’s always better on the road than in the garage. 

The thing I love the most is the enthusiasm of all the riders of my tours; initially they are a bit apprehensive towards the old bike, often with drum brakes and gear pedal on the right, but then on the road the smile is stamped on everybody’s face, and at the end of the tour the knowledge of having shared such emotions is my biggest gratification!

Honestly I wouldn’t change anything, I just wish I had more time to promote such a unique and engaging activity that’s almost unheard of, especially with foreign riders.

  • RIDE 70S captures the heart of many. But what have you got on offer?

We offer different experiences we call ‘Half-day ride’, ‘Full-day ride’ e ‘Long ride’. They are tours of different length, commitment and difficulty. From half a day riding between the suggestive old towns and castles of the Romagna inland, to the full day up and down through super fun and panoramic mountain passes, to real holidays of several days to discover central Italy, between Umbria, Marche and Toscana regions. Until now every ride always started and ended at the RIDE 70S Garage.

  • Tell me about the motorcycles you have in the stable now. How many and why those models?

Right now the fleet is 15 bikes, authentic icons of the 70s.

First of all, we have the Italians, the 1973 Laverda SF 750, the 1972 Benelli Tornado 650, or the 3 Moto GuzziS: 1976 Le Mans 850, 1973 V7 850 GT and 1974 V7 750 S. But also the 1971 Ducati Scrambler 350cc and a 1972 450cc, and a 1975 Moto Morini 3 ½ Sport.

We culdn’t obviously miss the British, the 1971 Norton Commando 750 Fastback, and the celebrated 1969 Triumph Bonneville 650, but also the German BMW R90S from 1975, in the iconic suit ‘Daytona Orange’, and then a rare example of the Italo-American collaboration between Aermacchi and Harley-Davidson with the single cylinder SS 350 of 1975.

Finally, we have the Japanese who marked the passage from the old to the new era, upsetting and relaunching the world of motorcycling: the Honda CB 500 Four of 1971, and the CB 750 Four of 1972, together with the first super bike of all times, the 1975 Kawasaki Z1.

Often they ask me what’s my favourite, but it’s really difficult to express a preference; every one of them has at least one characteristic setting it apart form the others, and all have a strong and distinctive character. Travelling with these motorcycles is pure emotion; the adrenaline injection they offer is still incredible. The sound of the motors and the carbs, the colour schemes, the shine of the chrome, the vibrations and even the fact you have to remember on which side you have the gears and brake, they transform every throttle twist in a riot of emotions.

  • Which bikes would you like to add to the collection?

There are many wonderful motorcycles from the 70s. It would be amazing to propose the legendary 2 stroke Kawasaki 500 and 750, but then the game would be a little more dangerous. Staying on the four strokes, at least a twin Ducati we’ll have to add sooner or later, but the prices are over the top now. 


  • How do you manage the restorations and maintenance of the babies?

I look after the maintenance myself, from the frequent oil changes, to the lubrication of all cables and levers, from the torquing of nuts and bolts to the difficult search of replacement parts. For the restoration I rely on specialists for painting, chroming, polishing, welding, etc. Engines and carbs are looked after by our master and trusted mechanic Gino Girardi, one of the last few true mechanics, who wants to always find the origin of the problem, who rather than replacing wants to repair and old part, because “the parts made today aren’t worth as much as the original ones, even if 50 years old and crippled”.


  • What’s in the future for Ride 70s?

First of all, I want to hold tight without losing enthusiasm in the face of the multiple daily difficulties we find to run such an out of ordinary business. We rely on a small number of passionate people, and as such it’s not easy to reach the numbers necessary even to cover the considerable expenses we have to face. We are broadening our collaborations network to improve our service and spread the world with motorcyclists around the world.  
The target will be to propose full fledged journeys with our beloved classics, something between adventure and vintage culture, finding again those rhythms and gestures lost in our current era of frenetic progress, often too fast and not strictly connected to the improvement of the quality of life. A journey with a classic bike is an exceptional therapy, a mix of adrenaline and relaxing rhythm, finding healthy camaraderie and the simple emotions lost while going too fast or too direct to the destination. 


  • Finally, tell me your secret dream?

I’d love to find the energy and the people to organise a vintage event, a sort of motorcycle fest dedicated to all the classic bike owners, no matter what type or model. The location could be the very RIDE 70S ‘Vintage motor ranch’, with the adjoining field full of old school tents, as it was around the Imola track for the 200 Miles. And then party!


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