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TIME - LINE  Catalogue

Cinelli Speciale Corsa


You can read different interpretations on the net in regards to the name, but the reality is much simpler.

All the various names used refer to the same model and the same bicycle.

In the beginning, we could say that a certain classification in use named the top of the range model Mod. A (Super Corsa) to differentiate it from the two less prestigious models Mod. B (Corsa) and Mod. C (Riviera).

Over the time, the Super Corsa with the label "Mod. S.C." became "Special Corsa" due to an error made by the supplier of the labels (60s') who had misinterpreted the abbreviation S.C. Today, the wrong labels would have been thrown away but it was a different time. Indeed, compensated the error with a discount, the labels were used.


Therefore, the wrong labels dictated law and, in a later edition, new "Speciale Corsa" labels (70's) were deliberately produced.


"Super Corsa" finally became a name, a single word: "Supercorsa".

Cinelli 1952


Although it is not possible to say exactly when the longest bike in history was born, for certainty, in 1951, Cino Cinelli worked with Luigi Valsassina on a prototype bike for his friend Fausto Coppi. Valsassina had made many bicycles for Coppi when he was Bianchi's frame-maker, and he was very sceptical about one of them which was probably too different from the standard in use. However, Cino strongly wanted an innovative bike because, changing the roads and being less bumpy than before, he could stiffen the fork slightly to increase performance. As a result, by tilting the fork head, the chain stays were shorter, more rigid and aerodynamic in shape. In addition, Cino had also designed a new seat post locking system. The clamping screw passed through the stays welded to the collar and this allowed the locking point to be aligned with the centre of the vertical tube ensuring a firmer grip on the seat post tube. Cino wanted greater elasticity of the lugs in the saddle, bottom bracket shell and fork crown. For this reason, he went to Shaffusa and turned to Georg Fischer who began producing a series of spheroidal cast iron lugs (better known as ductile cast iron) for Cinelli. Fausto Coppi loved the new bicycle and Valsassina himself was particularly satisfied with the result. Most likely, we can say this was the first real Cinelli Super Corsa.


Cinelli SC 1950 Cinelli

60s (wrong label)

Speciale corsa 1960 Cinelli
Speciale Corsa 1970 Cinelli



At this time, Cinelli decided to replace the Malaguti "wolf's ears" lugs used for the head tube with the lugs made by the Cinelli company itself.


1963 was an important year for the evolution of our Supercorsa: Cino Cinelli decided to replace the tubes of the main triangle, until then supplied by Reynolds 531, with the SL series from Columbus, already supplier of the stays and fork.

As far as we can read in the time catalogues, it seems that on specific request it could still be possible to order a Super Corsa with Reynolds tubes. (It is hard to say how many were really requested).

50-60 Columbus


In the mid-60s, the oiler holder on the upper left side of the bottom bracket shell is removed. The drain hole at the bottom of the box is also eliminated and both the holes have a closing screw.

Cinelli Speciale Corsa


The famous three holes in the top of lugs which remained in use until the early 1980s are introduced. The inside of the holes was painted red in the bikes with the classic silver frame and white in the frames of other colours such as light blue or bronze. Black was also occasionally used for the gold frames.

Also, the brake bridge is lowered to accommodate the new Campagnolo Record brakes.


The three holes also appear in the fork lugs.


The Campagnolo cable guides are brazed on the bottom bracket shell.

The fender eyelets used to secure the mudguards are removed from fork ends and dropouts.

Cinelli Supercorsa


Unfortunately, dating a Cinelli Super Corsa is not easy and it is certainly not possible to do it with absolute precision. This is due to the serial numbers which did not follow a chronological order but indicated a progressive production that referred to various factors whose information was lost. However, in the 1970s we used to find a correspondence between the first digit and the year: 2238-1972 / 3294-1973 / 7218-1977.

Since the early 80's, Cinelli has adopted a new system and the first two digits of the serial would indicate the exact year of production.


An indication to help us to date the bike comes from the head badge:

1947/53 - 55mm cloisonné (melted coloured glass) on silver-plated brass base.

1953/58 - 56mm enamel on silver brass base.

1958/71 - 51mm enamel on silver brass base.

1971/78 - Anodised aluminium badge.

1978/79 - Cinelli badge decal. 

Since 1979 - Decal of the new "Flying C" logo.


83520 > n. 520 / 1983

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