1960 Wilier Triestina Junior
Aw, isn’t this a cute little bike?
Perfect for the first-grader who wanted to beat the school bus home.
This was the race-ready rig for the rider who wanted to keep up with all of the older kids in the neighborhood.
It can be difficult to find a good little road bike for kids, even today. In the late ’50′s and early ’60′s kids typically had to choose between small balloon-tire bikes and mid-weight “English Racers”. The kid who originally owned this one was pretty lucky, considering that his bike weighed about half as much as other options and boasted some fine features.
We aren’t sure which parts were available off the shelf and which of this stuff was custom. Actually, the handlebar stem was obviously custom as it sports a nice Wilier crest. The handlebars, stem, saddle, brake levers, pedals and crank arms are all reduced in size and perfectly proportional. The drivetrain is a 4-speed, with a Campione Gian Robert rear derailleur and a single shift lever. The 22″ wheels run on tubular (sew-up) tires like any real racing bike, and the bike even came with a matching pump.
Wilier Triestina is an Italian brand that was founded in 1906 in Bassano del Grappa. Since the beginning Wilier took racing bikes very seriously. Offering a junior-sized racing bike would have been a natural choice for a company that has backed bike racers for 100 years. Today it’s the U.S. based United Health Care team, but 20 years ago it was Marco Pantani, and in the ’40′s it was Giro d’Italia winner Fiorenzo Magni.