Giro underpants guy nabs ultimate roadside schwag - a Farnese Vini Cipollini team bike (+ video)

'Stolen' bike was forgotten by team staff after Rabottini bike swap

by Simon_MacMichael   May 24, 2012  

Giro underpants guy

If you’ve been to a big bike race, you’ve almost certainly come away with the odd souvenir – a Skoda cap, T-Mobile inflatable hand, Cofidis keyring and postcards of the entire Riso Scotti 1998 team are among the must-have items we’ve nabbed at the roadside over the years. One Giro d’Italia fan clad only in underpants claimed the ultimate schwag at the weekend, however, when he found himself temporarily in possession of a Farnese Vini team bike, a Cipollini RB1000, the frame alone worth upwards of £4,000.

The incident happened on Stage 19 to Cervinia when Matteo Rabottini – who 24 hours later would ride solo for 90 kilometres and see off Joaquin Rodriguez in the closing metres to win at Pian dei Resinelli – needed to change bikes. Team manager Luca Scinto and a mechanic jumped out of the team car to help the rider, who had handed the bike to the fan to hold.

The car then sped off without the bike, the bemused fan brandishing it as it headed off up the road, as seen in the following clip from SBS Cycling Central.

In a report on its website, Farnese Vini said that Scinto had turned round as soon as he realised what had happened but found no trace of the bike, and muttering darkly about “theft,” promised to study video footage would in an attempt to bring the alleged thief to justice – whether that might involve an ID parade with individuals dressed only in underpants sadly isn’t known.

As it turned out, the bike wasn’t stolen at all, and was back with the team as Rabottini rode off to that stunning win in the mountains above Lake Como, although whether he was riding that specific frame is unclear.


7 user comments

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At least we now know why Farnese Vini have chosen that thermonuclear hi-viz colour scheme - if they keep misplacing things.

posted by cowspassage [43 posts]
24th May 2012 - 11:53


I think it very unfair of to accuse someone of theft without proof. the guy in the underpants may have not taken it. there was a group there and anyone could have 'nabbed' it.

Goodluck to the chap who was left a gift.

posted by Decster [246 posts]
24th May 2012 - 22:35


Decster wrote:
I think it very unfair of to accuse someone of theft without proof.

Um, as it says in the article, it was the team that was talking about "theft," not us. And they got the bike back, so all's well.

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posted by Simon_MacMichael [9310 posts]
24th May 2012 - 23:45


Crying Are they really underpants? Surprise


posted by seanieh66 [196 posts]
25th May 2012 - 7:46


Decster wrote:
I think it very unfair of to accuse someone of theft

I must have missed that bit.

If Farnese Vini couldn't leave him the bike, at least they could've chipped in for a new pair of strides.

posted by Mat Brett [2136 posts]
25th May 2012 - 23:47


give the underpants man the bike @ the end of the season,
its nice to be nice


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posted by graeme [2 posts]
26th May 2012 - 9:09

1 Like

Remember being on the side of the 2003 TT course in Paris when a T Mobile bike slid off the roof to land near me .
Just back from Giro and survived the Italian drivers who are running second to the careless driving of those accredited by the Giro ! Asked Mc Quack last year to organise the UCIless to setup a mandatory test program for those seeking " Acreditation at UCI Tours " in the hope lives would be saved !

Found ALL those that the " tifosi " would regard as important but wonder if Mc Quack was ever at the Giro since i did not sight him ?

What a tussle this year's Giro was , and happy that Canadian Cycling will get a boost from Ryder's Victory .

Roll on the TDF where i predict that the favourites will also get shoved aside !

Skippy(advocate for "Disabled / Para Sport")@skippydetour. blogging as skippi-cyclist.blogspot & Parrabuddy.blogspot currently on the road with ProTour Grand Tour Events .

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posted by skippy [406 posts]
28th May 2012 - 12:11