Concorso di Motociclette

On the victor’s podium fully loaded with baggage: The Jury bestows the award of “Best of Show” on the Puch 250 Indien-Reise from the year 1933 at this year’s Concorso di Motociclette.

The announcement of class winners and the award of the Trofeo BMW Group today formed the gala celebration at the end of the seventh Concorso di Motociclette in Cernobbio, Northern Italy. The pinnacle of the beauty contest for historic motorcycles held under the auspices of the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este 2017 was the award for “Best of Show”. The expert Jury made up of experienced experts on motorcycle history conferred the award on the Puch 250 Indien-Reise manufactured in 1933 and owned by Italian collector Peter Reisch. The historic endurance touring motorcycle owes its name to a spectacular voyage of discovery from Vienna to Mumbai. The expedition to India was an international sensation at the time, 84 years later the machine maintained in its original condition was once again in the limelight on its outing to Lake Como.

The Puch 250 Indien-Reise comes from the “Max Reisch Collection”. This includes numerous other vehicles and items of equipment collected by Peter Reisch. The architect lives in Bolzano and is the son of journalist, writer and scientist Max Reisch, who made one of his most famous long-distance overland trips riding on the Puch 250 Indien-Reise. Max Reisch was famed as a “pioneer of long-distance travel”. In the year when the motorcycle was manufactured, he joined forces with his research colleague and pillion passenger Herbert Tichy from Vienna to start out on an epic expedition. The two riders travelled 13 000 kilometres across the Balkans, through Turkey, Syria, Iraq, Persia, Baluchistan to Mumbai in faraway India. Reisch wrote about his experiences on this journey in the book “India: The Shimmering Dream”.

The Puch 250 Indien-Reise continues to fascinate even today with its authentic appearance. The motorcycle is fully equipped with contemporary saddlebags, tools and spare parts. It was manufactured in Graz, Austria, and it appears to have emerged from a journey through time yet at the same time to be ready for a new adventure. The power for the journey is delivered by a 250 cc two-stroke twin-cylinder engine. At the time, 6 hp generated sufficient power for a journey to India – and now thanks to loving care and attention it is also ready for the parade of winners in the park of Villa Erba on the shores of Lake Como.

A hint of wanderlust and zest for adventure accompanied the prizewinning ceremony for the “Best of Show”. This continued the spirit imbued in this year’s motto for the Concorso d’Eleganza Villa d’Este – “Around the World in 80 Days – Voyage through an Era of Records”. Today, Sunday, the Jury also made awards for the winners of the five classes. Another special prize went to the Ducati Café Racer design study. The motorcycle competed in the class Concept Bikes and Prototypes. It was characterised by the clear styling and purist design penned by the Italian design studio Centro Stile Ducati. This machine was selected by the public audience in the grounds of Villa Erba as their favourite machine.

Since 2011, the Concorso di Motociclette has been part of the programme of the world’s most exclusive and traditional beauty contest for historic vehicles. 41 vehicles in five evaluation classes and one special class were presented in the seventh edition of this beauty pageant. Once more, the history of motorised two-wheelers was presented to the public through the prism of popular classic machines and numerous exotic and rare gems that are generally only familiar to a handful of connoisseurs. This year, the Street Run was once again one of the particularly atmospheric items on the programme. On Saturday, the historic motorcycles made their way from the park of Villa Erba through the streets of Cernobbio to the Grand Hotel Villa d’Este where they paraded in front of the Jury. A special show was dedicated to Italian motorcycles powered by 50 cc engines. These were the machines that many teenagers rode on to earn their two-wheeled, motorised spurs during the 1960s and 1970s. Design studies and prototypes on two wheels were also presented at this year’s Concorso di Motociclette for the first time.

Here is a list of all the winners of the Concorso di Motociclette 2017 including the year of manufacture and owner:

Trofeo BMW Group – Best of Show by the Jury Puch 250 Indien-Reise, 1933, Peter Reisch (IT)

Trofeo Villa Erba – Best of Show by Public Referendum Ducati Café Racer, 2017, Centro Stile Ducati (IT)

Class Winners by the Jury

MOTORCYCLES OF THE 1920S AND 1930S FOR THE GREAT JOURNEY Gillet Tour du Monde, 1926, Musée Auto Moto Vélo Châtellerault (FR)

1950S SCOOTERS THAT DID NOT COME FROM THE MARKET LEADERS Bastert Einspurauto, 1952, Museo Scooter & Lambretta (IT)


FRAMED IN EUROPE – 1970S JAPANESE FOURS IN NEW CLOTHES Bimota Honda HB1, 1975, Collezione Zappieri (IT)