I’ll never forget the day that I met Robin Williams. I was working for Volagi Cycles at the time and happened to be in California. Specifically, Sausalito, working a demo event in front of A Bicycle Odyssey. Other than being an incredible shop positioned right in the middle of one of the Bay Area’s busiest bicycle routes, the shop also happened to be a favorite of Robin Williams. As luck would have it, he just happened to stop into the shop that day to check on one of his bikes.
Like any true A-list celebrity I might imagine, Robin was withdrawn, trying not to draw attention to himself. But his inner cycling fanatic got the better of him, and the Volagi Liscio caught his eye. After a bit of small talk, he seemed to realize we wanted to talk about bikes more than his latest movie, and his demeanor did a complete 180. All of a sudden his eyes were bright with excitement and he let his irreverently funny personality bubble to the surface. After taking a spin on the Liscio and cracking a joke about having too many bikes, he was on his way.
Obviously, his story doesn’t have the happiest of endings, but I feel fortunate to have seen his genius first hand, and to have had a chance to talk bikes. People always talked about the fact that Robin was a cyclist, but to get a sense of how much he actually appreciated bicycles, you only need to take a look at his extensive collection. In total, there are 84 bikes or frames, one trainer, one scooter, and one unicycle up for auction after the collection was donated by his children. Stating that they ” hope these bikes will bring their new owners as much joy as riding them and helping these causes always brought Robin,” the Williams family has decided that proceeds from the auction will be divided between the Challenged Athletes Foundation and the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation.
Check out a few of the standouts after the break…
The quality of the bikes in Robin’s collection is so stellar, that it’s hard to figure out where to begin. If you go on starting price alone, the Colnago and La Carrera Master Pista, Futura 2000 is worthy. Already bid on at $10,000, the collaboration between La Carrera Bike Shop, Colnago, and Futura 2000 seems to be holding its value well, though no doubt buoyed by Williams’ ownership.
Along with a number of custom builds there are also a few Dario Pegorettis including this Responsorium. The three other Pegorettis have a bit more subdued paint, but this one is at the top of the bids at just over $6k.
Robin was quite the collector of road bikes with anything from steel and titanium custom builds, to more modern bikes though the exclusivity is still there. Just look at the Trek Madone with the Limited Edition Discovery Channel Diamond 7 paint. While it is a replica of the one ridden by Lance in his 7th Tour de France one the final stage, this still has a diamond embellished head badge. With a starting bid of $10,000 and Lance’s current state of affairs, we have to wonder if this one will move.
There are quite a few oddballs thrown in there as well like this Zipp 2001. The list includes a Softride Rocket Wing, a number of fixed gears, a custom Sycip Java Town, Litespeeds, Merlins, BMCs and a lot more.
Of course it’s not just road bikes either. Historically significant mountain bikes like this Outland VPP are ther as well as a K2 ProFlex 5500, a Trek Y33 OCLV, and the list goes on.
Proving it’s not just all serious riding, Robin apparently also had a collection of less serious riding implements like a Z Turbo electric scooter, Schwinn Unicycle, and a Just Go Mini Bike. If you’re hoping the unicycle would be a cheap way to get a piece of the Robin Williams’ collection, the bidding is already up to $2,600. The other two? Just a mere $850 each.
The auction closes on October 25 at 1pm EST, and you must join Paddle8 before you can bid. Check out the full list of bicycles here.
*If you haven’t heard by this point, Robert Choi was recently hit from behind while riding his bike near the Volagi office in Ogden, UT. One of the founders of Volagi cycles, Robert has been a steady force of innovation in the bike industry for years, from pioneering LED lighting technology with Vistalite to his current position with Volagi. Unfortunately, the left him thinking he was ok, only to later collapse at the office. Sustaining a traumatic brain injury, Robert has a long road to recovery but he has never been known to quit. A GoFundMe account has been set up to help with the mounting medical bills as he has been transferred to a long term acute care facility. Any help and support is greatly appreciated!