Bianchi has made a number of special limited edition harkening back to their heyday with Marco Pantani dominating pro racing. This latest Specialissima Pantani Oropa goes back in time two decades to one of Il Pirata’s greatest victories, his 1999 Giro comeback from a mechanical wearing the maglia rosa to win the stage climbing up to the Sanctuary of Oropa.
Bianchi Specialissima Pantani Oropa limited edition road
Riding for the Mercatone Uno-Bianchi team in the 15th stage of the 1999 Giro d’Italia, Marco Pantani had a crisis on the bike. A jammed chain just 10k from a mountain top finish saw him burn half a minute on the side of the road, while his competition put the hammer down to try to take advantage.
Well, Il Pirata got rolling again with the help of his teammates and went on to set a record on the finishing climb up to Oropa, taking a dominating stage win, fueled by more than just whatever was coursing in his veins. The Italians called it ‘La Rimonta del Secolo’, ‘the comeback of the century’ and describe if as one of Pantini’s most memorable efforts.
So that is what Bianchi is commemorating here in 2019’s limited edition Pantani replica frameset, with its Santuario di Oropa 20th anniversary logo on the fork, painted in Bianchi’s Treviglio, Italy HQ. The bike under that retro black and gold (& celeste) Mercatone Uno-Bianchi livery is Bianchi’s premium modern, lightweight carbon road bike – the Specialissima CV.
The Specialissima Pantani Oropa frame featured Bianchi’s Countervail carbon composite that promised to eliminate 80% of the road buzz before it gets to the rider. Even with that fancy carbon tech, it still claims frame weight of just 780g.
The modern lightweight race bike features a 1.25″ tapered full carbon steerer, a press fit BB86 bottom bracket, and a round 27.2mm seatpost. The Specialissima is available in a seven size range (47-61cm).
This complete build gets an appropriately modern & Italian mechanical Campagnolo Super Record 12-speed gruppo, Fulcrum Racing Zero wheels & Vittoria Corsa tires, with FSA K-Force finishing kit.
Specialissima Pantani Oropa – Pricing & Availability
Bianchi hasn’t yet announced how many of the limited edition Specialissima Pantani Oropa will be produced or if it will be available globally. (Get in touch with your local dealer if you need one.) Going on the basis of the last Marco Pantani 20th limited edition replica version of the Bianchi Specialissima, we expect this one to also retail for approximately 4700€ for the frame & fork. A complete bike build like this with Campy Super Record 12-speed would bring the bike to around 10,500€. We doubt a reissue of that Il Pirata Selle Italia Flite Ti will be making a comeback.