100 000km on a Ducati called Lidia

Time of article published Jun 8, 2011

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Five continents, eight sets of tyres, 350 days and nearly 100 000km are just some of the incredible numbers that underline Paolo Pirozzi's impressive round-the-world adventure.

The 31-year-old president of the Naples Ducati Dreams Club says he's a "motorcyclist" by profession - and so he should. His life and work revolves entirely around motorcycles.

He's clocked up more than 450 000km on a succession of Ducati motorcycles, including this round-the-world dream trip, which covered an incredible list of countries and visited 80 Ducati Owners Clubs around the globe.

Pirozzi's ride began at World Ducati Week in Misano in June 2010 and ended with his grand arrival at the Imola circuit at the end of May 2011. Hundreds of Ducatisti were there to welcome him, including Ducati CEO Gabriele Del Torchio.

Club members built a podium at the circuit, with two of his previous Ducatis, a Monster 900 called Nenna and a Multistrada 620 named Jessica on which he rode from Bologna to Beijing form that toook him froom

On the top step of the podium was the Multistrada 1200 S that had just taken him safely across five continents, affectionately named "Lidia" by Pirozzi.

He'd left Misano on what was then a brand new Multistrada 1200 S, one of the first off the production line at Bologna, and rode through Greece, Bulgaria, Romania, Belgium, eastern and northern Europe, sustained along the way by the warm hospitality of local owners clubs - especially one lady from the Ducati Club of Moscow, who rode with him for three weeks across freezing Siberia.

Then on to Japan, where the bike was checked in for its second service at 24 000km, China and the Asian Ducati Week event at Sepang over the weekend of the Malaysian MotoGP - where Pirozzi realised a long-held dream by riding around the track with his hero, former World Superbike champion Troy Bayliss.

From Malaysia he rode across China to the Pakistani border (sounds easy when you say it quickly), then across Australia and Canada to the United States, where visits to owners clubs, Ducati events, and meetings with local celebrities were laid on at about 700km intervals - to say nothing of media everywhere who wanted the story.

While Pirozzi was in Miami, Ducati organised a memorable birthday party by flying his mother from Italy to celebrate with him, while in Las Vegas, November 8 will forever be celebrated among Ducatisti as the official "Paolo Pirozzi Day".

After all that, Pirozzi needed a few days to recover in Mexico before riding through Costa Rica, Honduras, Panama, Colombia, Peru, Chile, Argentina and Tierra del Fuego to Ushuaia, the southernmost inhabited place on earth (amd one of the coldest).

Then Pirozzi and Lidia returned to Europe, visiting England, France, Portugal, Morocco (his only destination in Africa)and Spain, before crossing the finish line at Imola.

And now? This intrepid traveller from Naples is already planning his next big trip, which will take him to half a million kilometres by the World Ducati Week in 2012.

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