The Wingedstore.com staff met up with Cinelli Bootleg Ambassador Dario Toso, currently living and working in Seattle, to talk about the new Bootleg Hobo.
TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF?
My name is Dario Toso. I was born in Turin in 1981. When I was a child I spent a lot of time drawing and playing in the natural environment. My family has a small house in the Alps and since my youth I have been skiing, hiking and riding bicycles in the mountains. My father gave me a MTB as a gift when I was 10 years old. It was amazing, I felt free for the first time. That bike gave me the possibility to go out of my boundaries. I remember endless days spent with my old friends racing down trails without any protection, no helmet or anything. I love the alpine environment and consider it my real home. When I grew up I studied industrial design with a specific orientation in sustainability. Now I'm spending a research period at the University of Washington in Seattle working on alternative water filtration systems. I have brought my Cinelli Hobo with me to explore the Northwest Coastal territories and it’s been amazing to say the least.
WHAT ABOUT YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH CINELLI?
Thanks to research work on the Cinelli Laser in 2006 I met Antonio and the Cinelli family when I was still a student. At that time I had just converted my urban bicycle into a track bike (a Columbus steel frame painted white in honor of the Provos and John Lennon). I was totally enraptured by the Bootleg concept. It represents exactly the way I perceive the bicycle, not made to race, but to explore the outer and inner world. With this I became a Cinelli Bootleg Ambassador.
CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THE CINELLI HOBO PROJECT?
In 2010 I took a trip around Tanzania, a place that deeply moved me. I decided to go back for a second trip, this time with my bicycle in tow. Thanks to the Zenga Bros movie “Where Are You Go” I discovered the Tour d'Afrique. So I organized the participation of the Cinelli Bootleg for the “Tour d'Afrique 2012.” I took part in the section from Malawi and Zambia and up to Victoria Falls. I came back to Italy with the idea of a new version of the bootleg in mind: A steel frame suited for a long-haul journey. I've worked with Fabrizio Aghito and the Cinelli Team when the first Cinelli Hobo prototype was ready to be tested at Tour d'Afrique 2013.
I rode a short section in Ethiopia, and I came back to ride the last part of the Tour from Namibia to South Africa with Lucas Brunelle and Chas Christiansen. It was absolutely great to ride with them in Africa. Two good boys. Lucas is totally insane, he had the idea to ride down the dunes with the bikes. That was amazing. So was the night ride into the Savana and the crazy ride along the border of Fish Canyon. Chas was always the first to wake up and in a moment he was ready. I don’t really know how he managed to do that. He was deeply connected to the African mood.
I’ll never forget this scene: One morning I woke up early to see the sunrise on the Orange River which divides Namibia and South Africa and I saw Lucas tinkering with the camera. I walked over and he said, "Morning, I’m going to South Africa.” He put on his pants and began to walk into the river. When he was in the middle, the water was up to his shoulders...
This is the cycling lifestyle I try to embody, a combination of exploration and fun, with the company of good friends. The Hobo is a great traveling mate, faithful and sincere in its steel core, always ready to embark on a new adventure.
WHAT IS THE PERFECT RIDE?
My perfect ride consists of three things. Firstly, no time constrictions. I don't want to schedule when I have to come back home. Secondly, I prefer to ride surrounded by nature and explore new places. To finish it off, add in some good friends and a cold beer at the end of the day.
CAN YOU TELL US ABOUT THE HOBO ADVENTURES GEAR?
When Wingedstore.com asked me to design some products dedicated to the Cinelli Hobo I imagined a design that was dually useful and able to pass on the adventurous spirit I know it has. I decided to adopt the cup that I usually use on the alpine adventure. A really solid and safe design thanks to the snap-hook. The artwork represents the willingness of Cinelli to explore the world and expand your boundaries. Great attention was paid to the quality of tissues to reduce our environmental footprint, leading to our use of organic cotton. Additionally, the cap is double sided to extend its life span. Hope you will enjoy these products!
Head over to www.bootleg.it for more info
Photo Credit: Wendy Wees