Benelli 175 Bialbero
With Phil Aynsley
There isn’t much technical information of this Benelli but it is such a gem that I hope the pictures tell us the story!
This is one of only two or three 175 Bialbero (DOHC) race bikes constructed during 1931-34 and was raced by Dorino Serafini.
Antonio Benelli wasn’t old enough to join his other brothers, working in their motorcycle, car and gun repair business, but by the early 1920s became the racer of the family, promoting the capabilities of their own designs.
In 1927 Giuseppe Benelli designed a gear-driven SOHC 175 cc that allowed “Tonino” to win the company’s first international race the Monza Grand Prix as well as the ’27, ’28 and ‘30 175cc Italian Championships.
A redesign in 1931 saw a DOHC version take to the track to great success over the next few years. It was originally equipped with a three-speed hand gear change (as seen on this bike) but a four-speed foot change was employed in 1932.
The Bialbero went on to win GPs in France, Belgium, Holland and Switzerland before the FIM abolished the 175 cc class at the end of the 1934 season.
The 175 Bialbero made 15 hp at 9000 rpm and weighed just 93 kg, with a top speed of 140-150 km/h.