2013 | Cinelli HoBootleg


I have been collaborating with Cinelli since 2006 with a special focus on the Cinelli Bootleg line. In 2012, after experiencing the Tour d’Afrique on the Bootleg racing Rats with an aluminium frame, I began to conceive of a new adventure Bootleg, a steel frame suited for a long-haul journey.

After the steel frame HoBootleg design was accepted, I worked together with Fabrizio Aghito and the Columbus Team at the engineering phase of the final product. I personally tested the first Cinelli HoBootleg prototype at Tour d’Afrique 2013.

The test was great. The bike frame relented to the diverse African terrain, making the ride smooth and gentle, yet it was fast and reactive enough to enjoy the ride. The HoBootleg proved to have the comfort of a touring bike and the flexibility of a cycle cross bike; in short, the perfect adventure bike. I am extremely inspired by the Cinelli HoBootleg project. The HoBootleg is more than a bicycle. It represents how design can connect people to nature. People in many parts of the world are rediscovering outdoor adventure and sport, and the Cinelli HoBootleg is part of this movement.


Since the first HoBootleg prototype was made, many courageous explorers have been riding the HoBootleg to the remotest corners of the world and back. In less than three years, more than 100,000 kms of road, dirt and sand have been explored by HoBootleg adventurers, a Guinness World Record has been set (Paola Gianotti, 2015), and countless, breathtaking moments witnessing the beauty of our planet have been experienced.

This is absolutely the greatest reward I’m still having from this project.

The test ride at Tour d’Afrique 2013 was part of the “Lucas Brunelle Goes to Africa” movie (filmed by Lucas Brunelle and edited by Benny Zenga).

The Cinelli HoBootleg was conceived in the deserts of Africa and designed in the Columbus Lab with optimal performance for any terrain in mind. Columbus’ unrivaled steel has enabled the Cinelli design team to craft a frame with the perfect balance between strength, weight and comfort. Additionally, thanks to a properly applied rust-treatment, the Cinelli HoBootleg frame-set has an almost unlimited fatigue resistance. More info here.




Concept and Design: Dario Toso

Project development and manufacturing: Gruppo, Srl