Ducati People

Episode 4
Andrea Rossi

Andrea is enthusiastic and cheerful; he's capable of taking the energy that motorbikes give him, an energy that he also gives to the biking world, and spreading it all around him. All with a touch of Tuscan authenticity that makes him even more warm-hearted, easy going and the perfect example of the great results that can be achieved on a motorbike. Because Andrea Rossi, an enduro and rally rider with the desire to see the world on a motorbike, began his collaboration with Ducati a few years ago in different areas and activities to make all his off-road experiences available to others. 

On a beautiful day under the Tuscan sky while taking in the herbal fragrances of his grandparents' old country house, where his first memories with motorbikes are rooted, Andrea told us about what his passion for Ducati means. He also told us about how his historical love for competitions, dirt roads and the journey in its purest sense have led him to realise the dream of collaborating with the brand that won his heart. 

How would you introduce yourself to those who don't know you?

My name is Andrea Rossi and I call myself a 360° biker. Riding on a motorbike is something that I've been doing all my life. And I don't think I'll ever stop!

Tell us how your collaboration with Ducati started.

I have always dreamed of being able to work for Ducati. That's precisely why I chose to study in Bologna instead of Florence; the latter would have been easier and more convenient for me. Destiny, however, wanted me to reach Ducati in a completely different way: through competitions. In 2013, after an important international rally race, I was contacted and from there started what I call a real "work of passion".

What does being a Ducatista mean to you?

To me it means so much more than riding a motorbike. It means living and feeling all the passion and the Italian spirit that Ducati encapsulates. It means feeling part of a great story deeply rooted in 90 years of excellence and success.

Tell us about the areas you're involved in with Ducati.

I was the lead instructor at the DRE Enduro Academy and I helped organise Ducati's dynamic off-road events. Furthermore, I had the pleasure and responsibility of collaborating as a tester during the development of new models by participating in dynamic test sessions with prototype vehicles. It was truly an honour to use my experience to help create the Ducati of the future.

What was the most satisfying part of being an instructor?

The major satisfaction is linked to the opportunity to teach other Ducatistas to go off-road, venturing off the paved tracks: for me it means allowing bikers to really discover "a new world"!

Where did this love for motorbikes come from?

I inherited this passion from my father. When I was very young, he used to take me on short motorbike rides, putting me on the tank because I was too young to sit behind. I have very vivid memories: clinging to the fuel cap's tab, the vibrations, the wind in my hair... I couldn't help but fall in love with this world! My uncle then gave me a small electric motorbike. Then one day, I saw the advertisement for a "real" mini-motorbike in a newspaper. I wanted it more than anything else. I tormented my parents until they bought it for me and it was with this mini-bike that I started exploring the fields behind my grandparents' house. It's really curious how that game ended up becoming my job!

The open spaces and off-road tracks won you over very soon.

Yes, I remember that as a child I often drove on a dirt track behind my house and every extra metre I covered seemed like a great achievement to me. I clearly remember the feelings of adventure and discovery that I felt. Then, that dirt track ended and a paved road began. It was a great disappointment because, in my mind, that track should never have ended but, at the same time, I had the desire to find another dirt track to discover.

Being in contact with nature and in the open air has always been important for me, which is why I chose the rally as a type of competition: even during the race I had to feel like I was living a bit of an “adventure"!

Tell us about your idea of travel.

Well, first of all it's on a motorbike. And then there's the feeling of discovery, which is fundamental for me. In this regard I haven't changed since I was a child. As a child I felt like an explorer in the countryside behind my house. Today I can venture over to the other side of the world. And the feelings remain the same! A motorbike like the Ducati Multistrada 1260 Enduro, for example, offers those who love to travel all they need in terms of technology, fun and reliability. And on the other hand the bike is the ideal way to travel in this spirit, because it really exposes you to the world around you, to its weather and its smells. Ultimately, it pushes you to always get involved in every situation. 

Is there a journey that you feel more tied to than others?

I've undertaken a lot of motorbike trips: North Cape, Namibia, Laos, India... but in the end I am very fond of the first trip. In reality with a destination very close to home: the Island of Elba. I was 16 and with a Motard. It was the first time that I felt great. And free.

How do you prepare to leave?

I like to define my ideal journey as "an organised disorganisation"; I prepare everything I need and that could be useful, but without planning stages and times. Because often it’s the place that chooses you and not you that choose the place... This implies also having to face the unexpected. But in the end, on a journey, the unexpected is what I like best!

What did the competitions, travelling and all your experiences on the bike teach you?

What I've learned is that we have to follow what we feel, our emotions. Because the decisions that may seem strange today will prove to be right tomorrow, taking on a greater sense of meaning. Like dots on a map that join together and show us the direction of our personal track. Or rather, our off-road track!

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