Franco Farnè

Franco Farné is a name that has accompanied Ducati and all of its motorcycles for the past 50 years. When Fabio Taglioni arrived and revolutionised Ducati’s technique, Farné had already professionally raced the Cucciolo and was working as a mechanic in the factory, taking the place of his mother who had been an employee in Ducati before him.

A young rider of great hopes, Franco Farnè was already in the Ducati team at the 1955 Motogiro and was junior Italian champion with Ducati in the 100 and 125 cc classes; in 1959 Farnè was one of the first Italian drivers to win (again in the 125 category) on the old dirt track at Daytona. Following an accident, he began his career as a test rider and mechanic in the early 1960s, becoming essential for all Ducati’s motorcycles and for Ducati’s great successes over a period of time from the Gran Sport "Marianna" to the 999.

From Paul Smart's victory at the Imola 200 Mile race, to Mike Hailwood's triumphant return to Ducati from the Isle of Man, to his successes at the 24 Horas de Montjuic in Barcelona, Franco was part of the small core of people who kept the racing department alive in the not-so-easy 1970s. With the support of the NCR stable, made up of specialists such as Giorgio Nepoti and Rino Caracchi, endurance racing bikes were prepared almost clandestinely outside the Works.

In the 1980s and 1990s, Farnè's contribution was crucial to the racing department for the development of the 4-valve engine until, in 1999, after nearly fifty years dedicated to the Ducati, it was time for retirement, but not for his inactivity. In fact, he continued to work with Ducati's private teams until about 2008.

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