Italian team to tackle tough Mexican 1000 rally raid on Vespas

A plucky Italian team is attempting to complete the 2020 Mexican 1000 rally raid event on a pair of minimally-kitted out Vespas

Tutto Mondo Racing - Vespa

Rally raids are designed to be tough, whether we’re talking about the gruellingly long Dakar Rally or a more manageable but still challenging local event.

A test of skill and endurance for both man and machine, the competitor needs to remain sharp and his equipment reliable to simply reach the finish line.

With this in mind, it’s little surprise off-road focused ADV motorcycles are perceived as being the only viable choice for an event like the 2020 Yokohama NORRA Mexican 1000, a cross-country event spanning 1000 miles over some tough terrain.

Which is what makes one of the entries stand right out because not only are the Tutto Mondo Racing team planning to compete without a dedicated off-road machine at its disposal, it’s going all the way down to moped territory by running a pair of Vespas. Yes, this very humble looking Vespa.

Baffling though it may look on paper, there is some method to what appears complete madness since Vespas were used on the Mexican 1000 – dubbed the ‘the happiest race in the world’ – during the 1970s.

So it’s a trip down memory lane for Leonardo Pilati – a Vespa racer - and Pietro Bologna – the Sports Director of the Vespa Club of Italy – but it doesn’t quite excuse the fact they will need to travel 1000 miles on Vespas across some inhospitable terrain.

Modifications have been made to provide knobby tyres, skid plates and better shocks, but they are attempting to reach the finish line without requiring too much non-stock assistance.

The event takes place on April 17 – 24 and we will be paying close attention to their fortunes…