The motorcycles that have been beautifully restored by GIANNI MINISINI have been featured often in the pages of this magazine, most recently in our last issue with his 250cc Sertum. Just days before we went to press with that story, Gianni passed away suddenly. He was 65 years old. Born in 1952 in Pagnacco, Province of Friuli, Italy; Gianni and his family immigrated to Australia when he was 15 and settled in Adelaide. Working hard since very young, nothing was too difficult or beneath him. If he didn’t know how to do something, he taught himself. Gianni often thought of himself as academically inferior due to lack of schooling, however his technical and logical knowledge was in a league of his own. Restoring vehicles and motorcycles came as second nature, machining unobtainable parts on a lathe, painting tanks and parts and welding aluminium were just some of his endless talents. Working as a mechanic throughout his life, Gianni opened his own business in 1985 together with his wife, Vivien, specialising in servicing Hondas. Cars may have been his business, however, motorcycles were his passion. A couple of trips back to his birthplace in the early 1990s resulted in acquiring examples of some famous Italian marques; Gilera, Moto Guzzi, Sertum, MV Agusta and Bianchi – all of which he meticulously restored to as-new condition. Gianni’s workmanship and attention to detail was second to none, but he was an intensely private and humble man and was almost embarrassed by the attention he received whenever he trotted out one of his bikes. He and Vivien were also keen motorcyclists on a variety of modern machines including Triumphs and Harleys, and often rode to Phillip Island for Moto GP. To Vivien, daughter Giulia and son-in-law Pedro, we extend our deepest sympathies.
Footnote: Our files still contain two more of Gianni’s restorations, and you will see those in future issues.