Probably most renowned for their dedication to their beards and having their own Lupato brothers branded socks – Alex and Denny Lopato are a mountain bike loving, travelling and racing duo from Northern Italy.
We caught up with the brothers in Sanremo, Italy, ahead of the first round of the Italian Superenduro race series and chatted about both their bikes and the race. Despite living just over 3 hours north of Sanremo in the Piedmont region of Italy (near the renowned Aosta valley), the brothers had never raced or properly ridden the tracks in Sanremo prior to the Superenduro. They're used to riding the soft dirt and loam on offer on their home turf rather than the sandy and rocky trails and sweltering heat of the Liguria region. We chatted to them both about how they’re getting on with the course and how they’re feeling about the upcoming race day.
Talking about their favourite tracks after practice it’s stage 1 and 3 that come out on top for the brothers. With stage 1 featuring a little bit of everything from pedalling, to technical to flowy sections it is a great all-round trail. Stage 3 is a little tighter, with a number of narrow switchbacks at the beginning, forcing you to have to work and pump with the bike to gain momentum.
Both the brothers are running coil sprung suspension front and back and the Lupato brothers are supported by Ohlins all round but with a little something extra; Andreani a suspension tuning company that means their Ohlins forks have a wider range of adjustability as well as transforming the damping of the forks. The main and large difference between the brothers despite running their bikes set up pretty much identically is that Denny rides a Trek Slash 29er frame, whereas Alex opted for the 27.5 Remedy. Breaking the mould for European riders, the brothers run their brakes moto style (front brake on the right, rear on the left).