A Brief History of the Marque
Manufactured: Florence, 1972-1974
Fabrizio Guidotti of Fiesole, Florence, a former enduro rider, decided in 1970 to abandon racing and devote himself to the management of his mechanical workshop located near Florence.
At the request of friends he transformed two Romeo-Motodelta mopeds based on Romeo Fujihama prototypes, elaborating their chassis and engines to make them suitable for competition. On these machines the young riders Giancarlo Curradi and Sergio Franco performed creditably in the 50cc class of the Tuscan and Piedmont regional championships.
As a result, in 1971 there were many orders from privateers for converted Romeo Scorpion competition specials which delivered excellent performance, culminating with the second place of Aligi Deganello in the Tuscan championship.
These achievments did not escape the notice of Romeo's Edoardo Po who offered Guidotti a Romeo dealership in Florence, as well as logistical assistance for development. This gave Guidotti the financial resources to move to larger and better-equipped premises, while Romeo benefitted from this external racing department which displayed the marque's name in cross-country competitions.
In the latter half of 1971 various Romeo-Fabrizio 50s were produced for private riders using the Scorpion theme which, further modified, retained little of the original model. The engine, in fact, was developed by Guidotti with the impromptu technical assistance of Arteno Venturi, Vittorio Minarelli's right-hand man, while the chassis was constructed using top quality components from the likes of Verlicchi and Ceriani.
In 1972 competition success encouraged Guidotti to tackle the extremely competitive 125 class. Since Romeo produced exclusively 50cc machines, 125cc engines from Sachs and Zündapp were tested in the Scorpion chassis. This proved a difficult task, not least due to the lack of direct contact with the parent company.
The thirty Romeo-Fabrizio machines built with German 125cc engines showed a general mechanical fragility in competition.
Towards the end of the 1972 racing season Guidotti had the opportunity to observe the Aspes Hopi prototype raced by Felice Agostini, and was impressed by its performance and reliability. The ideal engine, therefore, was identified in that produced by the newly formed AsCo which, however, being division of Aspes, imposed as a condition for the supply of engines the removal of the Romeo brand as they were a competitor of Aspes in the moped sector. In the fashion of a true sportsman, Edoardo Po did not object.
Between the winter of 1972 and August 1974 about seventy Aspes-Fabrizio 125's were produced, which in the 1973 season achieved brilliant results with riders of the caliber of Corrado Maddii.
The following season, however, was disappointing due to the strong commitment in the cross-country field of many established marques including Beta and Gilera and, above all, the Japanese Suzuki and Yamaha, who made competition motorcycles with a price and quality not achievable by artisan producers lacking major resources for development and manufacture.
Aware of the situation, but reluctant to abandon the motor racing sector, at the end of 1974 Guidotti closed the company and accepted an invitation to join the Beta racing department with whom he remained until 1985, when he switched to motorcycle exhaust manufacturers Giannelli-Arrow. In 1987 he joined the Aprilia racing department where he worked until 2003.