With the Giro d’Italia just around the corner and manufacturers launching their newest products, it’s interesting to look back at what the likes of Bartali and Gimondi were racing on in their day

Campagnolo has released a neat video looking at the evolution of its rear mechs starting with the Cambio Corsa – four speeds and changes effected by pulling two separate levers on the seatstays whilst pedalling backwards.

Next came downtube shifters and a derailleur gear in 1951, followed in quick succession by a complete groupset in 1963, ten-speed and 11-speed.

>>> Icons of cycling: the Campagnolo tool case

Of course it’s all about the Campag heritage, but it’s interesting to see just what the champions of yesteryear were using to haul themselves up mountains – and pretty amazing that they managed it at all.

The number of professional teams now using Campagnolo is much lower than those using Shimano, but this look back at the Italian brand’s heritage shows how it is able to continue innovating in a tougher market.

Campag is also the choice of many amateurs, particularly those on Italian brand frames, who want to set themselves apart from the sea of Ultegra on their local club run.