Circa-1954 Ceccato 75cc Twin Cam

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Circa-1954 Ceccato 75cc Twin-Cam racer, one of five known.
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Drivetrain case for the gear-driven camshafts dominates the engine’s right side.
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Bath tub stopper plugging the single 20mm Dell’Orto carburetor’s throat is a period touch.
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Owner Guy Webster and the Ceccato.

Critically acclaimed food author and television personality Anthony Bourdain would tell us that a steak cooked rare is a pretty common thing.

That’s why Bourdain, sometimes scootering around or riding in a sidecar on his show No Reservations, documents the lesser-known dishes available from around the globe — he’s often seen scarfing down morsels of food that would make the best of us shudder, including ant eggs, savory duck tongue and pig’s head fettuccine. Now, I’m no Anthony Bourdain, and this isn’t a tale about exotic food in a far-off locale, but what’s on offer here is something very delectable, very rare — and very exotic. The serving? Guy Webster’s Circa-1954 Ceccato 75cc Twin Cam Italian racer, the sole survivor of five classic Italian motorcycles produced in Pietro Ceccato’s factory on the outskirts of Vicenza, Italy, 38 miles west of Venice.

Beginnings of Ceccato

Born around 1900, Pietro Ceccato was the son of an aristocratic Italian family. His parents wanted him to become a pharmacist, and while he dutifully obliged, he was never really happy in this occupation. Always fascinated by things mechanical, in the mid-1930s Ceccato quit the pharmaceutical trade and opened a manufacturing facility, building industrial equipment including burners for bakery ovens, air compressors and gas station hardware.

At the end of World War II, Ceccato, like many budding Italian entrepreneurs, surveyed the transportation industry of post-war Italy and decided to build and market a clip-on engine for bicycles. Lightweight motorcycles were not far behind, and the company started looking into motorcycle racing. This is where the story gets interesting, because there’s a connection between Ceccato and Fabio Taglioni, one of Italy’s best-known motorcycle designers.

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