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by the level crossings of the Swiss Railway system, a great asset for

transporting the “  - perhaps from Italy or the more distant Cantons

- but unlikely to please top class professionals on a high-profile pay day!

Faccoli’s eventual solution to this dilemma was quite innovative; a 9.7mile

“closed” circuit to be covered five times, giving a 48.4mile event. The circuit

(see diagram) was also intended to be a technical challenge and was

provided with a fine “signature” hill, just as the Lugano World’s road circuit

would be with the Crespera climb three years later.

The Sorengo was a steep triple switchback, rising for 200ft at 8% gradient
from the start/finish area near Lugano town centre, eventually reaching
the highest point on the course. The following 330ft plunge - a full mile at
6% gradient - took the course down to lake level at Agnuzzo - close to the
city airport - another location to be made famous by the 1953 “Coppi
World’s”. The road then continued level via Carabietta before returning
northward at Casoro, passing terraced vineyards and luxury villas on the
lakeside slopes along the way. At Cadepiano the road continued along a
broad valley floor close to the impressive church of San Carlo, sometimes
seen on videos of the race and on Google Maps. The final stretch then
passed behind Lugano’s Mt. San Salvatore landmark at Fornaci, before
dipping into the aptly named Paradiso district and climbing gradually to
the start/finish area by the Loreto neighbourhood school.

So how was all this high-class sporting entertainment to be financed? The

first major sponsors were the Vanini brothers, co-owners of a chain of

café/confectioners’ shops in Ticino and well known as local makers of the

famous Italian celebratory    (big bread) loaf. The first five editions

of the race were then rather grandly known as the Gran Premio Panettone

Vanini, or “        for short! Additional funds came from charging admission

to the circuit, either by cashier’s gates providing access to an extended

start/finish area and grandstand, or by tickets bought in advance. The race

history mentions the first “  as being a bit hand-to-mouth in this

respect, with the event’s management being seated at the

café/clubroom in the centre of Lugano. As the rider’s prize and appearance

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