Goodbye Rino Caracchi - the C in NCR | Ductalk: What's Up In The World Of Ducati |

photo and story: Vicki Smith


The garage of Rino Caracchi is empty today.  Looking thru the photos I have taken there over the years it’s possible to tell which of the many visits it was by the bike on the work bench, but really, not much else ever changed. The always on TV in the ceiling, the well-organized parts and tools, bicycles hung from the ceiling on pulleys, Bologna sunlight filtering in thru the high window, and of course Rino, quietly working away.  This was the workshop of a master tuner.


Rino Caracchi was a world class mechanic, who with his friends Giorgio Nepoti and Franco Farne, for over 30 years influenced Ducati racing history.  Ducati didn’t compete officially in racing in the 1970’s so they entrusted the program to the NCR race shop, just 10 minutes away.  When Paul Smart won at Imola in 1972, Rino, Giorgio and Franco were there.  Mike Hailwood at the Isle of Man, they were there.  They believed that everything could always be lighter, faster, better. And they always seemed to find a way to do it.  First race use of the quick-change wheel? Team NCR.


NCR was the satellite team that often was the only team. The partnership between Ducati and NCR was an important part of the company that Ducati is today - a company that builds bikes better because it races.


Of the three men, Rino was the last one still at his work bench.  Yesterday, the light turned off for good in Rino’s garage.  Team NCR is back together again.  Heaven just got itself a hell of a tuner….