Here is a series of my collection. I bought my first Merican, an Olympic, in 1971. Sold that one and bought a Professional in 1972. Then I had my first Mercian built for me in 1973. It was a Viggorelli, which got stolen en route. The replacement arrived in early 1974. I still have that bike. My brother rode it for years in the USA Nationals. I got it back about six years ago. I got my next Professional in 1977. Still have that one with over 184K miles. I keep that at my mom's home in Illinois, USA. I had a 1978 KOM until I sold that to a professor in 2002. Since then I have had three additional bikes built. A 2000 Prolugless, which I now use for Time Trials. A 2004 Prolugless, which my son keeps up and rides in Alabama. I use it when I see him. Finally I bought a Velocita in 2007. Unfortunately that bike got busted up when a roof rack failed. But, at that time I did not know that there was a huge 1cm hole in the downtube and raced it 125 miles from Brownsville Texas to Roma. Now would carbon, aluminum or even titanium hold up to a 210 pound rider... Needless to say, I sent it back and the shop did not recommend replacing, as it was out of alignment. Perfection... I rode it hands off, through sharp corners, up and down hills without problem. So I replaced with a 2009 with a Barber Pole. 408,000 miles on Mercians. I still have five, six if you include my wife's 1985 KOM.
I forgot to add that the 1974 Vigorelli is orginal paint. I raced it all on US and German Velodromes. My brother Dan, owner of Grand Performance Cycles in ST Paul Minnestota, raced it in US Nationals and, I belive the 1980 or 84 Olympic Trials. Tweet