Aspes has always had a brilliant sporting spirit, initially in motocross and later also in speed.
The central fulcrum of this activity was the Racing Department, whose manager was Roger Mace who came to Aspes from the legendary MV Agusta team, where he was in charge of the engine sector for motorcycles which had won many world titles.
In motocross, many young riders have been brought to the forefront, even in the international field, by Aspes, which has always adopted a policy of giving preference to young Italian riders, with the burden to let them acquire experience, rather than focus on well-known, perhaps foreign, riders.
This is how several riders emerged from the Aspes ranks including Felice Agostini, brother of the 15-time world champion Giacomo, who participated in the 1973 and 1974 world championships, Dario Nani in the 1975 world championship and Corrado Maddii in the world championships in 1976 and 1977, the year that Renato Zocchi also took to the course. In races in which it participated, the Aspes 125 proved to be very competitive, not far from the Rahier’s official Suzuki or Rond’s Yamaha. Don’t forget the place of honour won by Maddii in the Yugoslavia Grand Prix in 1977 after a tough battle with the world champion Suzuki-Rahier combination, or the thrilling third place in San Marino by Sergio Franco in 1973 behind the official Zündapp’s Schneider and Malherbe.
Other prestigious names in the off-road world started with the Aspes brand, among them the three-time Italian senior champion Ivan Alborghetti, or the Dakar driver Alessandro “Ciro” De Petri.
Aspes’ entry in Road Racing began in France, where the extremely fast Juma 125 Sport dominated the Criterium Promosport for production bikes in the 1975-76 biennium. Meanwhile, in Italy, the specialist Enrico Cereda won the Mountain Championship with a Juma 125.
Finally, in 1977, the Criterium Aspes Juma, a flagship tournament for young fans eager to try their hand a racing but held back by the high cost of motorcycling, was launched in Italy. The Criterium Juma was held for three seasons, from 1977 to 1979, and gave rise to young Italian motorcycling champions such as Loris Reggiani, Maurizio Vitali, Davide Tardozzi and Paolo Ferretti. Even when the Criterium ended, Aspes Juma continued to win and churn out champions in Formula TT for junior riders, such as Fausto Gresini and Ezio Gianola, to mention just a few.
One episode highlights the value of Aspes Juma for everyone. When the Criterium was first launched in 1977, the first test was an uphill race and the Italian Motorbike Federation (FMI) had not yet issued regulations for the Criterium, so the Sports Commissioner did not allow the creation of a separate class and Jumas were entered in the 125 Sports Class where Morbidelli and Malanca 125 twin-cylinders Grand Prix ridden by the best national specialists were also competing. Well, at the end of the day the first three places of the 125 Sport competition were held by three Aspes Juma bikes, before all the twin-cylinders in the race . By Maurizio Mazzoni
LIST OF ASPES MOTORBIKE CHAMPIONS
1973 - Italian Motocross Championship Cadet 125cc Class: 1st Felice Agostini on an Aspes
1974 - Italian Motocross Championship Junior 125cc Class: 2nd Felice Agostini on an Aspes
1975 - Italian Motocross Championship Junior 125cc Class: 2nd Dario Nani on an Aspes
1976 - Italian Motocross Championships Junior 125cc class: 1st Corrado Maddii on an Aspes
Italian Mountain Championship 125cc Class: 1st Enrico Cereda on an Aspes
1977 - Italian Motocross Championship Cadet 125cc Class: 1st Renato Zocchi on an Aspes
Italian Motocross Championship Senior 125cc Class: 2nd Corrado Maddii on an Aspes
Italian Kart Championship Prima-Super Category: 1st Andrea De Cesaris with an Aspes·Asco 125cc engine