Stella canned | Historic Stella Alpina motorcycle rally cancelled after almost 60 years

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Europe’s highest motorcycle rally, the historic Stella Alpina, has been consigned to the history books after almost six continuous decades of running. 

Reportedly, Italian officials have insisted that in order for the event to continue, its organisers would have to adopt operational liability, meaning they would be responsible for the safety, wellbeing, registration and potential rescue of participants. 

Event organiser, Alberto Borello said: “It would mean being liable, civilly and criminally, for whatever happens. It would mean imposing a participation fee, which Mario has always refused.  

A family ascending the Colle del Sommeiller at the Stella Alpina rally

“Stella Alpina has always been about freedom and friendship, self-management.” 

Officially named the Stella Alpina Motociclistica Internazionale, the Stella Alpina was a free to attend, annual meet up and unpaved ride up the Colle del Sommeiller in Bardonecchia, Italy and had been organised largely by Turin rider, Mario Artusio throughout its history. 

The yearly event offered riders access to the highest motorable track in the Alps at 3009 meters and has a lineage dating back to 1966. Hundreds of bikers typically gathered every second weekend in July with an eclectic mix of machinery, from knobbly tyred enduros to sports bikes collectively tackling the mountain pass. 

Riders make their way up the Colle del Sommeiller

As well as offering breathtaking mountain views and the Sunday morning ascent of the Colle del Sommeiller, the festival was a chance to meetup with like-minded riders, with the party atmosphere being for many equally attractive as the ride itself. 

In light of the news, some former attendees have taken to social media to announce they still plan to visit the Italian location and maintain the spirit of the Stella Alpina, despite its formal cessation.