the ultimate collection of ultimate bikes





                                                         Bill Nilsson 1932-2013

 On August 25, 2013 the motocross world lost one of the greats, Bill Nilsson. Bill pictured on the left was from Sweden and won the 500cc World Championship twice. Once (at the inception) in 1957 and again in 1960. We at were fortunate to meet Bill a couple of years ago when he and Sten Lundin (1959 and 1961 500cc World Champion) were traveling through Chicago. Bill was a real gentleman and a very funny guy. Motocross is very fortunate to have had a man like Bill Nilsson. Our good friend Luciano Costa (organizer of the now Imola MX reunion) sent and allowed us to post a brief letter and photos of the Champion Bill Nilsson. Please read below.


  August 25, 2013. Today the heart of Bill Nilsson has suddenly ceased to beat. This date will forever be remembered by the world of motorcycle racing as a bad day. With him went the father of the motocross world. The city of Imola will remember him forever as the one who knew how to inflame the minds of the sport with his great undertakings. Even today, walking in Mineral Waters Park in Imola, those who have had the honor and privilege to witness the great carousel of world motocross, examine clearly the figure of Bill fly beyond any reasonable limit, headlong without hesitation in the steep slopes of Monte Castellaccio conclude impossible feats by beating big rivals on the edge of the finish line. In his ears still ringing clear echo of the roar of its impetuous heavy and powerful motorcycles, driven with extraordinary determination and with incredible vehemence despite the disproportion with the small stature of its rider.

Up to his last days, Bill has never ceased to devote his energies to the restoration of vintage motorcycles, practiced with masterful experience and commitment. The recent photos of December 2012 taken in his workshop together with his friends on the occasion of the celebration of his 80th birthday, transpires clearly the passion for motorcycling accumulated in the course of his entire life. A few years ago he came to Imola for the exhibition-exchange CRAME in search of mechanical parts for the completion of its work.

In May 2010 and 2012, the city of Imola has had the honor of hosting this great champion with the illustrious ranks of the great names of the international motocross that made the legendary competitions of Imola and the world. Who has the privilege and pleasure to personally meet Bill Nilsson in those happy spring days, will remember him for his playful character, for his merry irony and self irony, but also for his humble and generous willingness to relate to all, qualities that make her even bigger figure. On 28 May last year, despite its difficulty walking with the aid of a crutch, Bill wanted at all costs to participate in a walk in the historic Mineral Waters Park in Imola along the traces of the old glorious track, together with great champions like Sten Lundin, Torsten Hallman, the brothers Derek and Donald Rickman, Otto Walz and Gunnar Johansson. Climbing uphill climb, step by step its character if indomitable fighter has allowed him to reach the summit of Mount Castellaccio. Who was with him saw his eyes shining, his face light up, perk up as his joy at the end of one of his greatest victories. Last we had greeted him with a "goodbye", but fate decided otherwise.

On behalf of myself and all the sports Imola, I extend to the family of Bill, and in particular to his son Jeff and his daughter Eva, my deepest condolences with the promise of giving birth to his figure in the next few events dedicated to the preservation of the large international motocross.

Luciano Costa