Ernesto Colnago is 80 today and has celebrated his birthday with a special limited edition bike that is set to become a collectors' item.

The special bike is called the C59 Ottanta - which means eighty in Italian and has a gold finish. It was inspired by the iconic Colnago bikes of the past that were used so successfully by so many legendary professional riders and loved by thousands of cyclists around the world.

The C59 Ottanta has Master-like arabesque lug decorations and Ernesto Colnago's signature, yet is made from the best possible carbon fibre and fitted with Campagnolo Super Record EPS 11s electronic components.

Colnago is known for its iconic ace of clubs logo but the C59 Ottanta has a special head badge: the original 'Eagle and Arrow' logo that was created in 1954 inspired by a headline in the local newspaper that described Colnago as fast as an arrow when he won a race.

Just 80 examples of this very special limited edition bike will be made and 20 have already been snapped up by collectors around the world.

Despite turning 80, Colnago was busy in his office in Cambiago, preferring to work than celebrate his birthday. He is still the first to arrive at the Colnago offices, just across the street from his home and is always the last to leave. Most people are happily retired at 80 but Colnago does not intend to retire just yet.

"My 80th birthday is an intermediate sprint, it's the not the finish of my race. I still love to work and create new bikes. I don't want a cake or a big party, the special bike is my way of sharing my birthday," he said.