The beginnings of Fernando Muñoz (1949-1968)

Born December 17th, 1949 in Darrical (Almería, southern Spain), moved to Pallejà (15 km near of Barcelona) with his parents and younger brother Pepe when he was 4 and lived there forever. From humble origins, he left school and started working very young like so many other teenagers of the 60s Spain. According to Ramon Costa, Costa’s motorcycle workshop and store was next to the restaurant Esteve in Molins de Rei, and the young Fernando worked there as waiter, but he loved motorcycles and was willing to race. He began working as mechanic with Costa and at the end the working day they used to take the bikes and trial into the neighboring Collserola mountains. That’s when Fernando said «That you do, I want to learn to do it too.» «And two years later he was champion of Spain!» Costa recalls. He had seen the boy with Andalusian accent of Pallejà was able to climb anything with his Derbi 49 three gear, the first bike owned by Fernando, and Costa did not hesitate to recommend him to the national team trial Bultaco.

Ramón Costa was the discoverer of the immense talent of Domingo Gris, another important motocross spanish champion, and also Fernando Muñoz, among others, and Don Paco Bultó, Bultaco’s general manager, was trusting his good eye to discover promising riders for Bultaco.

José Luis Merlos explains at number 60 of the magazine Moto Verde, published in July 1983, the first Muñoz’s contact with the racing world was the first edition of the Three Hours of Bassella, which began as a pretext for a barbecue among Bultaco crew, and later became a great reputation and even international racing event. There won the entire cast of Bultaco the racers Estanislao Soler and Ramón Costa. Joining them in the box, a young and shy boy with a white cap was the mechanic: it was Fernando. The show encouraged Fernando a lot and there was no Sunday without his participation in a pirate trial, but what he really liked was the motocross.

Randy and Costa

Randy and Domingo Gris

Every year in Molins de Rei, Costa was organizing a trial for amateurs and in 1968 Fernando Munoz participated. He attracted the attention of Don Paco Bultó, and invited him to participate in the trial of Sant Antoni, facing distributors, professional pilots and friends of the family Bultó. Costa lent him one of the first Sherpa five gear, completely different from the Derbi who had been his best companion, so some adjustment problems blocked him from exceeding the eighth score. In that trial, which was his first «legal» career has hired as professional racer for Bultaco. He worked all day at the factory and became his second home.

1967-To my friend Antonio