A Tale of Two Guzzis

This is Moto Guzzi’s 90th year (at least for another couple weeks), and it was nearly a year ago that my good friend Melissa MacCaull, Senior Marketing Manager at Piaggio, asked me to write a blog in celebration of this milestone. As some may know though, my home burned to the ground on Dec 23, 2010, and recovering from that has dominated most of my attention in 2011. However, having finally moved into our new house on Thanksgiving Day, I can turn my focus to some of the many things I have let slide thru the course of this year. A side benefit of this delay is that I also added another Moto Guzzi to my collection, so I have even more to blog about!

In truth, I have historically been a BMW guy. They’re somewhat out of the ordinary, incredibly reliable and have a long, rich history. I really didn’t know that much about Moto Guzzi until I had the opportunity to visit the factory and museum in Mandello del Lario to shoot a segment for the TV show Corbin’s Ride On in 2006.

I was blown away! The place was absolutely dripping with history, being the site of Moto Guzzi production since their beginning in 1921; two years earlier than BMW! The museum was really impressive too, chronicling a long history of innovation and craftsmanship.

I became hooked on Guzzis tho when I went from the factory down to Catania, Sicily where there was a Breva 1100 waiting for me. There was also a Nevada 750 for my son, Sam, and a Griso for my friend and motorcycle photojournalist, Neale Bayly. We rode Sicily for four days and shot an episode of Trippin’ on Two Wheels. During this time I really grew to love the sound and feel of these bikes; and this from a Beemer guy!

There are actually a lot of similarities between Beemers and Guzzis, but while BMW’s claim to fame is rooted in German left-brained precision, Guzzis really seem to have a soul and the V-twin engine is akin to a beating heart. I knew I had to have one, and I started my search as soon as I got back to the States.

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December 22, 2011 | CATEGORY: General

On Thursday I leave for Moab, UT for the first shoot of the 2010 production season and from that point on, I’m pretty much traveling every week till about mid November. However, this past weekend wasn’t booked with MCC activities and I wanted to make the most of it so I invited my brother, Guy, to come down from Indy and go motorcycling with me. After all, I had spent all that time getting my Triumph Trophy running again, I figured I should get some benefit out of it.

Guy only lives three hours from me but we rarely see each other. It seems our schedules never coincide and we both have a lot going on. Life tends to be that way. However, this was something I’ve wanted to do for a long time so we decided to just pick a weekend, commit to it, and do this thing; rain or shine. That was the only way it was ever going to happen.

Dennis Gage & Guy

I’ve got two big, fairly modern touring bikes in my collection; the ’98 Trophy and a ’93 BMW R1100RS, and it looked like we were going to get lucky with the weather because the forecast was for a cool (highs in the 60’s) but clear weekend. So Guy drove down to E’ville Saturday morning and we suited up and were on the road about noon.

98 Trophy & 93 BMW R1100RS

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April 19, 2010 | CATEGORY: Events,Production,Television Show,Travel
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