North Leicester Motorcycles Moto Morini's receivers have been persuaded to build up around 40 bikes from what remains at the factory, and then that's it - Morini are no more. The Italian government is flat broke and out of credit, so the wonderful people who made so much history are scattered to the four winds, together with their immeasurable talents.
Peter Crawford very kindly contributed the last ever English interview with Franco Lambertini to Benzina #4, and it's a poignant reminder that this lovely man was just 25 when he designed the Morini 350. One insight is that the narrow 72 degree angle of the V was chosen so that the design could easily be modified to produce a smaller single. Singles of course are what Morini are famous for - they nearly beat Honda and Jim Redman to the 1963 250 world championship with one, despite missing rounds. Once I'd read the interview with Franco I was so moved that I knew we had to tell the incredible story of how Provini so nearly achieved the impossible, and how with a better economic background Morini would be doing the same today. Lambertini was especially proud that most of the components for the current bikes were sourced within 100km of the factory, an incredible feat in a world where too many think the food we eat has to be flown in from across the globe
(top pic vespamore-uk.blogspot)