Friday, 14 September 2012

Moto Guzzi win Gold at the Olympics

Checking over the last piece of La Cicciolina, the tale of riding a Moto Guzzi Lodola in the Dolomites, for Benzina #10 (out within a month, promise) I came across something I've not heard before - "In Mandello they still speak of the Moto Guzzi factory rowing eight who went to England in 1948 as the Italian national eight and won the Gold Medal at the Olympic Games."
Whoa - I knew Guzzi had an active rowing club (one of the upsides of building motorcycles on the edge of a lake) but winning Gold at the Olympics? A few prods at Mr Google turned up a blog worshiping at the altar of the London 2012 Olympic rowing events and this photo taken at London 2012: Giuseppe Moioli and Franco Faggi of the 1948 Olympic Champion Coxless-Four. They were young workers at the Guzzi motorcycle factory near Lake Como and in the aftermath of World War II, these two men with their team-mates and coach went on to dominate international rowing for nearly a decade. Even though they went unrecognized by most at Eton-Dorney during the Olympics this year, they are still gods in Italy and another reminder of how extraordinarily difficult it has always been to become an Olympian.

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