logo piaggio wide




(Symbolic images of Moto Guzzi in the States. Frames taken from the video “The longest road – Aftermovie”, journey with Moto Guzzi California from New York to Alaska, and more:


The home page of the MGNOC website:

February 2024By Frank D. Wedge, MGNOC Director: “The MGNOC (Moto Guzzi National Owners Club) is an international club for Moto Guzzi owners and enthusiasts. All 50 states are represented, also several provinces in Canada and several other countries. The MGNOC supports and cooperates with others in providing 30 or more Moto Guzzi rallies every year. In addition, we sponsor several smaller gatherings, which provide opportunities to kick tires and to enjoy Moto Guzzi camaraderie.


Our main instrument of communication is our monthly newsletter. Our monthly newsletter generally consists of 36 to 44 pages. In November 2009, we went from publishing the newsletter on paper to offering it via the internet. The print shop costs, and Uncle Sam’s postal service costs became burdensome. Newsletter articles include technical information, touring, racing, and road tests about current and past models. News covering various subjects of interest to Moto Guzzi owners is often found within the monthly newsletters.
The MGNOC is a small club compared to some, but the members are very devoted to the marque and most are active motorcyclists who probably ride more miles in an average year than many motorcyclists. We have our own webpage (since about 1997). We’ve come a long way when one considers how the club actually came to life.


Very late in the year of 1970, a motorcycle magazine by the name of Motorcycle World (now defunct), printed a letter written by a fellow who was about to take delivery on a brand new 1970 750 cc Moto Guzzi Ambassador. The new owner, Dennis Sterlace, had written the magazine asking readers to share their experiences about their Moto Guzzi, what they considered the pros and cons. I wrote to Dennis and we began exchanging letters. After actively corresponding for a month or more, we decided to try to get a Moto Guzzi correspondence club going. Dennis lived in Lackawanna, New York, and I lived in the tiny town of Sylvan Grove, Kansas. I wrote a letter to Road Rider Magazine. Road Rider printed my letter, which requested interested Moto Guzzi owners to contact either Dennis or me. Letters (although small in numbers, at first) began coming in from all parts of the United States and from Canada.

Vintage advertisings, United States, ‘70s.

“At the end of the 1960s, Moto Guzzi presented the 90° V-twin engine that was to become the very symbol of Moto Guzzi itself. This powerplant was used as the basis for models such as the Guzzi V7, the V7 Special and yet another legend, the Guzzi V7 Sport. The glorious twin cylinder was also produced in a smaller engine capacity with the V35 and V50 variants. The Gran Turismo par excellence was the Moto Guzzi California, which evolved to include electronic injection and a triple-disc integral braking system. Dedicated to the US market, together with the Ambassador and Eldorado variants, the California boasted the classic 850 cc engine capacity, a displacement that has since been rediscovered and brought back into the current range. Models like the Le Mans, Daytona, Centauro and Sport 1100 kept the sports heritage of the marque alive. The unmistakable style and character of these bikes came blazing back into fashion in the 1990s with the new California, Nevada and V11 Sport series.” (Source: Moto Guzzi history press release; MG 100 years, 1921- 2021).

In the beginning, our only contact was through letters via mail. Gradually, our numbers grew to the point that we wanted a newsletter to keep everyone advised. A member in New Orleans (Wayne Hallstead) volunteered to produce a newsletter; so, he published a small paper for a few months. Eventually the labor of love was passed onto me and my first issue was published in May of 1973. It was only an eight-page issue sent to approximately 200 to 300 people.

Memories: some covers of the MGNOC printed newsletters collection, ’80s and ’90s.

The first newsletter I produced was accomplished with a ten-dollar, used, portable typewriter. Crude. I eventually wore that first typewriter out and, over the years, I managed to finish off a few other typewriters until, in 1983, we bought our first computer, an original PC by IBM. When I purchased the ten-dollar typewriter, I could not have imagined buying that first computer.
What I find most interesting, even after so many years, is that there was no address listed with Dennis’ letter that was published in the magazine. At that time, I lived in a tiny town of 400 people; so, I thought perhaps Dennis also lived in a small town. In the small town of Sylvan Grove, the mail carrier and postmaster knew everyone in town, so no problem receiving mail without street address or box number. I finished off my hand-written letter (didn't own a typewriter then) and addressed the envelope to Dennis Sterlace, Lackawanna, New York, as published in the magazine. That was it! Before I mailed the envelope, I was curious about the size of Lackawanna, so I looked in my Rand McNally road atlas. I found that Lackawanna, New York, had a population of 34,000 people! (Recently I googled Lackawanna’s current population at 20,000.) I already had the letter in the envelope; so, I put a six-cent stamp on it as I felt there wasn’t much I could lose by going ahead and sending it. To my surprise, less than two weeks later, I received a reply from Dennis. This was the beginning of the MGNOC! Today a single postal stamp is 63 cents (going to 66 cents in July). Ugh.

From left, Frank and Jack, June 2008; Iowa National, July 2014. Photo courtesy.

Luckily for us, the postal service was functioning in an above-and-beyond-the-call-of-duty manner and Dennis received my letter. The seed was planted and, within a few weeks, our Moto Guzzi club had officially begun. I later found out from Dennis that when the envelope arrived without a proper address, a postal employee showed the envelope to some of the mail carriers. One mail carrier recognized the name as a resident on his route. Dennis was one guy you didn’t forget easily – he stood six feet tall, had a full black beard, and weighed 300 pounds.

From left, “V-700 first tour in 1968”; “Junior has been to 15 states”. Photo courtesy.

Now, 52 years later, I sometimes think back at how everything fell into place so that Dennis and I were able to start up the Moto Guzzi National Owners Club. We’re a friendly group, we welcome any and all to attend our rallies and join the club. People who ride other brands of motorcycles often comment on how much they enjoy attending our laidback, family-style rallies; so, we invite others to visit us at our various activities throughout the United States and Canada.

From left, “Family car” (1972, Moto Guzzi V7 Ambassador); “Frank & Mary Jo ’95, 11,500 feet” (photo courtesy).

The first Moto Guzzi I saw was in 1967 at a Hill Climb in Topeka, Kansas. I saw this motorcycle that had a strange looking engine go putting by quietly. A year or so later, the company I worked for at the time sent me to Hays, Kansas, 200 miles away. At that time, I was riding my beloved 1965 750 (twin carb) Norton Atlas, while yearning for a R69S BMW, and expected to trade the Norton in on one of those. However, there was a Moto Guzzi dealer in Hays, only a tiny walk from where I was employed. This motorcycle shop not only sold Moto Guzzi, but was a Norton and Ducati dealer. The dealer, Don Kitchen (AKA Uncle Kitch), and I quickly became friends. Don quickly convinced me that a Moto Guzzi was the best of the best. I traded the Norton in on the Guzzi. As I pushed the 1968 V-700 out of the building and to the parking area, Uncle Kitch told me, ‘The Norton is faster, but the Guzzi will get you there quicker!’

From left, 2002 V11 Le Mans; 2005, Frank astride the MG V11 Le Mans (photo courtesy).

Since that day in April 1968, I’ve owned 31 Moto Guzzis (not counting a dozen or more that I officially owned, but didn’t ride, having acquired them to sell). I’ve ridden my Moto Guzzis through 44 of the 50 U.S. states, travelled through beautiful Canada a couple thousand miles, and rode Moto Guzzi in the United Kingdom and parts of western Europe for a grand total of over 650,000 miles. About half of what I travelled in the U.S. and Canada, my wife of 64 years sat behind me. She still sits back there for local rides of 100-plus miles.

From left, 2008; “Caress in sidecar” (photo courtesy).

At 82 years old, I’m still riding on trips. Not doing thousand-mile days anymore, but still able to knock off 600-plus miles. A few years back when I was 69 years old, I left John Day, Oregon, at 9:17 P.M. John Day time and rode all night and all day the next day into the dark, stopping only for gasoline and a pit stop. My little dog rode in the tank bag. That was a total of 1,425 miles one way in less than 24 hours. Along the way, and 35 miles from home, a policeman stopped me for doing 38 mph in a 20-mile zone. I cried on his shoulder, telling him I was tired and anxious to get home. He let me go!
In June, my granddaughter (on her 2000 Jackal) and I will attend our National Rally in John Day, Oregon, a 2,600 mile round trip ride. I’ll be a tad older by then. Looking forward to meeting old friends and making some new ones.” – FRANK D. WEDGE.

From left, “Dolce on California III”; “Guzzi boots”; “Fun T-shirt” (photo courtesy).


(Our thanks for kind collaboration to Frank D. Wedge, founder and Director/Editor of MGNOC, and to his daughter Debra Colglazier, responsible for production and layout of MGNOC and for putting out the monthly newsletter. And thanks to all the ‘Guzzisti’ in the club for loving Italian motorbikes so much). We look forward to seeing them all at the:

(Images of background of this article: Moto Guzzi in Daytona Beach, Florida, USA; source: Motoplex Daytona facebook).