Ridin' Around with John Boettcher

I went to my first “Slimey Crud” Rally, and I really wasn't sure what to expect. I heard about it on the MGCL (Moto Guzzi Correspondence List via the Internet) and wanted to check it out. A bunch of us met at MG Cycle in Brooklyn, Wisconsin around 9:30 A.M. on a nice Sunday morning in May. Owners Gordon Kline and Rick Mahnke had the place open for coffee and such. There was a healthy mix of Guzzis there. Joe Rybecek and Dave Jackson had their Falcones. What a beautiful pair of bacon slicers. There were also a couple of EVs, T-3s, Eldos, Ambos and on and on.

We rode out on a scenic route to Kitt's Korner in the small town of Pine Bluff. It was early, but already a crowd of about 500 was there. There was a wide variety of bikes of all makes and models including a few Vincents, one Munch Mammoth, and even a war Beemer pulling a cannon!

I hooked up with Peter Egan of Cycle World fame and his friend, Paul Roberts, who owns the Ducati that Peter has pictured at the header of his Cycle World column. The next stop was Sprecher's Tap in Leland, Wisconsin about 50 miles away so I asked Paul if he and Peter would mind if I tagged along with them. He said it was cool. Peter had his mint 1951 Vincent Black Lightning, which had a unique and loud rumbling exhaust tone. We took some of the rustic roads, and it was great to see Peter ride the Vincent like it was meant to be ridden. It was hard for my T-3 to keep up! He had to have been close to the 90 mph mark a few times. We were blasting around over rolling hills, great sweepers and country roads with the sun shining and blue skies. 

Sprecher's Tap filled up fast. Rick (aka Cheesehead) Mahnke helped out as the celebrity bartender. I hung around for a while, checking out all the bikes that I didn't see over at Kitt's Korner.

I took the long way home, going east on Wisconsin Highway 60 through Lodi and out towards Watertown, on county roads through Whitewater, and eventually back home. I'm looking forward to the next one.

In May I went down to the Louisiana Moto Guzzi Rally to pick up a 1973 Eldorado I just purchased. The first day took a bit of tinkering but I got it running well enough for the poker run and a trip to Bossier City for a bit of casino action. I also covered most of the  back roads within a 75 mile radius of the rally, including the spot where Bonnie and Clyde were gunned down. There were cool bayous and the weather was perfect. Around 90 degrees and constant sunshine. Yvonne and William Griffith (MGNOC Louisiana Reps) host a great rally! Most of the food was freshly cooked, including the rolls and biscuits. The crawfish boil was great. I must have had seven or


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Contact John at:  ratguzzi@hotmail.com