Guido Mentasti… un campione Guzzi -… the Guzzi champion
Lungo la strada Via Vallecamonica (di fronte al n.21), nei pressi del supermercato Simply (ex Cityper) e dalla parte del parco Badia si trova un cippo che ricorda un Campione motociclistico che il 7 settembre 1924, a bordo di una Guzzi 500 C4V (Corsa 4 Valvole) vinse il Campionato Europeo a Monza, nel 1923 vinse il “Motogiro d’Italia”, gara a tappe di 2500 Km, con partenza e arrivo a Milano (media del vincitore 49 Km/h). Aveva fama di rubacuori “delle giovani donne che seguivano le gare motociclistiche”. Il 5 aprile del 1925 il Mentasti tornando a Milano dopo aver partecipato al Circuito Motociclistico di Brescia trovò in questo punto ad aspettarlo la morte. Su un giornale spagnolo dell’epoca (emeroteca del El Mundo Deportivo) si dice che morì a causa di un problema alla ruota derivato da una foratura in gara. Era nato nel 1898, a Novi Ligure – Genova.; dal sito si legge la seguente biografia:
“Genua, Italy, born, Guido Mentasti, who had won the 1923 Raid Nord-Sud Milano-Napoli riding a Frera 500, became the first factory rider of Moto Guzzi, the company which was founded in 1921 by Carlo Guzzi, Giovanni Ravelli and Giorgio Parodi at Mandello Lario.
At his debut, Mentasti won the 1923 Giro Motociclistico d’Italia riding a Moto Guzzi Normale C2V. It was a five-stage 2,500-kilometer tough race that started from Milan, Italy. Only seven over 53 starters reached the finish-Line, Guido Mentasti won averaging 49.268 km/h, from Aristide Fergnani on an Indian, and Emilio Cavalieri on a Jap-Garanzini. Competing in Italy and Europe being his team mates Primo Moretti and Ugo Prini, the following year Mentasti won the first edition of the European Motorcycle Championship, held at Monza on 07 September 1924 in a single race. He won the 500 cm3 class, riding a Moto Guzzi 500 C4V. The British Jimmy Simpson won the 350 cm3 class on an AJS, and the Belgian Maurice van Geert on a Rush – Blackburne the 250 cm3 class.
Guido Mentasti lost his life at the age of 28, in a road accident that happened on Monday, 06 April 1925, while getting back from the Circuito Motoristico di Brescia on his Moto Guzzi machine. The race which was held on public roads close to that Italian town the previous day, was won by Pietro Ghersi’s Sunbeam. Guido Mentasti set the fastest lap of the race, while battling for the lead, when his motorcycle had a punctured front tyre. This forced him to drive almost 10 kms with the flat tyre before reaching the boxes at Brescia. It is believed that this caused his fatal accident the next day. While travelling towards Milan, the front tyre of his bike blew again and he was thrown into air, landing several meters ahed. Guido Mentasti suffered massive head injuries from which he died almost instantly.”