I first saw Gaz Powell’s ‘Roses’ tribute Lambretta in the flesh at the NSRA Great Yarmouth custom show…
While rubbing away at tired chrome I noticed a very bright GP pass by. At first I thought it was a brave move to go with such a shade, but when I got the opportunity for a proper look I ‘got’ the scheme and it instantly grew on me. As a theme the band has some proper scooter rally links, members both attending and owning scooters in the 80s. In fact they have probably become some of the most successful ‘scooterboys’ from that period – that is not forgetting ‘Wheeler Dealer’ Mike Brewer though! I’ve had the pleasure of sharing a shandy or two over the years with Gaz, a real gent and full of some hilarious scootering tales. So after a quick dust-down to both the scooter and his cravat, here’s ‘I Wanna Be Adored’ revisited.
Name: Gary Powell
Scooter Club: I used to be a part of Hartlepool Scooter Club… but not anymore thankfully. So it’s the good old LCGB and the very exclusive Hartlepool Lambretta Club (I might be in the Stranton Eagles Vespa Club?!).
When did you start ‘rallying’ and why: I started rallying in 1988. Before that I was a Mod from an early age so always wanted a scooter. Lad over the road got a 50 special and I was mesmerized watching him come and go with mates, combined with the bikes and rally reports in the then (relatively) new Scootering magazine and that was it.
Scooter name: I Wanna Be Adored – Stone Roses, at the time I thought it summed up building a custom scooter…(yuk!).
Year originally built as a custom: 1994 (I think?).
Inspiration: Riding to rallies with Glyn Dove and seeing his ‘Pseudo Satisfaction’ and Steve Ware’s ‘Yesterdays Dreams’. So I wanted a custom and at the time I was bang into the Roses – they weren’t as popular then!
Paint (artist): John Spurgeon couldn’t give me a time scale for doing it, then I saw a few machines from the Essex area done by Simon Clarke. Adi Clark’s ‘Oscillate Wildly’ swung it – got in touch and a deal was done!
Engine: TS1 225 – was originally built with an Amal, Quill Racing exhaust, centre spring etc. Has now been rebuilt with strengthened springs, Taffy copy pipe, 35mm TMX.
Fabrication: Some bits by the late Pete Robinson.
Chrome/engraving: All by Pete Robinson at the time – a few bits have been rechromed by Quality Chrome and there are a few more bits to redo.
When you got the scooter (before customising) what condition was it in: It was running Italian GP with a TSI motor that I used on a good few rallies.
What do you think of today’s rallies compared to the 80s/90s: It’s different, but nothing stays the same and it would be shite if it did in reality – I loved the NSRA days where there was a sense of belonging and commitment to those eight or nine rallies a year that saw us cover the country. I still enjoy ‘national’ rallies today and still do plenty (that’s down largely to my bank of great mates from around the country).
Funny stories either about scooter or yourself at rallies (80s-90s): Too many to list here… it’s been a blast from day one and continuous.
Favourite ever event: This scooter picking up best mural and best of show at Brid on its first outing beating lots of John Spurgeon painted bikes. At the time it was unbelievable as it was done by a relative unknown if you lived outside of Essex.
Favourite custom scooter ever: Difficult one – I don’t think I have one.
Favourite dealer: Scooter Restorations/AP/ Chiselspeed.
Anything else you’d like to add: I’ve just rebuilt the engine and I’m currently having a few bits of chrome redone. All the chrome nuts and bolts have been replaced with stainless, as have a few other parts. It’s waiting on a new front disc brake, the back hub is oval so that’s going to be skimmed (or replaced), possible a new big tank and a couple of new murals… should be ready for next year to use on a few rallies unless another build gets in the way!
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