M Noel Mavrogordato
Page updated 06-Mar-2011
Mavro taking delivery of his MV
from Vincent Davey

Michel Noël (George) Mavrogordato (1903 – 1984) bought a 750cc MV Agusta from Gus Kuhn motors in 1973 - when he was just 70 years old. He had led a very eventful life, as well as pre-war Brooklands and Donington races, he competed in 11 amateur TTs and Manx GPs. His last race was the 1952 Ultra-lightweight TT when he finished 9th on an EMC-Puch.

Though he was told that he could win the Manx if he rode a Norton he replied “I daresay, but I'd rather lose on a Scott.”

‘Mavro' owned a diverse range of motorcycles, cars and light aircraft as well as sailing his own seagoing boats under power and sail. He had been a professional pilot and was a prolific and ingenious engineer, running a successful motorcycle business in Salisbury from 1946 to 1956. Every year the Salisbury Motorcycle Club have a run in his honour. http://www.mdaf.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/smc/events.htm

He came from a Greek merchant-banking family and went to Cambridge in 1925, where he developed his passion for speed and machines. He was employed by De Haviland and gained his aviation certificate on a DH60 Moth in 1930 at London Aero Club. In 1933 he joined the newly founded Midland and Scottish Air Ferries. The following year became a reserve officer in the RAF, where he rose to the rank of Squadron Leader during WWII. One of his routine jobs was flying newspapers to a small field on the Isle of Man, which eventually grew into Ronaldsway Airport. As the result of a flying accident at Witney he was unable to compete in the 1938 Manx GP, but his injuries introduced him to nurse Elizabeth Tuke, whom he married the following year. His first Manx outing was consequently delayed until 1946 when he competed on a blown 250 DKW, which then seized in the first lap.