Vespa's success in Portugal is undoubtedly due to the clubs and strong associations, particularly in the 1950s and 60s, and in a second phase from 1986 to the present day. It all starts in the post war period with a group of Vespa lovers who in the years 1952-53 began to roll through the District of Lisbon and Setubal. They were unhappy with Vespa's first official importer - Agostinho Rios de Oliveira. They were young people who wanted to form a Vespa Club, similar to what was happening in Europe.
Alberto Graça Júnior, one of the first to join the group, decides to talk to his friend José Machado, strongman of the Commercial Company Guérin (importer of Volkswagen), and convinces him to import Vespa to Portugal; On the other hand, he and his Vespista friends would form a club to boost the brand, supported by Guérin. It was so. In 1954 Guérin gained the representation of the brand and on August 15, that same year, the Vespa Club of Lisbon - Portugal (VCP) is officially registered by the 23 members.
On March 21, 1955 the 1st General Assembly was held and was appointed Chairman of the Board Francisco Oliveira Marques, who in that same year represented Portugal at the Congress of the European Vespa Clubs. He then meets Dr. Renato Tassinari, its president, and realizes the need to create VCP as a Club Federation.
In 1955, several clubs were formed in Portugal, the Vespa Club of Coimbra, Vila Franca, Setúbal and Portimão, next to Porto and Faro. In April 1956, the Vespa Clube de Coimbra, led by Eng. Carlos Mancelos held the first international meeting in Portugal, where French, German and Spanish vespistis would come.
In turn, the Portuguese representation from 1952 was made by authentic ambassadors.
In the 1970s most wasp clubs are disappearing all over the world. Fortunately, The Vespa Club of Lisbon - Portugal, with its president Carlos Dionísio has always kept active, keeping all its archives and historical memories. In 1986, he encouraged a group of 13 friends to participate in the Eurovespa Barcelona, hosted by Jordi Balart. Again a horny fever broke out. Since then VC Lisbon, VC Faro, VC Porto and Vespistas Do Norte, VC Fátima and many other clubs have been present at various Eurovespa, Vespa World Days and other international meetings.
With the holding of the Lisbon Eurovespa in 2004 and Vespa World Days Fátima in 2010, the number of Vespa clubs has skyrocketed, as has the country's rampant search for wasps, as well as their restoration and collecting. With the officialization of the VCP, and the respective coordinating the annual calendar, keeping several clubs together and in solidarity, Portugal has become a worldwide example of the strength of this large family.
In 2022, the city of Guimarães, birthplace of the Nation, will host the largest Vespa meeting, leaving Portugal once again in history as the country that will start the new discretion now, European Vespa Days, another pride for national vespisti!Pedro Pinto