Archive for the ‘female riders’ Category

Brittany Morrow’s new Rock The Gear Video

September 16, 2009

Many of you may be familiar with Brittany Morrow and her harrowing tale of surviving a fall at speed off the back of a GSX R750. Surviving being a relative term given the two months she spent in the hospital and the skin grafts she received on more than 50 percent of her body. But she did survive — in a big way. 

Since that incident, Morrow has appeared in the pages of our 2007 Gear supplement and has emerged as a spokeswoman for the phrase ATGATT (all the gear, all the time). If you’ve ever had a customer dismiss the need to wear protective gear, get a hold of one of the posters we featured in that issue of Gear and explain the consequences of going without. I’m probably not the only one to repeat this cliche, but it’s one I tell people when they ask me why I’m all armored up on a hot day — I’d rather sweat than bleed. I didn’t need to see the pictures of Brittany post-surgery, but when I did they confirmed my strong stance on this subject.

Well, Morrow is the driving force behind Rock the Gear, an organization dedicated to educating every rider about making smart choices when deciding what to wear. Her latest contribution is a video featuring sportbike freestyle professionals tearing it up on their bikes and talking about the importance of wearing protective gear. It’s worth a watch and the Rock the Gear website is worth a look.

XDL US Stuntriding Championship Series – Rock the Gear . org from Brittany Morrow on Vimeo.

KTM Enters Its First ATV in Dakar Rally

December 22, 2008

On Jan. 3, Italian Camelia Liparoti will become the first person to ride a KTM quad in the Dakar Rallyktm_dakarquad2 when she crosses the starting line in Buenos Aires, Argentina, aboard her 525 XC.

About 235 motorcycles and 30 quads are scheduled to race in the inaugural “Dakar Rally” in South America. But, while KTM will field 55 percent of the motorcycles taking part in the rally this year, the Austrian company will field only one quad – Liparoti’s.

Other brands signed to compete in the ATV division include Yamaha, Suzuki, Polaris and BRP’s Can-Am.

Stage One of the rally begins in Buenos Aires on Saturday Jan. 3. Teams and riders from 49 countries will ktm_dakarquad1then be going full throttle 5,903 miles over the legendary Argentina Pampas, into Patagonia, across the Andes mountains, and across hundreds of miles of desert and sand dunes until the completion of Stage 14 back in the Argentinean capital on Jan. 17.

Check out for more about the 2009 Dakar Rally.

H-D Awards National Film Contest Winner

December 16, 2008

Harley-Davidson hosted a party last Thursday, Dec. 11, for the winner of Bikes, Camera, Action!, a contest the OEM says was designed to challenge female filmmakers from around the country to inspire other women to get behind the handlebars of their very own motorcycles. More than 65 party guests, including the contest winner, her film crew, members of the media, local Harley enthusiasts and film school professors, were among the first to view the winning film.

Dozens of female filmmakers answered the call to participate in Bikes, Camera, Action! and create original two-minute short films that capture the freedom and control that riding offers women.

Victoria Sampson of Shadow Hills, Calif. was selected as the Grand Prize Winner and honored at the premiere party for her film, Her Need for Speed. H-D says Sampson’s film stood out for the quality and creativity of the content. Aside from unveiling her film at the premiere party, Sampson received $5,000, a new High Definition video camera, a Harley-Davidson leather jacket, and a gift certificate for a 5-day bike rental through Harley-Davidson’s Authorized Rentals.

Melissa Kosar of Orange, Calif. and Marta Masferrer of New York City were selected as First Prize Winners, receiving $1,500 to use toward their next project, a Harley-Davidson leather jacket and the opportunity to learn to ride through Rider’s Edge, Harley-Davidson’s rider training program. Kosar’s film, entitled Girls Night Out and Masferrer’s film, Here Comes the Bride can be viewed, along with the Grand Prize winning film here.

Credit Crisis and the Industry

December 9, 2008

Talked to a North Carolina dealer today who says that compared to last year, the percentage of bikes being financed at his store has gone from seventy-somcredit_ben3ething to twenty-something. This echoes what dealers told me during a month-long investigation. Check out the resultant story to see how dealers are coping with tighter standards and fewer lenders. Used-bike financing is especially scarce, and dealers report stockpiles (meaning values will probably drop). Many dealers are shifting away from revolving credit and toward installment loans. A shift toward more sensible loans may be one of the few benefits of the current situation.

I also wrote a story on the joys and sorrows of working with credit unions. Industry consultants give suggestions on how to approach the unions.

More women. Newer bikes.

December 8, 2008

More Americans are riding for transportation, not just recreation, and that a greater percentage of women are taking to two-wheeling, preliminary data from the ongoing 2008 Motorcycle Industry Council Owner Survey suggests.

The “census of motorcycling,” last conducted in 2003, is only three-quarters complete and will not be finalized until March. But the survey already is providing indications of trends among customers, their reasons for riding, what they are riding, plus a look at the new demographics of American motorcyclists.

Here are a few more interesting tidbits:

Through the first three quarters of 2008, the survey found that women make up 12.4 percent of riders, up from 9.6 percent in 2003.

Preliminary findings also show that the average age of owners appears to be leveling off. In 1990, it was 32. In 1998, it was 38. In 2003, it was 41. The preliminary number for 2008 is only one year older, at 42.

There’s also an increased consumer preference for newer motorcycles, with the average age of the motorcycle down from a peak of 13.2 years in 1998, to 11.7 years in 2003, and to 10.8 years so far in 2008.

It should be pretty interesting when all the data are released in March. For any dealers reading this, perhaps it might be good to tweak your marketing approach based on these final results. Just an idea.

Motorcycling in Life

November 25, 2008

You gotta love sites like the new Life magazine photo archive. Yet one more way to wile away the time.

Here are a couple pics that caught my eye.

That's the LAPD motor cop force tearing it up at the Coliseum.

That's LAPD's motor cop force tearing it up at the Coliseum.

Has motorcycle fashion changed much?

Has motorcycle fashion changed much?

This is apparently at a protest over a state law that banned motorcycles from the freeways. Like that could happen today... Or could it?

This is apparently at a protest over a state law that banned motorcycles from the freeways. Like that could happen today... Or could it?