Tag Archives: motorcycles

The Rightsizing of the Motorcycle Industry

Rightsizing of the Motorcycle Industry

As I drove around last Saturday to hand out flyers and solicit door prizes for the upcoming Rails and Roads Vintage Motorcycle Show (September 16th 2017 in Winnsboro SC) I stopped at a few dealerships and a few independent shops. In all places the welcomes were warm, but I noticed something very strange. In most cases there was almost no one in the stores besides the employees. When I worked at my local Honda dealership, every Saturday was a madhouse; an empty store on a Saturday was unheard of. It must have been inevitable that after decades of main stream success that it may be time for a rightsizing of the motorcycle industry.

Rails and Roads Motorcycle Show
Rails and Roads Motorcycle Show

Of course the recent news that Harley Davidson was going to layoff some production workers was something no one could have imagined 10-15 years ago. Before that Polaris announced the shuttering of their Victory motorcycle brand. The one bright spot in the market for Polaris is the success of the Indian brand that merged the solid technology of the Polaris company with an old legendary American brand name.

It’s not just cruisers, sport bike sales are off too. All across the market things are not as exciting as they used to be. The big 4 Japanese manufacturers are fortunate enough to have the ATV & side X side UTV market to keep them going, but even that segment has been affected by the tightening of the consumers spending habits. And this seems to be a global slide as the Nikkei Asian Review recently published an article entitled “The Motorcycle Becoming Thing of the Past.” According to this article, motorcycle sales in Japan are only 11% of what they once were. It’s sad to think that motorcycling is going away in the country that proved to the world that it was possible to build reliable, oil tight, powerful & lightweight motorcycles.

The bright spot in the world market for motorcycles is the increasing demand in India where according to the Times of India demand for 500cc and up motorcycles has increased at a 23% calculated annual growth rate from 2014 to 2017. This has led to a number of large players building factories there to pry some of this lucrative business away from Bajaj & Enfield.

Another happy trend is the vintage motorcycle industry. Although it is in very real danger of falling victim to the same over-exposure & over-saturation as the “American Chopper” crowd from a few years ago, right now the demand for genuine vintage motorcycles whether restored or customized in either the “café racer or “Bratstyle,”is extremely high.  Now when you buy that old Japanese 4 or even small displacement twin you have to pay real money for it, if you don’t someone else will. A lot of motorcycle manufacturers have noticed this trend and now offer ready to ride retro style machines to allow you to experience the joy of vintage motorcycling without the misery of actually restoring a vintage motorcycle.

But the motorcycle companies are not the only ones that suffer from a soft demand for motorcycles, the Touratech company makers of some of the finest accessories for the adventure touring market filed for bankruptcy protection this year. This is yet another symptom of the rightsizing of the motorcycle industry. According to the Touratech U.S.A. blog operations will continue as normal during the company’s reorganization.

Motorcycle magazines are another thing hit hard by the rightsizing of the motorcycle industry. The audience is fickle even when times are booming it’s tough for publishers. Two of my all-time favorite motorcycle magazines came & went during the nineties at the height of the motorcycling boom in the U.S. The Old Bike Journal was one and the other was Twistgrip. Both of them came and went pretty quickly, The Old Bike Journal lasted longer because it had a broader audience, but both of these publications came and went during relatively good times.

Recently on Facebook, Buzz Kanter the publisher of American Iron Magazine shared his thoughts on the state of the industry giving some examples of how tough it is to survive and thrive in today’s market. I am going to share his exact words with you in the succeeding paragraphs. (Yes he generously granted permission for all to share them.)

“Call it Industrial Darwinism if you wish. But the business world is really all about the survival of the fittest. I have questioned for a few years how the motorcycle industry could support so many manufacturers, distributors and magazines. I now believe we are about to have a serious shift and downsizing.
I predict a growing number of changes in the motorcycle industry in the next year or so.
Too many motorcycle-industry businesses are over finanically over leveraged and will not be able to carry the debt. Others seem to be poorly managed. But others look healthy, creative and sustainable.
I expect more consolidation of big name motorcycle industry brands, some companies going out of buisness, and a very significant reduction of motorcycle magazines.
Paisano (Easyriders Magazine, V-Twin Magazine, Wrench Magazine, Road Iron Magazine) has announced they are folding all their motorcycle magazines except Easyriders, which they are reducing from 12 to 9 or 10 issues a year.
Bonnier (Cycle World Magazine, Motorcyclist Magazine, Hot Bike Magazine, Baggers Magazine, Sport Rider Magazine, etc) has been cutting back on their magazines’s sizes and frequencies. They just announced they are folding Sport Rider, and I expect more radical cuts in staff and product there.
So what does this all mean? I believe the motorcycle industry is ripe for a “rightsizing” where there will be a rebalancing of supply and demand. As demand for motorcycles, motorcycle parts and motorcycle services continue to decline, so does the financial support of those who serve these markets.
We at the growing family of American Iron media (American Iron Magazine, American Iron Garage, American Iron Salute, and American Iron Power magazines, plus our growing on-line operations) are working hard to understand and react to these changes with strategic and creative ways. We’d like to thank everyone involved with the amazing world of motorcycles for your support as we move ahead into the future.
If you have read this far, I’d appreciate your reaction and suggestions, also please feel free to share this post.”

This is sobering stuff from an acknowledged industry leader. The cuts at Bonnier especially bug me because Cycle World is the only one I subscribe to and is the current home of my favorite motorcycle writer of all times Kevin Cameron, but time and the economy march on relentlessly so we must all adapt or die.

Now this all sounds like a lot of gloom and doom, but there could be a lot of positives to the rightsizing of the motorcycle industry. As motorcycling has grown and become more mainstream the many of the long time hardcore motorcycle enthusiasts (especially American motorcycle loyalists) have resented being taken for granted and seemingly being pushed aside as the dealers and motorcycle companies ran chasing after the hordes of trend followers who saw motorcycles as cool fashion accessories to be discarded when the next big thing comes along.

Another advantage is that the companies that survive the rightsizing will be more competitive and have a sounder financial footing for the future. I just hope the ones that do can produce products that I like and still stay in business.

Part of the problem with the motorcycle industry is enthusiasts like me, people with eclectic tastes in motorcycles that no one else but me really wants. The problem with modern motorcycling for me is there are so few motorcycles available that I would have. The short list in order by desirability is;

  1. Triumph Bonneville Street Twin (Yes the 900cc version I’d never miss the other 300cc.)
  2. Moto Guzzi V9 Roamer or Bobber (I prefer the Roamer with its chrome and 19” front wheel)
  3. Honda CB1100 (This bike can do no wrong and would actually be my first choice for a cross country ride, it just blends into the background too easily.)
  4. Honda Africa Twin (Only adventure bike I’d want)
  5. Royal Enfield Bullet (Love the style, riding position etc. but I’d have to keep a Honda in the garage next to it, you know just in case.)

    a real 2012 Royal Enfield Bullet
    a real 2012 Royal Enfield Bullet

Look at this list other than the Triumph does anybody else want one? I must not want one too badly either, the newest bike I own is a scooter an 01 Honda Helix, the next newest one is a 1980 CB650, & the others are from 1964, 1971 & 1972. Too many people bitch on the internet about what they want but when someone builds it they don’t go buy it. I plead guilty as charged to that. Prices are too damn high, income is down, and my 37 year old ratbike is just as roadworthy & reliable as anything I can buy.

This friends leads to the real reason for the “rightsizing of the motorcycle industry”, the customers just aren’t buying. There are a million reasons why not. In my case personally it’s the value of what you get versus what you pay. I can sign the line and get any motorcycle I want, but quite frankly to me they’re not worth the cost. Others just simply don’t see anything new that they want even though they don’t mind spending the money. Plus many vintage bikes especially the Japanese ones are damn near as reliable as anything made today for a fraction of the cost once they get fettled properly. Combine this with a general decline in interest in the experience of driving by younger people it’s easy to see why the industry as a whole is downsizing. The customers just aren’t buying.

The Selvedge Yard! Website of the Month Feb. ’15

Yes I know dear reader, I skipped the WOTM feature in January, it flew by in a hectic rush of past due deadlines and impossible promises. For the first one of the new year, I am going to grab some low hanging fruit. This is absolutely one of the most entertaining websites on the planet; The Selvedge Yard. Many a pleasant hour have I passed perusing it’s vast archive of pop history with regards to music, racing,celebrities, art, & motorcycles.


<the selvedge yard>


Don’t take my word for it, go check out The Selvedge Yard, I promise you will have a good time!

Cool Bikes, Wicked Cars, Cool Dudes, & Hot Ladies – Rockabillaque

Considering this was the 2nd annual Rockabillaque event, color me very impressed.

<a wicked 55 chevy>

Nothing else like a black 55 Chevy, especially with this under the hood.

<injected 55 chevy>

Walking from our parking space to the event area, I just couldn’t resist snapping a picture of the artwork on this building.

<art building1 north charleston>

<art building2 north charleston sc>


<art building 3 park circle>

The bike show portion was kind of small but there was really some quality iron on display. Since they had a rat class I decided to take the Assault Scrambler and even managed to talk this very lovely & gracious young lady into letting me take her picture next to it.


<woman with cb650>

Good old fashioned Ironhead chopper.

<classic ironhead chopper>

some rats lined up

<rats at rockabillaque>

A lot of fine detail on this rigid Evo.

<fantastic rigid sporty>

I love the placement of his lithium battery, the fender struts and of course the red wheels with wide whitewalls. Classy!

A shout out to Low Country Harley for sponsoring the show and thanks for the gift certificate I won.

<elvis lives>

No respectable motorcycle show would be complete without at least one Triumph.

<1970 Triumph Bonneville>

some pretty shiny motorcycles lined up

<rockabillaque bike show line up>

This Bratstyle KZ440 actually won the rat class. Cool little bike.

<kawasaki kz440 brat>

Great music was available from different bands on different stages throughout the day.

<hillbilly music>

<rockabilly music>


Had lunch at the Barbeque Joint, one of the events sponsors, great food.

<the barbecue joint north charleston sc>

The Mrs. & I took nearly a hundred pictures around the event and in this next section let’s look at some highlights from the car show.

Let’s start with a pair of evil looking Volkswagens!

<badass v8 rat volkswagen>


<a broadsword for a shifter>

Things were always cool, and this one looks like it’s literally been driven to hell and back, making it that much cooler!

<rat survivor thing>

Rat Hole Garage brought a cool old truck,

<rat hole garage truck>

and even cooler a matching bicycle!

<rat hole garage bicycle>

Ford Falcons were always a favorite of mine, ( I’ve owned a couple)  and this sharp convertible is da bomb.

<ford falcon convertible>

Details, details, details…

<three dueces>


<saw blade sun shade>

In addition to the usual assortment of fine hot rods,  muscle cars, and rats there were also a couple of sweet British sports cars one being this nice white Jaguar,

<vintage Jaguar>

and the other was this very sharp looking Lotus 7 replica.

<Lotus Seven replica>

As much as I love the whole “ratrod” scene it was great to see a traditional, painted with flames, polished & shiny hot rod like this ’32 Tudor.

<Trad Hot Rod>

How about a full on Pro Modified race car? Better still it’s a Henry J, with a blower and “Hillborn style” fuel injection.

<pro mod Henry J racer>

The outside of this particular Dodge van was nothing special but when you swung open the side doors the interior was pure disco era rolling sin bin.

<tiki man van 70s sin bin>


And last but definitely not least the world infamous Trash Nova shown here cruising the not so mean streets of North Charleston. Hey it was given the peoples choice trophy for best of show!

<The Trash Nova>

The show had several great sponsors, here I am posing with the display for Guilty Pleasures. Hey you gotta love their business motto!

<guilty pleasures>

Some how the gentlemen at the Holy City Beard & Mustache Society talked me into entering the partial beard division of the beard & ‘stache event. It was great fun and after a bit of hairy competition I shaved out a 4th place finished and the fellows with the really gnarly beards took the top 3.

<partial beard contest winners>

There were all kinds of things going on including, a puppet show, 50’s era fashion show, & a tattoo contest. Some of these were happening simultaneously so I was unable to get pictures from everything, but trust me this weekend if liked great music, wild tattoos,cool bikes, wicked cars, cool dudes, & hot ladies, Park Circle in North Charleston, South Carolina was the place to be.

<models from the rockabillaque fashion show>
Some of the beautiful models from the fashion show.

Now I have saved the best part for last despite only taking my pocket camera and standing at the back of the crowd I was able to get at least one decent picture each of the Miss Rockabiilaque Pinup contestants. I was a bad reporter and I didn’t get their names or anything, I forgot to take a notebook and the crowd was fairly noisy cheering them on so I didn’t hear all the names anyway. For a larger view click on the pictures below.

My advice to you is to look for this event next year and try to attend, we had a great time & I am sure you will too!

Peace Y’all!




















Here’s a cool event to check out this coming Saturday November 15th 2014! Rockabillaque in North Charleston, S.C.

<Rockabillaque 2014>

So if you enjoy vintage custom cars, old motorcycles, rockabilly music, pinup girls, & Kustom Kulture in general you really don’t want to miss this show!

In addition to the main website you can check out their Facebook Page too!

The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride! September 2014 Website of the Month!

<distinguished gentleman's ride>

Did you know that about 500,000 men die annually of prostate cancer? Or that globally more men are affected by prostate cancer, than women by breast cancer? I didn’t either. Now we’ve all seen the pink ribbons that say save the ta-tas, in fact you can hardly swing a dead cat anywhere without hitting a “Warrior in Pink” attempting to raise awareness of and/or funding for breast cancer treatment research. Now this is a very good thing because I really love ladies, some more than others, but still love them all & wish nothing but the best of health for them and their boobies.

<we all love boobies>
Don’t forget we need to save the guys too.
Gentleman’s Ride.com

Let’s face it, people love titties, men love them, babies love them, and women love them too. So while you are writing out the check for breast cancer research take a moment to see if you could spare some change for a less attractive body part. Sure the prostate is not up in your face drawing attention to itself the way a nice pair of knockers will, but prostate cancer is still a deadly killer. My own father has & is still dealing with this evil scourge & its lingering effects, we are still waiting for the resolution of his treatment and hopefully he will be in complete remission soon.

Please take a moment and check out the website for The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride, and sign up for an event, or just make a donation to the cause. I would love to see a 100% cure developed for this in my lifetime.

Get yourself looking good for the ride!
Get yourself looking good for the ride!

Mark your calendar for September 28th 2014, there will be 235 rides in 56 countries, so no matter where you are there is bound to be one near you. Check out the Gentleman’s Ride website for the location nearest you.

The organizers did ask me to remind everyone that this was an event for Classics, café racers, bobbers, trackers, customs, modern classics, classic scooters & undefinable 2/3 wheeled machines. So break out the good vintage stuff, and leave your plastic fantastic, crotch rockets, and your big inch, late model, fuel injected cruisers at home please.

<distinguished gentlmans ride check 4 cancer>

P.S. If you are past a certain age, don’t forget next time you get a checkup, to be sure you get a PSA (prostate antibodies) blood test, and if necessary an actual physical exam. Trust me it’s a lot less painful than dying from the cancer.
Peace Y’all





The Old Biker Speaks. A Parable for the Modern Motorcycle Lover

Warning; When I wasn’t looking someone slipped a couple of naughty words into this one. No f-bombs, gratuitous sex, or boob pictures though, sorry.


Imagine that you are gathered with a group of your fellow motorcyclists, be you a group of yuppie cruisers, hipsters on retro style bobbers &café racers, hardcore chopperheads, or restoration junkies. Everyone is standing around, taking a breather, checking out each other’s bikes, telling interesting half-truths & just generally having a great time in the way that only a bunch of bikers can. The sun is bright; the beer is cold, and the ladies beautiful. It is truly a perfect day as long as no asshole decides to ruin it for you.

Somehow there is just one brief moment of silence and I heard it, far away in the distance the howl of an ancient four banger breathing out through a quartet of totally baffle free drag pipes. The exhaust note is raspy & uneven, and you catch the whirring sound of a loose cam chain, all obvious signs of deferred maintenance that would kill a lesser engine, but as we all know, some of these old SOHC 750’s will never die no matter how ratty they get.

By now the whole encampment has heard the sound and is looking up the winding road coming down the mountain to see what matter of machine is headed towards them. Some are commenting about how rough it sounds, others somehow seem to be watching in fear as if it may be some kind of hipster/yuppie/brand loyal purist eating dragon coming to consume them.

<old school Hipster eating Chopper>

It finally flashes into sight coming around the curve, a creature from another time, impossibly long, the rear wheel bouncing up & down in an ancient Amen Savior plunger frame. The front tire too bounces up, down, left and right as the rusty peeling girder front end rattles and shakes with each imperfection in the road surface. The bushings in the girder are shot & so are the steering head bearings. There is no way this thing should be moving so fast, especially on this twisty road, but it is.

As it approaches our group the rider lets off the throttle and downshifts, causing the engine to backfire on the overrun, blam! blam! blam! as flames pop out the ends of the exhaust pipes, that appear to have been fabricated from metal conduit 40 years ago. Small animals & nervous people immediately begin plotting escape routes, after all sensible people are afraid of folks who ride deathtraps like this.

The paint job was obviously gorgeous a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far, away but has now suffered several decades of weather beating and a million miles of hard riding. Every top surface was chalky, and crazed with cracks, looking as though hundreds of overlapping cobwebs had been deposited on the tops of the frame, tank, & rear fender.

On the sides you could still see the remains of a gold base coat topped with green & red kandy paints, sprayed through chicken wire to simulate scales. Back in the day a pretty good 70’s air brush artist had written the letters FYYFF on the sides of the tank in black and purple colors, tee shirt lettering style. Modern day neo rat riders immediately snapped pictures in hope of finding a way to re-create this patina on their next project. The engine side covers had been chromed at some point but had become sand blasted & peeling, as were the rims. Most of the spokes, bolt heads, & all four exhaust pipes where coated with rust. A fantastically ornate king and queen seat that is a work of art in its own right, despite being threadbare & worn reclined against a 3 foot high trident shaped sissy bar with 3 rusty spear points aimed at the sky.

Rattling to a complete stop and switching off the engine and the fuel tap, the grizzled old rider swung out the side stand and leaned the bike over to park it. Looking on as open mouthed & slack jawed as the rest of the crowd I couldn’t help but notice a tiny golden trickle of gasoline dribble down to the edge of the oxidized velocity stack on the number one carburetor forming just enough of a droplet to catch the sun’s rays like a tiny jewel in a rusty can, but not a big enough dribble to actually leak out onto the ground.

The rider himself, was a fascinating creature, he rode helmetless without gloves, with just a leather club vest covering his torso. Of course this caused a great murmur of disapproval amongst the safety nazis in the group. Although when astride his magnificent steed he seemed much larger than life, standing on the ground before me he was just man of just below average size. Bald on top with 2 foot of long grey hair on the sides, he sported the pointiest goatee I had ever seen and a finely waxed handlebar mustache. His bald spot was covered with a tattoo of a spider web, & a POW-MIA flag graced his right shoulder.  Despite his diminutive physical stature, he gives out the overwhelming sense of confidence that only a man on a mission that knows he’s doing the right thing can posses.

Next our mysterious stranger unstraps a wooden box from the sissy bar of his motorcycle, throws it on the ground in front of us, steps up on it, and in the most corn fed southern accent you ever heard in your life says, “Hey y’all we need to talk about some of the crazy shit going down in the motorcycle business sometimes.”

I’m sure that most of you younger folk have heard of this newfangled thing called the internet and that giant worldwide marketplace called ebay. It seems that a man can find almost anything he might need to survive, motorcycle parts, vinyl records, silver, gold, knives, heavy metal posters etc. In fact about the only necessities you can’t get there are guns and ammunition because the owners are a bunch of politically correct pussies that don’t see the necessity of such things like we do, but I digress let me get back on track here. Lately I’ve noticed an alarming tendency of people to put things up for sale at what is called a “no reserve auction.” But when the item sells for less than they expected they just don’t ship it, or if the item doesn’t get up to a certain price by the last day they cancel it. I’ve actually had both of these things happen to me lately and it left a very bad taste in my mouth. I was actually planning to bid on one original vintage European motorcycle but passed it by for a different motorcycle only to have the shop that was selling it cancel the auction in the last 5 hours. If I’d known the sum-bitches was lying about the no reserve auction I would be the proud owner of a 75 Jawa right now. Instead I got a pocket full of pissed off & another shop on my list of places not to buy anything from.

Now all of you know more about the workings of the internet than I do, but apparently not everyone understands how an auction works. First off if you have a certain dollar amount that you have to have for something, you should never ever use a low starting bid, no reserve auction to sell it, never. Either you pay the fee for a reserve auction or set your starting bid at your bottom dollar price & let it go up from there. If you do screw up, use a no reserve auction and sell something for far less than you thought, man up, take the beating, & learn from your mistake. I’ve done it a time or two before I learn’t better. Also all dealers selling bikes should disclose all fees & taxes up front in the auction listing. The same goes for dealers craigslist ads too.

Now let’s speak about selling motorcycles without titles. Decent honest people know that in most places you can’t register a bike without a title. Now if you live in a place where you can register an old bike without a title I am genuinely happy for you, but in all honesty the only way you can get any money for it will be to sell it locally. Even if I lived in one of these states, for any bike that was less than 25 years old and/or worth more than 3 or 4 thousand bucks you should still insist on enough paperwork to ensure that the current owner is the legal owner.

In the rest of the states stop trying to get full price for them, without the proper legal paperwork they are either just a pile of parts, or if dilapidated or unwanted enough just plain old scrap metal, and should be priced accordingly. People constantly say, “You can get a title.” Well that is an expensive maybe at best. In my home state of South Carolina there is a process you can go through for vehicles over 25 years old. You fill out forms, send in pictures & money including sales tax for the purchase price, then you take it to the DMV office where they inspect it to be sure the serial number matches what is on your paperwork. They then run it through the database and if there is no current title for it in existence & it has not been reported stolen, they will issue you a title. If the vehicle is not running at the time you will be given an off road use only title no matter what kind of bike it is. So once you get it restored you have to trailer it back to the DMV for a second inspection, and pay a second title fee to get the off road brand removed. When you count the time off from work this can run several hundred dollars. So to me, even a good running fair looking bike without a title is only worth ¼ to ½ as much as the same bike with a title. It’s gotta be cheap enough that I can take the chance. A rusty, locked up, old rice grinder that has no visible good parts on it or is of no collectible value should be weighed and sold by the pound at your local scrap yard. A number of you don’t even have the options that I have here in S.C. As for the title service companies there are many reputable ones out there, but even so you are still looking at hundreds of dollars in some cases to get paperwork. The last quote I got from one was ten or twelve years ago and it was nearly $300 then, and I am sure the price has not gone down any. Some states may have laws against using out of state title services so be careful and find out if yours is one of them.

The most dangerous thing I have ever seen in an ad is a seller whom actually said that he would not provide a bill of sale for a motorcycle he had with no title. His price was actually reasonable enough, that I might have bought it to part out, but there is no way I am ever going to bring home any motorcycle frame of any kind without either a title or a bill of sale to prove that it was purchased legally. The same goes for a Harley engine because some states will issue a title on the engine. If you won’t give me any paperwork to prove I bought it, well FYYFF I’m not going to buy it. Big Bubba down at the grey bar hotel ain’t near as fun to snuggle with as my old lady. Remember kiddos if you can’t at least get a bill of sale or receipt to show the man if he asks for it, walk away.

And finally, I guess we (myself included) should quit picking on the hipsters so much. Yes I know with their funky brakeless one speed bicycles & queer eye for the straight lumberjack style of clothing, they do make easy targets. But come on; give them some credit for their role in the current café racer, old school skinny tire chopper & bobber revival. They have dusted off a bunch of cool stuff from the past & are helping to insure its future. Plus without them, Pabst Blue Ribbon beer might have disappeared for good.

<bikers and hipsters too>

Then the old timer stepped down off of his soap box and the crowd cheered, although I don’t know if it’s because they enjoyed the lesson or just because the old man finally shut up. After he strapped the box back to his sissy bar, a rosy cheeked young man, with a long beard, in a flannel shirt handed him a cold PBR that he sipped on while chatting with the curious bikers who wanted to take a look at his ancient steed. When he had polished off the brew he crushed the can between his hand and his forehead and tossed it in the general direction of the nearest trash can, straddled his old chopper, twisted the grip three times and with a mighty heave on the kick starter fired it up. Once again the crowd turned to see and just as he rolled out of the exit, they all raised a cold one in a salute as the prophet sped away to the next gathering to preach his message of honesty, fair dealing, staying out of jail & caring for your fellow man.


Happy Trails Y’all


Why We Ride Film Motopsyco’s October Website of the Month!

<Whyweridefilm.com ValleyOfFire>
It’s worth going to the website just for the great pictures like this.


Let me be up front with you, when International Motorcycle Shows first posted the trailer for this movie on Facebook I almost didn’t click on it. So often these “documentaries” about motorcycling are so one dimensional that they seem to be written for a narrow group of riders and/or racers. While I have yet to see the movie itself I have watched the trailer about 10 times already! There are interviews with kids, moms, street riders, Harley aficionados, crotch rocket jockeys, & racers from a variety of two wheeled motorsports all talking about how much they love to ride motorcycles & trying to explain the feeling to the rest of the world. Those of us who already ride understand the passion that just overflows out with the words they speak. Hopefully some of the normal people that get dragged to this film by friends and family will feel it too, and if they don’t at least want to try it will at least get an understanding of what draws us to these machines that so many people mistakenly see as deathtraps.

<whyweridefilm.com Sturgis>
another fantastic pic from whyweridefilm.com

I ride a motorcycle & I love it. When I was a skinny little nerdy kid it was my favorite escape. No matter how bad my days at school were, when I slid that two stroke Kawasaki around a curve in the woods behind the cow pasture & then jumped one of the hills at the side of the canal ditch I was the ultimate 6th grade badass and all was right with the world! Today most of my riding is commuting back & forth to work on my ancient Honda, but it is still my escape and when everything is just right, I still roll on the throttle exiting that last turn before a long straight and pin it to the stop, while the ghost of Hunter S. Thompson whispers in my ear, “screw it on you big pussy” as the speedometer hurtles toward that magic number that all the Ton Up Boys lived & died for. It has been approximately 37 years since I got my first motorcycle and even though age and injuries have made me more cautious it still thrills me. Just like the first time! Every time. Even when just putting around at slow cruising speeds like the old fart that I am becoming. Bottom line is, I’ll quit riding when I die.

<whyweridefilm.com SunsetRide>

Even if you don’t visit the website at least click on this line and go watch the trailer!   Then come back here & tell me & the rest of the world why YOU ride in the comments section. I am going to close this out by quoting from the synopsis on the movie website.

“Your senses will heighten as the world rushes in, your heart will beat to the pulse of the engine, your mind will race and set you free. Once you let a motorcycle into your life, it will change you forever.”

Sums it up for me,

Peace Y’all