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June 29, 2013

Women on 2 Wheels

Number of women motorcycle riders on the rise

(Continued)

NEW ALBANY —

“I think the motorcycling industry is finally starting to realize that if they build bikes that more women can ride comfortable and come up with marketing strategies to help them do that, then that’s better revenue for everyone and it fills a niche,” Sharon said.

Responding to the trend, Sharon’s shop includes motorcycle gear specific to women. Fashion of the season tends to dictate the popular colors, with purple and aqua being the current trends. Pink never seems to go out of style. Personalization of both bikes and their clothing remains important.

“I want people to know that I am a girl riding a motorcycle. I definitely want to have some sort of look about me or the bike that people recognize right away that I’m a female,” Sharon said. “So women, just like me, want to make their bikes their own whether that means they want them to sound a certain way or look a certain way.”

A motorcyclist herself, Sharon bought her first bike, an entry level Buell, shortly after she started working at Fink’s. Partly the reason for the purchase was to gain some credibility with the regular clientele, but she’s always loved the feel of riding.

“My earliest memories of motorcycling are my dad sitting me up on the tank and I’d hold on to the handlebars and he would take me around the block,” Sharon said. “When I finally got old enough for my feet to touch the passenger pegs, I could ride on the back. I mean, I was a big girl then.”

Later college and a move to work in another male dominated profession, financial services, would take Sharon away from Southern Indiana. Only seven years ago when her uncle considered retirement did she decide to make the journey home and take over the family business.

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