Harley Davidson’s European Bike Week Event

Austrians prepare to be deafened!

Now in it’s 13th year Harley Davidson is holding its European Bike Week Event,  7th to 12th September, with 100,000 bikers expected.   All the regular event fixtures will be there with plenty of live music, food, and some fantastic bikes on show.  Despite Harleys difficulties it great to see that this event didn’t fall under its cost cutting efforts and will be a great showcase for HD in Europe.  Harley Davidson press for the event says;

‘Once again, the Austrian region of Carinthia will come alive with the sound of V-Twins rumbling through its veins as European Bike Week enters its 13th consecutive year.

With 12 massively successful parties in its back catalogue, can this event get any better? Oh yes it can! The 2010 party promises to once again live up to its title as Europe’s biggest free biker festival. If you’re a regular visitor, you’ll know exactly what we’re talking about. If you haven’t been before, get the dates in your diary – September 7-12 – it will be an event to remember!

There is a full music line-up on the main stage from Tuesday to Saturday, free demo rides and an even bigger customizer area that will host the Custom Bike Show, which is once again affiliated to the AMD World Championships where one lucky winner will be given the chance to compete at Sturgis in 2011!

The Harley-Davidson Hospitality Bar moves to the main plaza alongside the Expo Area and the infamous dealer mile. Hot Dot Cafe and Choppers Bar return to keep the party alive into the early hours!’

RTWW can’t make it this year but it’s penciled in for 2011.  If you’re heading to the event and get some good photos send them to us at info@ridethewildwind.co.uk

For full event details visit – http://www.europeanbikeweek.com/en/home.asp


More Difficulties for Harley Davidson

The world’s best known bike company continues to struggle against adversity and has been dealt another blow with its long time advertising company Carmichael Lynch no longer wanting to work with them.  Carmichael Lynch have reportedly said they’ve basically exhausted their ideas to promote HD and are cutting their ties after 31 years of Harley advertising campaigns.  With sales still not recovering due to the economic circumstances, and rumors of a potential move from its home in Milwaukee to Kansas City, or further afield, to save costs, this is a critical time for Harley.

While still popular in America, where motorcycles and Harley Davidson are one and the same, there must be a significant impact internationally from Japanese and European manufacturers as the sheer numbers of bikes of all types for all abilities squeeze HD out of the market.

Price cuts in the UK have just been announced to try to stimulate interest, with £700 being cut from the Nightrod Special as one example.

The European Bike Week event taking place in Austria this week is a very successful Harley Davidson sponsored affair and is expected to attract some 100,000 bikers, with Harley bringing in Sturgis stars and others to showcase their machines.  However its hard to see a European riders swapping their Ducati road going missile for the comfort and chrome of a Harley.

HD is going to have to start thinking outside the box to turn things around.  Obviously, like every business, the recession has been very damaging, but perhaps they were a bit short sighted to cast off Buell in a rush, as there were some excellent machines due from their subsidiary which marketed right could have helped financially.  Or perhaps Harleys have reached saturation point in the market as they have been around for a hell of a long time now.  It’s always said that every biker should own a Harley at some point in their biking life, perhaps everybody has.

While it’s unlikely Harley will fail they’d better stop scaring us!

Teaser Video for the new KTM 125cc ‘Streetfighter’

KTM have released a new teaser video showing its upcoming 125, currently called the ‘Streetfighter’ under testing and construction.  It looks like a great bike and could do big things for the company globally depending on its price when it comes to market.

The market for 125cc bikes is huge but can go unnoticed in Europe and the USA amongst the sportsbikes and big cruisers.  A great looking bike with decent performance could be also be a useful incentive for more young people to take up biking, espically with the numbers walking away from it in the UK at shockingly high numbers.

Follow news on the new bike on its Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/ktm125


Ducati – The Story, the definitive Ducati history on DVD

Ducati is launching the definitive history of its company’s history in a new DVD to be released this July.  Ducati – The Story features archive footage and photographs never seen before as well as interviews with almost anyone related to the success of the Italian company since 1926 when it was formed.

The official word on the film states ; ‘Ducati presents its history on a stunning movie on DVD. Premiered at World Ducati Week 2010, the DVD is now available at the Misano World Circuit, the Ducati Museum bookshop and Factory Store and will be available in Ducati Stores around the world. Soon, it can also be ordered online.’

The web site for ordering http://www.strikevideo.it/ is still under construction but worth keeping an eye on.

You can see the trailer for Ducati -The Story below.

The DVD will be available from Ducati outlets and dealerships from July 2010

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Important Stories on “Write To Ride”

Our motorcycling partners over at Write To Ride have highlighted a couple of important stories of late and make a good case for better representation of bikers rights.

The 1st is the horrific tale of a fellow biker in Norway that, after being run down and seriously injured by a car driver, has found no justice or recompense for his accident as a judge has let off the driver in question!  The reason being, and I kid you not, was that the motorcycle was harder to see than a car.  Is that to be an official excuse now for hitting bikes;

“I couldn’t really see the bike your honor they’re not as wide as a car y’know.”
“Oh that’s ok if the other guy was stupid enough to ride a motorcycle the risk is his and I’m sure you had a good look around you, case dismissed.”

Head over to Write To Ride for more on this story and how you can lend your voice to the Norwegian Motorcyclists Union in support of the injured biker.


The 2nd story involves the new Roads Safety Strategy for Northern Ireland.  The Department of the Environment’s (DOE) Minister, Edwin Poots has launched the DOE’s consultation paper to prepare a new road safety strategy for Northern Ireland which will cover the years 2010 to 2020.

The Minister said: “Improvement is also necessary to reduce injuries to older pedestrians and motorcyclists and to deal with the increased risks faced by children in areas of deprivation.  To be effective a new strategy must tackle these issues.

Write to Ride covers the details of the proposed Strategy here and voices its concerns on some of the suggestions targeted at motorcyclists.

Ride The Wild Wind agrees wholeheartedly with the opinions of Write to Ride in this matter and would encourage our readers to give their support to Write To Ride which is fast becoming the voice for riders rights in Northern Ireland.  RTWW has heard many complaints about the lack of action by other riders rights organisations in the UK and how they’re lethargic approach to the machinations of Europe, and local government, are letting Brussels buffoons walk all over us.  This isn’t the case with Write To Ride who have been very active in challenging anti-bike bias and keeping a watchful eye on riders rights in general.  Head over to their site today and show your support.

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KTM Jumps on the Electric Bandwagon

Austrian motorcycle company KTM is about to hop aboard the electric bike bandwagon with two concepts due to be unveiled at the 37th Tokyo Motorcycle Show which starts on March 26th.  The teaser image KTM released doesn’t tell us much beyond the concepts striking similarity to another electric bike makers super-moto machines (cough! ZERO cough!)  The major difference is the other manufacturer has theirs on sale now.  Hopefully more details will be available during the show.

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A Bike Week for Ireland?

It’s Daytona time again for our biker friends in the USA.  Bike Week 2010 marks the 69th prestigious year for this annual motorcycle festival, known far and wide as the ‘Worlds Largest Motorcycle Event’ for its estimated 500,000 visitors who attend each year.  I’ve mentioned before in this blog that I feel here in Ireland we’re missing out.

A huge event could be a tourism boost for the Emerald Isle and go a long way to showcasing motorcycling in a good light, which would be helpful in stopping anti-bike bias from government.  Biking is still seen as a niche ‘hobby’ and a dangerous one at that.  Calls to banish bikes to the sports track, if we’re lucky, have been muttered around the halls of Strasbourg for some time now.  Biking is a legitimate form of transport, and for those who label it a hobby, I’ll agree it does have a sporting, classic heritage, and custom element, but so do cars, so why the difference?

The public still see us as trouble makers it would seem, and I’ve heard some people class us in the same grouping as ASBO badged hoodies!  A huge public event to show people the truth, fun, and camaraderie, behind biking would help us create and maintain a useful public profile, a very effective weapon in lobbying efforts to keep small-minded politicians at bay.

I’m still considering an ‘Ireland Bike Week’ and will be looking for your thoughts and opinions over the next few months.  RTWW is putting together a Facebook page to better communicate ideas such as this and it’ll be launching shortly.  So start thinking of ideas for Ireland’s Bike Week, the benefits as outlined are important but other considerations can be demonstrated with some images from Daytona;

For the Guys….

For the ladies…   (Sorry this is the most strikingly handsome biker I could find, no beer gut, neat facial hair, etc)