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An ongoing series of riders' stories that showcase the diversity and shared passions in motorcycling; spreading the joys of motorcycling near and far.

IKEDI ONYEMAOBIM
PHILADELPHIA, PA

Read Ikedi's
Rider Story...

MITCH TROM
EYOTA, MN

Read Mitch's
Rider Story...

MIKI MASUDA
CALIFORNIA

READ MIKI'S
RIDER STORY...

JONATHAN PEIL
SAINT LOUIS PARK, MN

Read Jonathan's
Rider Story...

LUCINDA BELDEN
USA

Read Lucinda's
Rider Story...

MICHELLE REINES
CHINO, CA

READ MICHELLE'S
RIDER STORY...

JONATHAN PEIL

"One day out riding I was watching the fish in the Mississippi jump as I rode down the road, I thought to myself there’s nothing better than this. Nothing more free. Nothing more enjoyable."

 

- Jonathan Peil

What do you currently ride and what was your first ride?

Currently a 2000 Suzuki GZ250 cafe racer that I am custom building to be the bike I ride to Sturgis.  People can follow this build on TikTok @john..93.  My first bike was a Yamaha PW50. 

 

 

How Long Have You Been Riding?

10 Years

 

 

How did you get started? 

My brother got a dirt bike for his birthday and he didn’t ride it much, so I did! I started to learn to weld at a young age too, so that I could one day build my own bike.

 

 

What do you like most about riding?

The Freedom.

 

 

Tell us your favorite riding memory?

One day out riding I was watching the fish in the Mississippi jump as I rode down the road, I thought to myself there’s nothing better than this. Nothing more free. Nothing more enjoyable. 

 

 

If you could take a trip on 2-wheels, where would you go and with who?

I'd go to Sturgis with my roommate/best friend because I’ve always wanted to go. 

 

Follow John on Social Media:
tiktok: @john..93
IG: @john_boy242

 

LUCINDA BELDEN

"I listed my hometown as the USA because my husband and I travel and work full-time in our fifth wheel RV.  It's a toy hauler so we bring along our bikes.  We stay about a month in each new location and our route is primarily plotted and determined by the next best ride."

 

- Lucinda Belden

What do you currently ride and what was your first ride?

Currently a 2013 Harley-Davidson 1200C Sportster with a sidecar.  My first motorcycle was a 2016 Harley-Davidson 1200T Sportster. 

 

 

How Long Have You Been Riding?

3 Years

 

 

How did you get started? 

I like to travel via all kinds of transportation.  I was introduced to motorcycles at a very late age, but am so glad I discovered riding.  Riding is at the center of everything I do.

 

 

What do you like most about riding?

Taking really deep breaths and never knowing what I'm going to smell :-)

 

 

Tell us your favorite riding memory?

I was riding through Custer State Park and rode past the Wilderness Loop - I was concerned about coming across herds on a motorcycle.  I wasn't but a few miles past the loop when I saw buffalo coming across the road.  As I rounded a bend, there were hundreds crossing over the fields and road.  I was going down a slight hill and was able to keep rolling as I reached in my bag and pulled out my phone.  This was the most amazing experience.  I could have never planned an encounter like this or been in a better spot to capture it forever on video, those magnificent beasts and their wild calves.

 

 

If you could take a trip on 2-wheels, where would you go and with who?

It would be a 3-wheeled trip for me with a sidecar and I would go with my husband.  He rides a Harley-Davidson Heritage.  Honestly, anywhere you put my bike down, I will ride it and love it. A few places high on my bucket list are Australia, Machu Pichu and the 13 colonies right here in the good ole USA.

 

 

Anything to add to your rider story?

I listed my hometown as the USA because my husband and I travel and work full-time in our fifth wheel RV.  It's a toy hauler so we bring along our bikes.  We stay about a month in each new location and our route is primarily plotted and determined by the next best ride.  We started in Dallas, Texas, where we sold our house and everything we owned so we could ride new areas!  In the last six months we have ridden through Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, South Dakota, Wyoming, Tennessee and the Carolinas hitting motorcycle museums, Sturgis, Tail of the Dragon, Bike Rallies and unique things each state offers.

 

I was a travel agent working on the road only one month when Covid hit.  Through my love of riding and connections there I continued to work on travel, but focused more on travel writing.  I have articles with The Sidecarist, Rootless Living and a column with Ride Texas magazine.  And I also just wrote a booklet - 14 Sturgis Rides in 6 Days available on Amazon.  My love of riding has saved me through this pandemic in so many ways.

 

Follow Lucinda on Social Media:
FB: @directionwideopen
FB: @Twistyourthrottle
IG: @directionwideopen

 

MICHELLE REINES

"The very first time I️ wrapped around my now hubby on his bike as a passenger...I️ soaked my helmet and was overwhelmed with pure love and joy!  As a rider, [my favorite riding memory was] my first road trip on my vintage Transalp with hubby and friends up to Paso Robles during Covid lockdown.  The roads were wide open, the weather was perfect, and the scenery was breathtaking! "

 

- Michelle Reines

What do you currently ride and what was your first ride?

Currently a Honda Transalp 1990 vintage, Yamaha TTR230 and Kawasaki KFX400.  My first motorcycle was the Yamaha TTR230. 

 

 

How Long Have You Been Riding?

Since 7 as a passenger, then 48 as a legal rider...see below for more details about the ride.

 

 

How did you get started? 

Ever since I can remember I’ve had a passion for motorcycles! Being a Tom-girl at heart, I even had a bedtime skit I would perform for my parents most nights before I rode off on my imaginary motorcycle to bed.

 

Then in my twenties, I was once again a happy passenger on the back of a Honda Shadow 750.  I thoroughly enjoyed weekend getaways and night rides under the stars with my "then" husband, until my relationship ended in divorce and my affair with him and motorcycles came to a screeching halt. It wasn’t until his family reached out to me 11 years later to let me know he had terminal cancer and desperately wanted to see me one last time for closure and forgiveness. It was then, when he asked me to make him a promise, when I went back to my life in Cali, I would go to a biker bar on my birthday and toast to a new beginning or reawakening…to finding me again, as well as reigniting my passion for motorcycles. 

 

I kept my promise, and 7 days later on my 48th birthday in 2012, I went to Cook’s Corner in Southern California to toast to new beginnings!  That very afternoon, I met my now hubby, who is a passionate dirt and street rider – I consider him to be the best gift my ex ever gave me!  I am no longer a passionate passenger however, I’m a rider!

 

 

What do you like most about riding?

The feeling of freedom, the playfulness and shared experience with people I️ care about...I️ also enjoy the variety of dirt to road - I️ feel so connected to the smells, sounds and I️ am fully present when I️ ride. It's invigorating!! Another one of my favorite things about riding in general is that it seems as if there are no strangers when you pull up on a bike, you're immediately a member of the club in so many ways.  If I️ walked up to a Nissan driver and starting chatting with them they would think I️ was weird and would be paranoid...it's not like that with riders, it's almost expected and always welcome.

 

 

Tell us your favorite riding memory?

Wow this is a hard one, I have so many epic memories, this one however, was most emotionally meaningful for me as a passenger - The very first time I️ wrapped around my "now" hubby on his bike as a passenger...I️ soaked my helmet and was overwhelmed with pure love and joy!  As a rider, my first road trip on my vintage Transalp with hubby and friends up to Paso Robles during Covid lockdown.  The roads were wide open, the weather was perfect, and the scenery was breathtaking!  Rolling vineyards, riding up the coastline and private lockdown balcony dinners with 4 friends on quarantine.  Paso was like a ghost town and the roads were our playground.

 

 

If you could take a trip on 2-wheels, where would you go and with who?

From So Cal to Utah to Zion, Bryce, and Powell then take the roads up to Bozeman onward to Big Sky Montana with my hubby and friends.

 

 

Anything to add to your rider story?

In fact, this very story about my journey to becoming a motorcyclist provoked me to build a brand inspired by motorcycles  - Badass Leader.  I was fortunate to have Bryan H. Carroll from the award-winning movie Why We Ride not only write the testimonial for my book, but there are also multiple quotes from his epic movie throughout the book.  My Badass Leader brand is an homage in many ways to my long-held passion for the motorcycle community and the metaphor it represents for leadership and Badass Teams who look out for one another. My book is called From Bad to Badass Leader – 12 Leadership Lessons; in it I share my lessons learned during my epic ride in learning how to lead like a Badass.  #LivetoLead

 

Follow Michelle on Social Media:
FB: @badassleader12
IG: @badassleader12
Twitter: @michellereines
LinkedIn: @michelledreines

IKEDI ONYEMAOBIM

"I will never forget the way that yellow Honda CBR moved past me that day. Fast forward over a decade later, I bought my first bike and I’ve been sending it ever since. "

 

- Ikedi Onyemaobim

What do you currently ride and what was your first ride?

Currently a 2004 Triumph Thruxton 900 cafe and my first motorcycle was a 2011 Kawasaki Ninja 250. 

 

 

How Long Have You Been Riding?

9 Years

 

 

How did you get started? 

Growing up in West Philadelphia, one thing you quickly realize is that motorcycles and quads are a way of life. I will never forget the day my need for speed was officially born. I was at a church picnic and suddenly, a full platoon of motorcycles and quads came ripping down the street. I was mesmerized.  Later that evening, I went home and began a weeks long process of obsessively trying to replicate one of the bikes I’d seen that day in my art pad. I later submitted the drawing to a city-wide competition, and the drawing won the first place prize. I will never forget the way that yellow Honda CBR moved past me that day. Fast forward over a decade later, I bought my first bike and I’ve been sending it ever since. 

 

 

What do you like most about riding?

When you get into a good riding rhythm, the flow of it all just feels like poetry in motion.  

 

 

Tell us your favorite riding memory?

My favorite riding memory takes me back to when my brother unveiled his Triumph Daytona during a trip back home to Pennsylvania from Los Angeles. I was proud that he was all-in on Triumphs, but especially thankful for the fact that I could now share my love of motorcycles with my older brother. 

 

 

If you could take a trip on 2-wheels, where would you go?

I’d head to State Route 26 in California. 

 

Follow Ikedi on Social Media:
IG: @kedskorner

 

MITCH TROM

"I've had between 1-3 bikes in my garage since '86. I love 'em all. I was a street bike guy until 2005 when I retired from the Army. Then I started racing Motocross with my boy. He has since joined the Airforce and I am forced to race without him. I can’t quit now I’m only 57!"

 

- Mitch Trom

What do you currently ride and what was your first ride?

Currently I ride a Honda Goldwing, Yamaha SCR950 and Yamaha YZ450F. My first motorcycle was a 1982 Yamaha Maxim 550.

 

 

How Long Have You Been Riding?

34 Years

 

 

How did you get started? 

I wanted a fast car but could only afford a bike. I always wanted a Motorcycle when I was growing up, but Mom and Dad said, “No way. Too dangerous.“

 

 

What do you like most about riding?

Quite Freedom. No phones. No media.

 

 

Tell us your favorite riding memory?

Racing Pike’s Peak in 2010 & 2011. The last 2 years with dirt sections of the track.

 

 

If you could take a trip on 2-wheels, where would you go and with who?

I’d go back to the Alps in South Germany & Austria with my wife. We lived in Germany for 7 of my 20 years in the Army. Beautiful place, and a great place to ride.

 

 

Anything to add to your rider story?

I’ve had between 1-3 bikes in my garage since '86. I love 'em all. I was a street bike guy until 2005 when I retired from the Army. Then I started racing Motocross with my boy. He has since joined the Airforce and I am forced to race without him. I can’t quit now I’m only 57!



 

MIKI MASUDA

"It was my childhood dream to ride cross-county in America with an American bike, a Harley. I flew to Florida, rented a Harley Sportster 1200cc, and rode back to California in two weeks."

 

- Miki Masuda

What do you currently ride and what was your first ride?

Currently I ride a 2020 Triumph Bonneville T120 Black and 2014 Bonneville T100.  After starting out on a scooter, my first motorcycle was a Suzuki TU250.  In Japan, it was called Suzuki Volty 250.

 

 

How Long Have You Been Riding?

4 years in California

 

 

How did you get started? 

My dad had a Honda CB750 that I had never seen him ride.  I sat on the dusty and rusty bike and pretended I was riding. That was my first experience on the bike. When I became 16. I got a 50cc scooter but wanted to ride a bigger bike.  My parents are old-school Japanese people that think women shouldn't ride a motorcycle. I got a license and bought a bike secretly and brought them back home.  As you can guess, they went nuts, lol.

 

 

What do you like most about riding?

Feeling. Air, scenery, sounds. Everything is more direct when you ride a motorcycle.

 

 

Tell us your favorite riding memory?

It's hard to pick just one. I love girls group rides, such as going to Babes Ride Out, but my favorite is always the solo riding.

 

I did a solo cross country trip a few years ago.  It was my childhood dream to ride cross-county in America with an American bike, a Harley. I flew to Florida, rented a Harley Sportster 1200cc, and rode back to California in two weeks. It wasn't really a solo trip because I met nice European guys who were doing the same thing so I tagged along. 

 

Also, I just did a solo Colorado, Utah, Arizona, Nevada, and California trip for 9 days. I took all back roads and canyons. It was a lost on purpose kind of trip. Since last year, I become addicted to riding on twisties, this trip was nothing but twisties.

 

 

If you could take a trip on 2-wheels, where would you go and with who?

I've visited most of the states by riding a motorcycle or driving a car.  And have only 8 states left. My next trip will be to Alaska.  I will rent an adventure bike and ride as long as I can. I prefer to go by myself, but since I don't know anything about Alaska, I might join a tour.

 

 

 

Follow Miki on Social Media:
IG: @bikermiki

 

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