Buffalo Chip, S.D., Feb. 8—When seven 12″ tall custom balance bikes crossed the auction block in Las Vegas on Wednesday, January 23, they stopped the show! Built in 2018 by a Flying Piston Benefit program that supports new ridership and career-path jobs for veterans, the bikes were donated by Strider Sports Int’l. and sent to custom motorcycle builders who’d agreed to modify them. The inaugural class of Strider customs were unveiled at the 4th annual Flying Piston Benefit Builders Breakfast held at the Sturgis Buffalo Chip on August 5, 2018.
Stepping up to customize the first-ever Strider customs were: Rick Fairless, Strokers Dallas; Paul Yaffe, Bagger Nation; Kirk Taylor, Custom Design Studios; Jody Perewitz, Perewitz Cycle Fabrication; Pat Patterson, Led Sled Customs; Bryan Fuller, Fuller Moto; and alumni of Motorcycle Missions, a charity that aids U.S. military veterans dealing with PTSD who are pursuing careers in motorcycling—and beneficiary of proceeds from Flying Piston BenefIt. Proceeds from the Flying Piston Benefit have contributed almost $17,000 to Motorcycle Missions and tech ed scholarships.
Said Flying Piston Benefit program director Marilyn Stemp, “Every one of the builders went over the top to create one-off, unique works of art. The little bikes’ diminutive size made them stand out among the 1700 ‘real’ bikes at the auction, earning over $9,000 for our charities.”
Added Flying Piston Benefit’s marketing director Jeff Najar, “We are so grateful to Mecum Auctions, especially Ron Christenson, for making time for our little bikes at the biggest motorcycle event of Mecum’s season. It was a remarkable kindness and a service to the industry’s future.”
Recognition is also due the Flying Piston Benefit’s first-ever presenting sponsor, Russ Brown Motorcycle Attorneys, along with Strider Sports Int’l, Steve’s Garage, Kirsh Helmets and Lincoln Electric.
The 2019 class of Strider builders, to be announced soon, will unveil their creations when builders and industry celebs join with fans and influencers for the 2019 Flying Piston Benefit Breakfast on Sunday, August 4, at the Buffalo Chip CrossRoads. The Breakfast features motorcycle builders whose work is displayed in the Buffalo Chip’s prestigious Motorcycles As Art exhibition, curated by famed moto-photographer Michael Lichter. Tickets at: www.buffalochip.com/EVENTS/Special-Receptions/Flying-Piston-Breakfast