Inta Bikes

Trial Magazine - - NEWS - AR­TI­CLE: JOHN HULME WITH AUSTIN HOLMES

AN AROMA OF MO­TOR­CY­CLES

When you walk into the premises the aroma of mo­tor­cy­cling, where old meets new, is some­thing that wants bot­tling up and sell­ing, and I was gen­uinely sur­prised at such a wide va­ri­ety of mo­tor­cy­cles held un­der one roof. The 70s Kawasaki KH 400 sits proud, wait­ing to be ren­o­vated, and then I spot­ted a Yamaha FSIE from 1977. You may ask where the mo­tor­cy­cle tri­als theme comes in, be­fore I spot­ted a good clean se­lec­tion of se­cond-hand and new-model ma­chines.

This con­verted flour mill had been a mo­tor­cy­cle shop for many years be­fore Austin took it over and turned it into the suc­cess it is to­day. The first floor is where ma­chines, new and sec­ond­hand, are held, along with the very busy work­shop where MOTs, ser­vic­ing and ren­o­va­tions take place. With spare parts cloth­ing and ac­ces­sories on the se­cond floor, the third floor is used for stor­age.

A life­long mo­tor­cy­cle en­thu­si­ast, Austin was born and raised in Jamie Whitham coun­try at Mir­field, near Hud­der­s­field in West York­shire. Austin fol­lowed in the wheels of Whitham into mo­tor­cy­cle rac­ing as the fam­ily moved to the South East in 1985. Road Rac­ing at­tracted spon­sor­ship, which would even­tu­ally take Austin into the mo­tor­cy­cle trade. Nes­tled in one corner of the shop is one of his old rac­ing ma­chines and, as I was about to find out, Austin’s knowl­edge on the sport is se­cond to none. As we talked even fur­ther it be­came clear that, as is the case with most mo­tor­cy­cle deal­ers, Austin is not just a busi­ness­man but also a life­long en­thu­si­ast of any­thing on two wheels. When the op­por­tu­nity came along in May 1995 to open and own his own mo­tor­cy­cle busi­ness, he took it with both hands and Inta Mo­tor­cy­cle Ser­vices was born.

A WIDE SPEC­TRUM

Inta has built up a very strong cus­tomer base over the years, with the abil­ity to meet the de­mands of vir­tu­ally all their cus­tomers as an in­de­pen­dent re­tailer. Whether it’s a tri­als, en­duro, road rider or just a good old mo­tor­cy­cle en­thu­si­ast’s ride, the wide spec­trum of ma­chines avail­able means they can usu­ally ful­fil the cus­tomer’s needs. He also prides him­self on the many re­peat cus­tomers who call in, and it’s usu­ally to dis­cuss a change of ma­chin­ery, hence the wide va­ri­ety avail­able.

A walk up­stairs to the cloth­ing, hel­met, boot and accessory area on the se­cond floor is a real eye opener. With ex­pe­ri­enced and knowl­edge­able staff on hand to an­swer any ques­tions and the large ex­panse of floor space it is easy to browse, try, and pur­chase, with prod­ucts avail­able to suit a wide range of pock­ets. The on­line side of the busi­ness con­tin­ues to ex­pand, where po­ten­tial cus­tomers can view prod­ucts be­fore vis­it­ing the shop to make the pur­chase.

For the tri­als cus­tomer, up­grade parts are avail­able and in stock, as is the wide choice of tri­als-ded­i­cated hel­mets, cloth­ing and boots. Austin is good friends with the Mor­phett and Ely fam­i­lies, who have ben­e­fit­ted from his sup­port along with many oth­ers over the years. Austin’s in­tro­duc­tion to tri­als came through John Shirt Jnr in 1998 when he sold him his first two yel­low 125cc model Gas Gas ma­chines, fol­lowed by the Sherco in 1999 and the Beta in 2000. Not to be left be­hind in the mod­ern world Inta was one of the very first Oset elec­tric mo­tor­cy­cle deal­ers back in 2007.

THE MOD­ERN WORLD

In nearly twenty years of trad­ing Austin has seen many changes but re­mains much fo­cussed on the fu­ture of the busi­ness: “As John has ex­plained, I am very much a mo­tor­cy­cle en­thu­si­ast. In the mod­ern world it’s a case of hav­ing to be di­verse and meet the cus­tomers’ de­mands in all ar­eas, and that’s where we are very strong. On a reg­u­lar ba­sis we have the cus­tomer who wants to pur­chase a se­cond-hand ma­chine and re­turns to have it ser­viced, and off the back of this ex­pe­ri­ence we of­ten end up sell­ing them a newer or even a brand new ma­chine.

“The older cus­tomers like to bring their clas­sic or ren­o­vated ma­chines to us for maybe an MOT or tune up, where they like to know their pride and joy will be looked af­ter. We took on the new SWM fran­chise to of­fer our cus­tomers some­thing a lit­tle dif­fer­ent and this has also worked well. The shop is al­ways busy and with five staff on-hand it has a great fam­ily feel with my­self steer­ing the ship. I am very for­tu­nate to re­main in­volved in the mo­tor­cy­cle scene, which is where my pas­sion has al­ways been”.

Here at Trial Magazine we love to make the Dealer Visit fea­tures, as in many cases we never re­ally know what we will find un­til we make that visit. We had spo­ken many times with Austin Holmes who is the very proud owner of Inta Mo­tor­cyle Ser­vices on the phone, but as is usu­ally the case we had never met in per­son. Austin had showed faith in Trial Magazine way back in 2007 when we started the pub­li­ca­tion here in the UK, mak­ing his first ap­pear­ance in is­sue 5. In late April I made the trip ‘Down South’ and what I was about to find most cer­tainly opened my eyes!

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