Craigs Mo­tor­cy­cles

Trial Magazine - - TRIAL MAGAZINE - WORDS AND PIC­TURES: JOHN HULME

At this year’s hugely pop­u­lar Telford Clas­sic Off-Road Show the news that Jeff Smith, the ex-BSA works rider, would be pre­sent­ing his new au­to­bi­og­ra­phy was wel­come news. Hav­ing a trade stand our­selves I was in the hall early, with Jeff Smith sat right next door where he would be sign­ing copies of his new book. Craig Holmes turned up nice and early too, and we be­gan chat­ting. The con­ver­sa­tion turned to the suc­cess story of his busi­ness, Craigs Mo­tor­cy­cles. He told me that the busi­ness would be 10 years old in Septem­ber and my an­swer to that was ‘Maybe it’s time to do a dealer visit’; and so the in­vi­ta­tion was made and we ar­rived in Dews­bury to meet the fam­ily-run busi­ness to gen­er­ate this ar­ti­cle.

The move to open a new mo­tor­cy­cle shop was a brave but well thought-out plan. It was not a ra­tio­nal de­ci­sion, but one that Craig be­lieved in and that would work. He had 40 years of ex­pe­ri­ence in the trade and was a for­mer di­rec­tor of an­other well-known mo­tor­cy­cle busi­ness in the York­shire area.

A new Start

Hav­ing worked in the in­dus­try, Craig knew what di­rec­tion he wanted to move in, and with it came his then young son Aaron who, de­spite his young age, had al­ready gained five years’ ex­pe­ri­ence. He was fresh and ready to move into the big wide world of the mo­tor­cy­cle in­dus­try, know­ing that for any ad­vice he only had to turn to his fa­ther.

The be­gin­ning of Craigs Mo­tor­cy­cles was in Septem­ber 2008 when they opened the doors on the Dews­bury store. The first fran­chise they would look at and then take on­board was with Honda and KTM, two huge play­ers in the mo­tor­cy­cle world.

With many contacts in the trade, they would soon at­tract the cloth­ing and ac­ces­sory side of the mar­ket and soon started to stock all the ma­jor brands, who wanted to be part of an over­all big­ger pic­ture fur­ther down the road with this new ven­ture.

Ex­pan­sion

Af­ter the first five years and, with a healthy or­der book, the de­ci­sion was made to ex­pand the busi­ness. With daugh­ter Natasha now work­ing the ac­counts de­part­ment, the sec­ond branch was opened in Ship­ley, Brad­ford, at the for­mer Alan Jef­feries BMW shop for a Honda Road fran­chise run by Craig’s other son Matthew.

Now with two out­lets to of­fer to the grow­ing or­der books Yamaha, Kawasaki, Mon­tesa and Husq­varna fran­chises were added to the Dews­bury store. The Mon­tesa name is very much a part of the tri­als scene and also as­so­ci­ated with Honda and, at the end of 2013 just as the up­dated Cota 260cc model was in­tro­duced, it was added to the other wide range of ma­chines on of­fer. Since this was added, it’s al­lowed the tri­als side of the busi­ness to ex­pand.

Aaron has suc­cess­fully fol­lowed in his fa­ther’s foot­steps, en­dors­ing the fam­ily suc­cess story.

TRIAL MAGAZINE Cus­tomer care is para­mount; here Jack can be seen work­ing with a valued cus­tomer.

Work­shop fa­cil­i­ties are sec­ond to none, avail­able for ser­vic­ing and the fit­ting of up­grade parts.

The mod­ern show­room cov­ers a mul­ti­tude of ma­chines and prod­ucts all on dis­play in a very re­laxed en­vi­ron­ment.

Work­ing with Aaron Holmes at Craigs Mo­tor­cy­cles Gra­ham Foster-Vig­ors the Honda (HME-UK) Off Road Sales Man­ager, seen here on the right, has been very in­stru­men­tal in get­ting Jack Chal­loner back to rid­ing in the Bri­tish Tri­als Cham­pi­onship on Mon­tesa.

Jack Chal­loner can be found at the end of the tele­phone for all tri­als en­quiries or work­ing in the busy show­room.

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