Ex­clu­sive Nick Bloor in­ter­view,

Tri­umph’s head hon­cho speaks ex­clu­sively about his first time on a bike, what makes his com­pany tick and what the fu­ture holds…

BIKE (UK) - - CONTENTS - By John West­lake Pho­tog­ra­phy Grant Evans

NICK BLOOR HAS been CEO of Tri­umph for seven years, over­see­ing the com­pany’s con­tin­ual growth – in terms of prof­itabil­ity and model range. Like his fa­ther, who bought the re­mains of Tri­umph in 1983 and launched it afresh in 1990, Nick is ex­tremely wary of the me­dia and avoids in­ter­views. We’ve been ask­ing for one for years, and never got a word. Un­til now. So set­tle back and en­joy a world ex­clu­sive in­ter­view with the boss of Bri­tain’s great­est mo­tor­cy­cle com­pany…

Let’s start with an easy one. What’s your ear­li­est bik­ing mem­ory? Rid­ing my mate’s Honda Z50R monkey bike in the lo­cal farmer’s field when I was about seven, and from 14 I started work­ing on Satur­day morn­ings and hol­i­days at Tri­umph where I got my first ride on a big bike.

What’s your favourite bike in the cur­rent line-up, and why? That’s a re­ally hard ques­tion as there are so many to choose from, and all mean so much to me. If I had to pick one I guess it would be my own mod­i­fied Bon­neville T120, just be­cause it’s such an easy ride and looks awe­some.

What are the most im­por­tant busi­ness lessons you learned from your dad? Again that’s a re­ally hard one as he has been so fun­da­men­tal to ev­ery part of how we work to­day. That said if I had to pick on one it would be that the team are ev­ery­thing – the peo­ple who have made Tri­umph, what they have given and what they con­tinue to give. Their pas­sion and com­mit­ment goes far beyond be­ing just about a job… we sim­ply wouldn’t be here with­out them.

Of all the pro­to­types you’ve rid­den, which was the one that gave you the strong­est ‘we’re onto a win­ner here’ feel­ing, and why? With­out doubt the Bob­ber – it was just some­thing that put the big­gest grin on my face from the first time I rode it.

Can mo­tor­cy­cling in the UK grow? What are the chal­lenges to mo­tor­cy­cling in the UK? There are many chal­lenges to rid­ing in­clud­ing fi­nance, in­sur­ance and get­ting your li­cence – but as rid­ers we know there is some­thing spe­cial about mo­tor­cy­cling and in to­day’s world where peo­ple hold an even higher re­gard for ex­pe­ri­ences and their per­sonal free­dom we [Tri­umph] are op­ti­mistic. One of the big­gest is­sues we see for our­selves and the whole mo­tor­cy­cle world is in how we all make it eas­ier for peo­ple to ex­pe­ri­ence the joys of mo­tor­cy­cling.

Where is Tri­umph’s growth go­ing to come from in the next few years? We see sig­nif­i­cant growth in the next few years com­ing from Asian mar­kets, how­ever we also see sev­eral ex­cit­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties in the Western world.

What’s the next ‘big thing’ in bik­ing? And how are Tri­umph pre­par­ing for it? We have sharp­ened our fo­cus in the last few years onto the Ur­ban, Clas­sic and Ad­ven­ture cat­e­gories. Hav­ing this fo­cus has en­abled us to in­vest in ex­plor­ing ex­cit­ing new con­cepts and in­no­va­tions in each area, such as with the Bob­ber chas­sis de­sign and our class lead­ing TFT in­stru­ment set-up. That said we are of course al­ways lis­ten­ing to our rid­ers and con­stantly evolv­ing our ap­proach to re­flect what they want and need, and can see sev­eral big themes to rid­ers’ grow­ing ex­pec­ta­tions on is­sues, such as con­nec­tiv­ity and ur­ban mo­bil­ity.

Which non-tri­umph busi­ness leader or exec do you ad­mire most, and why? I can’t think of a sin­gle in­di­vid­ual who cap­tures all the val­ues most im­por­tant in my mind: orig­i­nal­ity, drive and de­ter­mi­na­tion, treat­ing peo­ple as your num­ber one assets with re­spect and value, and al­ways in­vest­ing in the fu­ture.

Given the 675 Day­tona is dis­con­tin­ued, why are Tri­umph sup­ply­ing en­gines to Moto2? The Tri­umph 765cc Moto2 en­gines are a di­rect devel­op­ment from our class lead­ing Street Triple RS, which it­self was de­rived from the 675cc en­gine of the Day­tona. Our ex­clu­sive part­ner­ship with DORNA to sup­ply the en­gines for the 2019 season on­wards re­flects the growth of the per­for­mance naked cat­e­gory and our rid­ers’ pas­sion for rac­ing.

Why are all Tri­umphs get­ting big­ger and faster? Isn’t there space for an en­try-level, cheer­ful, high-fun road-bi­ased, gen­uine mid­dleweight like the orig­i­nal Street Triple? We, like our rid­ers, are al­ways driven to take ev­ery op­por­tu­nity to make things bet­ter, and per­for­mance, weight and tech­nol­ogy evolution is a key part of that drive and pas­sion. That said we can cer­tainly see that there is an ap­petite and op­por­tu­nity for more en­try level mod­els and we are con­tin­u­ously re­view­ing our line-up to de­liver the best Tri­umph range pos­si­ble. An ex­am­ple of this for me would be our Street Twin, which is not only our big­gest mod­ern clas­sic seller but also at­tracts the high­est per­cent­age of rid­ers to Tri­umph who are new to mo­tor­cy­cling.

Ev­ery­one else seems to be ex­plor­ing electric mo­tor­cy­cles. Are Tri­umph? And if not, will you? It is fas­ci­nat­ing to see how new tech­nolo­gies are evolv­ing and we con­tinue to keep a very close eye on all new de­vel­op­ments that can be ap­plied to mo­tor­cy­cling. We are ac­tively in dis­cus­sions with ex­perts in this area and are con­tin­u­ally re­view­ing our op­tions.

Monkey bike: Nick’s ear­li­est rid­ing mem­ory

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