Dealers, exhibitors like V-Twin Expo

The big talk among dealers and vendors (other than the price of the products being discussed) was “are you going to Indy?” Ever since the V-Twin started three years ago, the competition between the V-Twin show and the Dealer Expo in Indianapolis in attracting manufacturers and dealers has been the hot topic. Most dealers we talked with were only going to attend the V-Twin show. But many of them also said they could only afford to go to one show.
Don Garrick, owner of Desert Thunder Cycle Works in St. George, Utah, had no plans to attend Indianapolis. It was his first time at the V-Twin show. He was impressed by the showing of manufacturers, and said he had no need for Indy. “I think the V-Twin show is great. I’m getting hooked up with different vendors. I like the show specials. I get a little extra discount for the rest of the year — that helps. Also, the seminar on insurance was a good thing.”
Ted Sands of Performance Machine also found the majority of the 20 dealers he had spoken with said they were only going to attend V-Twin. “I think this show is good for a lot of independent shops,” he said. “It’s very Harley-oriented and that’s all they want to see. Plus, it’s an opportunity for smaller companies to display here that can’t get the time of day out of Indy as far as booth location. They can come here and get more exposure, versus getting stuck on the third floor at Indy.”
V-Twin Show Manager Jim Betlach was optimistic. “A lot of our vendors have gotten bigger booths this year. We expanded into the other side of the floor over there,” pointing to the additional floor space added to this year’s show. “We did a good job of getting all the major and minor players who we wanted here.”
Bob Lundquist, president of Hot Toppers, likes the intimate atmosphere of the V-Twin show. “We’d rather have 10 good prospects than 100 people kicking tires.” Lundquist said he decided to attend Indy at the last minute when he was offered a good spot.

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