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‘Thunder Press’ recognizes women motorcyclists

AMA Motorcycle Hall of Famer Gloria Tramontin-Struck is this month’s cover subject

Gloria Tramontin-Struck, one of the oldest living AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame inductees, is “motorcycling’s grande dame,” according to the editors of Thunder Press.

“Motor Maid” Gloria Tramontin-Struck joined the AMA in 1946. The 2016 AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame inductee is featured in this month’s issue of “Thunder Press” as part of what its editors call, “a small slice of the female riding universe.” Photo by Michael Lichter/Thunder Press

In fact, the self-described “Journal of the American V-Twin Community” has dedicated much of its May 2020, editorial package—60 pages, to be exact—to women riders, 22 of them, from Kayla Yaakov, 12, to 94-year-old Tramontin-Struck.

“Nearly 80 years ago, when Gloria Tramontin-Struck first began riding,” the introduction to the section begins, “she was denied gas, lodging and ridiculed for riding a motorcycle.

“Fortunately, the world has changed, and today more than 20 percent of riders are female. Those numbers continue to increase as more women discover the life-changing freedom and personal satisfaction that come with riding motorcycles.

“As one woman told us, ‘Every time I ride, it changes my life.’”

“Women Riders World Relay” founder (and 2019 AMA Motorcyclist of the Year) Hayley Bell, teenaged bike builder Emmi Cupp, apparel designer Natalie Kleiner and Michelle DiSalvo, who wrenched Briar Bauman to the 2019 American Flat Track AMA Grand National Championship, are among the individuals profiled.

Bauman’s fiancé, Shayna Texter, AFT’s winningest current Singles rider, also is featured in the special issue, as is Leticia Cline, whose background ranges from acting to journalism.

“I have always said that modeling killed my motorcycle career, and motorcycling killed my modeling career,” Cline said. “I knew it when I posted a photo of my motorcycle on Instagram and it got more likes than me in a bikini.”

Thunder Press Editor-in-Chief Mitch Boehm praised his late mother for the role she played in his life on two wheels.

“When my father broached the idea of me having a minibike in ’70, she obviously agreed—or at least didn’t fight it,” he wrote. “God love that woman!”