Ponytails and petite are the new tattoos and leather at this weekend’s Progressive International Motorcycle Show at the Jacob Javits Center.
Diane Howells, proprietor of the Motorcycle Safety School’s Bronx and Brooklyn offices, told Metro that women are cropping up more on city motorcycles and in her classes. Women currently represent 20 percent of her students — a big jump from when she bought her first bike.
“When I started riding, I was the only girl,” she said.
Throughout the weekend, the motorcycle show is sponsoring a Women Ride Experience, with ladies’ gear, bikes and seminars — a response to high female interest, spokeswoman DeeDee Taft said.
Female riders are coming in for their own motorbike licenses, tired of using their boyfriend for his ride, Howells said.
“I got to the point where I was like, ‘I don’t need to get on someone else’s bike. I can get my own bike,’” said Upper West Side resident Veronica Rosa, 27, who got her license at the school last summer during what she laughingly called a “mid-20s crisis.”
After getting her license last July, Catherine Moreno of Roslyn, L.I., says she’ll attend the show to find a female-friendly bike.
What’s the appeal? Rosa loves the independence of taking on the open road. “I love having the wind in my hair,” she said.
Raymond Lopez, 44, instructor and site manager at the Motorcycle Safety School, welcomes the change. “There is no stereotypical biker anymore,” he said. “The picture of the tattooed guy with the beard and the long hair, that no longer exists.”