New Sisters motorsport shop puts locals on two wheels
Last updated 9/28/2021 at Noon
The community of motorsports enthusiasts who call Sisters home have a new headquarters: Sisters Moto, located at the west end of the Three Wind Shopping Center, near Bi-Mart.
The shop has been open for a few months now, and they’ll be revving up their engines to celebrate with a Grand Opening on Saturday, October 2. Riders of all ages will enjoy a chance to visit with vendors, and may be able to pick up a vital piece of gear at an outstanding price in clearance, consignment, and sample sales.
Sisters Moto is a family endeavor for Austin and Elizabeth (Biz) Brent and their children Verbena, Dixon, and Adelaide. Austin has roots in the industry that go back to an Iowa farm, where a teenager first felt the pull of high-speed, dirt track motorcycle riding. Motocross became a way of life and a livelihood for Brent. He and Biz met while at Portland State University and spent several years in Portland, where Austin worked for Motosport.com. They eventually moved to Luxembourg, where Austin managed the motorcycle segment for a European e-commerce company. Wanting to leave the corporate world behind, they moved to Sisters in 2017.
The kids all ride and Biz describes herself as “a motocross mom.”
The family has a very specific vision for Sisters Moto. They carry premier product lines — with a Central Oregon exclusive on Seven MX performance apparel. They stock Shoei helmets, and custom Gaerne boots from Italy. And they keep their shelves well supplied, which is very good news for riders who often have to order and wait for the gear they need.
But Sisters Moto is about much more than providing quality gear for riders — it’s about building a community and a culture.
Already, young people have discovered that Sisters Moto is a great place to hang out and find likeminded people who feel the need for speed. There’s always some motocross action playing on the big-screen TV.
“The kids come and hang out after school,” Biz Brent said.
Sisters Moto sponsors young riders — but not solely based on their aptitude on the course. The Brents also support personal qualities that used to fall under the rubric of “good citizenship.”
Sponsored riders will be on hand at the Grand Opening to talk about what it’s like riding for a team.
The youngest riders will be out on Saturday on tiny STACYC electric bikes, ripping along a specially prepared course at the front of the shopping center.
Riding is truly a family affair, and when a youngster catches the fire, it doesn’t leave him. That’s Austin Brent’s own story, after all. He shares a deep passion for the sport that captured him when he was a teen, the one he built his life and livelihood around.
“It’s you and your bike,” he said. “You can push your own limits. You’re not waiting for the quarterback to throw it to you.”
Riding is a reward in and of itself. For many people, it’s therapeutic. You can climb on a bike and let the cares of the day fall away. Whatever baggage you’re carrying gets left behind, at least for a little while, because “you can’t bring that with you on the bike,” Austin said.
Whether it’s on the road, on the dirt and gravel roads in the Sisters backcountry, or on a dirt track, a wide variety of people can ride together, each getting what they need from the experience, and coming back smiling.
Michael Fry has been riding for 57 years.
“I ride a KTM 890 Adventure R,” he said.
He’s a regular customer — and has been since day one. His wife heard at the nail salon that a motorcycle shop was going in at Three Wind, and he popped in when the Brents were just starting to remodel the space. He’s been a regular ever since.
“I’m just so tickled to have them here,” he told The Nugget. “I can come here and get what I need, and get a tire changed— and watch what I watch at home. They have more things than most places in Bend.”
Fry confirms that there is a very substantial, though not especially visible, subculture of motorsports enthusiasts like him in Sisters. And it’s a real community that connects around a passion.
“It’s kind of like an equestrian culture — riding on a mechanical horse,” he said.
That culture will be on full display in a rendezvous and celebration on Saturday, on the west end of the parking lot at Three Winds Shopping Center, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.