By far our largest market is the United States, followed by Canada, then the UK, and Australia. However, we get orders from other countries all over the world. We have literally shipped our patches to every country in the world, including Afghanistan, Somalia and even the North and South Pole.
We recently found this patch order that we did for the Abuja, Nigeria 09 Biker’s Club, which is a national Nigerian Bikers Club. We located an article about the Abuja, Nigeria 09 Biker’s Club and we had permission to reprint the article on our blog. The article can be found below. The one thing that is amazing is that the President of the Abuja Biker’s Club, Umar Adanan speaks about his biker organization, in almost the exact same way as biker organizations speak about their clubs. All Biker clubs it seems no matter where in the world seem to be united by a true love and passion for their motorcycles. Its obviously a love and passion that far surpasses the love that motorist have for their cars. Umar in his interview talks about the importance of loyalty amongst their members, he talks about the importance of safety, and the thrill of riding around the city. One thing that is interesting that we haven’t heard from an American MC group is that in the Abuja, Nigeria 09 Biker’s Club, you can be a part of the organization even if you don’t have a motorcycle, but just simply love the motorcycle lifestyle. They realize that in a country like Nigeria that is still relatively poor, not everyone can afford a bike. The interview is below. Its a good read. Umar Adanan, President of Abuja 09 Bikers’ Club and Balarabe Musa, the group’s Secretary, got down and dirty, dishing details of their passion for power-bike riding. The following, are excerpts from the interview. What is biking about the way you practice it?Balarabe Musa: It is more than a way of life. It is a passion. It is something we do to exercise our minds. It is just a way to get out of the reality of life basically and it is real pleasure and a hubby. We have been on as a professional club for about three four years.It is also a sport because when you are going to get on a bike you have to be properly kitted and be mentally focused. So in a way it is more or less a sport. The rules apply as it does with most sporting events. What bike brands are the best?Umar Adanan: Naturally even with vehicles, Japanese cars are the cheapest to maintain and run. It is the same with biking. There are Japanese, Italian, German bikes which are all in use for biking. But the Yamahas, Suzukis, Hondas and Kawasakis are the Japanese ones and they are much easier to maintain and the most commonly used even abroad. They are the stronger brands and the parts are cheaper. Would you feel safer in one of those than a BMW double brand?Adanan: Not necessarily. In biking the safety features are similar, because most safety kits are off the bike like you have to come down to your gears. With the bikes in themselves, the only safety accessory they could give you may be better breaking, traction control which mostly may not be practicable on our major roads.With the Italian motor bikes, that would depend on your taste. We have mechanics here in Abuja who specialize more on those type of brands because the other brands especially the Italian ones are not very common.There are many aspects to being a biker. As members of 09 Bikers Club we ensure that we are fully kitted and we have different types of kits depending on your taste and on your pocket (Laughter).From the helmet to boots to body armour and gloves and other little attachments you may want to have as a part of your protective gear. It also depends on what sort of posing you want to do. Biking is about posing as well…Musa: Oh, yes (Laughter) for all that money, it has to be. It comes with the finesse and panache. It comes naturally. It is not a cheap sport; it is very expensive and for all you pay for, you might as well add the pose and elegance to it.On an average, to get a decent bike now, you are looking at no less than N2million. Some are even more expensive and could cost up to N5million and beyond. It is not a sport for every body and we have been particularly careful in recent times to re-establish, re-brand if you like, to make sure our members are fully vetted before they become members. We are putting things in place to ensure that we have appropriate and adequate data like blood group, referees, and are looking to see if we can get group and medical insurance.It is a dangerous sport, and accidents do happens. so you need to be able to ensure that we can cover ourselves as much as possible while making it as professional as possible like the Golf Club is. Why would you need referees?Adanan: To make it as bonafide as possible. This is our way of knowing who our members are and where they come from in the event that anything happens to us, we know who to contact. You are only based in Abuja?Musa: We have clubs around Nigeria in Lagos there are the Easy Riders and the Willers. We are independent and operate ass such but we all come under the Nigerian Bikers’ Association. We have a mailing group and are in touch practically on a daily basis. Are you in anyway related with the Charly Boy group; many people see you as such?Adanan: He is not a part of our group. We are bikers and he is a brand. He is a brand who you can say is synonymous to bikes and not bikers because he uses them for his music and work. Like any other individual can come to us and want to associate with us as a Nigerian citizen which he has done over the past. But as bikers we are not in a group with him. We ride for ourselves and the fun and pleasure of it all. What does it take to be a member?Adanan: The major thing is you have to be passionate about biking. You do not necessarily have to own a bike. You could be a member without owning one because we know they are not cheap. You could be a part of gatherings which take place anywhere depending on who our host is or what the gathering is about. For now Chancellery Hotel is our main meeting point. What is the age limit for membership?Musa: We do not have teenagers on our team. When the members fill in the bio-data form, one of the criteria there says you must be independent and be self-reliant. For obvious reasons with school and all teens cannot cope with our schedule. We have men above age 50 who are actively involved in the club. No women?Adanan: (Laughter) In Abuja there are two of them. But in Lagos there are a lot more. What events have you organized?Adanan: In Abuja we have done what we tagged ‘Feed a thousand orphans’. Basically we do charity rides. We also did one for the children in Akwa Ibom accused of being witches. We rode there on our bikes and were joined by our brother clubs Lagos Easy Riders and the Heart Riders of Port Harcourt.We also arrange private events for the club. We have been to Yankari a couple of times, Argungu Fishing Festival. We were invited by the governor to participate in it. We are organizing a bikers’ convention for this year hopefully like what we had in 2007 and 2008. It is an annual gathering of all Nigerian bikers in a central location. What is the essence of the convention and how are you able to raise money for the charity events that you are involved in?Adanan: Through the convention we get to know ourselves and see the faces behind our chat mates during the year and keep abreast of happenings in other clubs in the country.To go for our charity runs, we task ourselves. We make special donations towards each event. We contribute our own money towards these projects. That is why in addition to the basic N30,000 registration fee we also have additional expenses which crop up throughout the year. Sometimes we get sponsorship but other times we bear the costs. As an individual, what would you say are the gains of being a biker?Musa: It is a very social event and you are open to meet a lot of people who share your passion. As a proper biker who is eating, dreaming, sleeping and living his bike, it is a combination of many factors depending on how best you want to express yourself.Biking is expressing a lifestyle and in expressing our own lifestyle, I it is a gain. When we express ourselves through these charity rides and cultural events, it is gain for us. We are expressing ourselves and gaining in that expression. Where do you intend for 09 Bikers’
Club to be in another four five years; or when it is ten, what do you expect to have achieved as a club?Adanan: In Abuja, we would want to have a fully equipped secretariat with a workshop where people can come to service their bikes. This will also include a relaxation spot as well as a training centre for intending riders. Our intention is for it to have the whole package where people can come and identify with us, see and appreciate and buy and sell and have access to every facility that has to do with biking. Asides the charity tour and participation in the cultural events have you had your own tours?Musa: We have had our valentine’s day tour which took place in Yankari. We have been to Gurara Water Falls and every weekend we ride on Saturday and Sunday. So depending on the weather, we could decide to go to Jos, Kaduna, or any other destinations. Do you think that some day this would key into tourism as an event in itself?Musa: Yes, we do. It is tourism already in our opinion because we are invited to take part even at the Abuja Carnival and as we said earlier Argungun. What are the risks of being a biker?Musa: As a biker accidents come with the territory. There are a lot of risks, that is why we go all out to get full protective gear. To get a good helmet will cost no less than N50,000, an armoured jacket no less than N30,000, gloves go no less than N10,000, pants are not less than N30,000 and a pair of boots about N40,000. So when you cost all these together it comes to a lot in the end.When you begin to ride more, you start to appreciate the significance of the full protection gear. You are spending a lot not necessarily because you know you are going to crash but because you don’t know what you’ll meet on the road. So every time you see a biker in motion, he is always ready for the worst.Over the last four years, statistics in Nigeria and abroad (speaking for power bikes, not okadas) the fatality rate has drastically dropped to about 40 per cent from the 70 per cent that it used to be. The risk of falling is there but the biker always gets up. What is the excitement for you as a biker?Adanan: It differs from one individual to the next. There are people who ride because of the speed, some others for the looks which determine their selection of bikes. So you find some bikers buying the fastest bike and some others the most beautiful. (Laughter)You can’t express the joy you derive from being a biker. When you get on a bike you just see yourself smiling not being able to say the words out.People ask you, are you crazy why are you doing this? But you can’t explain that inner excitement you feel. People exclaim; “At what speed did you go past me!” When you are on the bike you don’t realize how fast you are riding. It is an experience you can’t express until you experience it yourself. You’ve been performing on the streets of Abuja and a lot of people come to watch you?Musa: Yes we do sometimes. We look for areas where it is less busy so we can express ourselves. Sometimes we are challenged by the crowd and traffic that gather there but I guess it is part of the satisfaction we derive. Being able to entertain and give residents something different than they are used to help them relax. At least show off our bikes and biking skills and pose to other bikers what we know how to do on an individual level. (Laughter) Biking is a novelty sport and some of our bikers are really good at it. We never invited anyone. It was just a few of us there and gradually the crowd began to grow and is still growing.