Opening Up

A Real Head-Turner

take a look at Sport Rider Inc.’s flashy, trend-setting Slingshot

V1 Staff, photos by Andrea Paulseth |

Image: Andrea Paulseth
Image: Andrea Paulseth

Scott Riley learned how to ride a dirt bike on Christmas Day, in the snow, when he was 5 years old. He got his first real motorcycle when he was 16, and took up track and road racing when street riding became too dangerous. “If it had a motor, I wanted to drive, ride, or race it,” says Riley, general manager of Sport Rider Inc. in Altoona. So when the Polaris Slingshot hit the scene on 2014, he was all over it.

Riley owns two of these three-wheeled, open cockpit “autocycles,” and he’s wild about them. Three wheels holds the weight of the vehicle and its passengers better than a traditional motorcycle, taking the stress off the driver. Slingshots are bigger, and therefore easier for other drivers to see on the road. The additional body is highly stylized with sharp angles and custom accessories; and now they can be driven in Wisconsin with a regular driver’s license instead of a motorcycle license.

“Wherever you go for the first year, you’ve got to take extra time,” Riley said with a chuckle. Even a stop at the fuel pump becomes a chance to show off the machine to amazed onlookers.

“The sensation of speed is unbelievable,” Riley continued. He compares the Slingshot to a sports car, but at a more affordable price point.

During a recent summer, Riley and his wife argued about whether to take their custom gray Slingshot – tricked out with the features Riley chose, including increased horsepower and upgraded suspension and brakes – out to Minnesota for a visit with friends. He talked her into it, and they were more than halfway there when they came face-to-face with a storm front that promised a wet ride.

They arranged for Riley’s wife to grab a ride with friends the rest of the way to the event. Riley chose instead to race the storm home. With only a few miles between the silver-gray Slingshot and the blue-gray fog and clouds hot on his tail, Riley turned around and shot back into Eau Claire; but simply beating the rain wasn’t enough. He pulled to the side of the road to snap a picture of his ride against the angry sky. The downpour began just as he rolled into the garage. He didn’t have nearly as much fun in his car on the trip into Minnesota.


1504 N. Hillcrest Pkwy, Altoona
(715) 834-0244

This post was produced through a partnership
with Sport Rider Inc. ... Learn more!