Motocrossers that started BIG non-moto companies...Felt, Oakley, Arnette...Who else?

Dirt.Squirt
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1/23/2023 3:54pm

Idk if he founded the company but the ceo of Enron was into moto 

The Shop

tmx860
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1/23/2023 5:46pm

Mike Grondahl and Planet Fitness 

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1911
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1/23/2023 6:49pm

Preston Petty?

IWreckALot
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1/24/2023 9:57am
GrapeApe wrote:

Forslyk

4Arm Strong

Don't forget about Bulldog Racing. Think they're a clothing company right? Or are the a moto company?

Profile picture for user Bulldog Racing

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Aj528
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1/24/2023 7:15pm

Shortly after getting the A class in 2013 I hung up my boots, went to college, and took the with age come cage approach and started racing sprint cars and midgets. In 2015 long time friend and sponsor Eddie Cole contacted me about possibly doing a race car neck brace with Atlas and wanted to get our opinion since I’d been in a car for a few years. They ended up not pursuing the racecar brace, but my father and I wanted to keep going with it. So we spent the last 6 years developing an auto racing neck brace with a shock absorber built in. The valving inside the shock is based on Supercross Christmas tree valving. We have made massive improvement in concussion prevention without giving up any neck safety. We finally got it ready for launch last year, raised the capital from investors, and debuted last December at the PRI show in Indy. We passed SFI crash testing last week and will start shipping braces March 1st. We already have several high profile Indycar, NASCAR, and IMSA guys ready to use braces. The best of all is that the guy who got the ball rolling and thinking about a brace, Eddie Cole, is one of our advisors and we work with him everyday virtually and he was at our launch in Indy in December. 
 

meru-safety.com

CEMX182
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1/24/2023 7:54pm
TeamGreen wrote:

Troy Lee…his really BIG $$$ seem to come form MTB…so, that’s Non-Moto…right?

TLD also paints / has painted numerous CFB Helmets, including a couple sick specialty editions for Notre Dame! haha

1
1/24/2023 9:59pm
TeamGreen wrote:

Horst Leitner has had plenty of companies and some very profitable patents…like those powered steps on your Ford F-150-450. 

N-Fab, too. And Tom was a moto guy and cashed out big time

PNWMXer
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1/25/2023 4:57am

The Hurricane’s aviation business has done well…not “big” by the standards of some of the others mentioned, but successful.

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bigmaico
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1/25/2023 7:33am

Brent Foes was a So,California MX Pro.

He started Foes Mountain bikes, Don’t know if he still owns it.

 

1/25/2023 8:38am
bigmaico wrote:

Brent Foes was a So,California MX Pro.

He started Foes Mountain bikes, Don’t know if he still owns it.

 

He said “BIG” companies.

2
1/25/2023 8:41am
TeamGreen wrote:

Troy Lee…his really BIG $$$ seem to come form MTB…so, that’s Non-Moto…right?

I’d argue that Troy was a mountain biker AND motocrosser in his founding days and always an artist…the dude has been riding mountain bikes before it was a thing and into this day he rides more MTB than Moto….but my god does he love moto, I’d say it’s his true love.

And yes, TLD Bicycle business is larger than the moto business-in which both continue to grow.

Source: I worked for Troy and ran the bicycle division from 2011-2022

 

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xmlativ69
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1/25/2023 9:05am

K&N Air filter. They also had a Yamaha dealerships.

1/25/2023 9:58am

I'd say it would be a travesty not to put Travis Pastrana on this list.  He still has lots of ties with motocross, but his varied career has included plenty of disparate activities and he seems to have a knack for making all of them generate cash.  he's certainly one of the most (if not THE most) recognizable ex-MXr's on the planet...

2
1/25/2023 10:16am

I think a bigger story that may grow out of the idea for this thread is how motocross either attracts people with strong individual entrepreneurial spirits, or adds something like that to them as they participate in the sport.  As an old guy, I know a long list of people who love MX (or used to) who have translated that enthusiasm into success in the business world.  We may not recognize their names, but the level of success many have enjoyed easily makes many of them one percenters.  Sometimes the drive to win - to succeed - crosses from one discipline to others.  Success in one area breeds success in others.  For example, I know of one ex-national champion who took almost every cent he made as a professional racer and plowed it into real estate.  His company now owns over 70 buildings and his business is flourishing.  On the one hand, he could not have done that without success in MX;  on the other, he translated that success in MX into success in business and expanded his world from there.

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Snoqualmie
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1/25/2023 11:22am
I think a bigger story that may grow out of the idea for this thread is how motocross either attracts people with strong individual entrepreneurial spirits...

I think a bigger story that may grow out of the idea for this thread is how motocross either attracts people with strong individual entrepreneurial spirits, or adds something like that to them as they participate in the sport.  As an old guy, I know a long list of people who love MX (or used to) who have translated that enthusiasm into success in the business world.  We may not recognize their names, but the level of success many have enjoyed easily makes many of them one percenters.  Sometimes the drive to win - to succeed - crosses from one discipline to others.  Success in one area breeds success in others.  For example, I know of one ex-national champion who took almost every cent he made as a professional racer and plowed it into real estate.  His company now owns over 70 buildings and his business is flourishing.  On the one hand, he could not have done that without success in MX;  on the other, he translated that success in MX into success in business and expanded his world from there.

^^^ This....

I think a bigger story that may grow out of the idea for this thread is how motocross either attracts people with strong individual entrepreneurial spirits, or adds something like that to them as they participate in the sport.  As an old guy, I know a long list of people who love MX (or used to) who have translated that enthusiasm into success in the business world.

WeaverMX
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1/25/2023 11:52am

You have Rich Taylor with X Brand that sells into the off-road market not just Moto..
You have Scot Steffy with VIral Brand they sell worldwide Sunglasses and Goggles into other markets than moto??

 

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maicocd
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1/25/2023 12:04pm

Another MX-er to Bicycle guy would be Keith Bontrager. He was very successful in the mountain bike industry on his own before hooking up with Trek Bicycles of which many of their bikes are equipped extensively with Bontrager components and accessories. As I understand it- Trek purchased his company some time back.

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Jake_CR250R
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1/25/2023 12:44pm
I'd say it would be a travesty not to put Travis Pastrana on this list.  He still has lots of ties with motocross, but his varied...

I'd say it would be a travesty not to put Travis Pastrana on this list.  He still has lots of ties with motocross, but his varied career has included plenty of disparate activities and he seems to have a knack for making all of them generate cash.  he's certainly one of the most (if not THE most) recognizable ex-MXr's on the planet...

A lot of great brands have been mentioned and I came in here to chime in on this. I believe he’s a co-founder of Ethika which has a reach from skateboard, moto, basketball and anywhere in between. 

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-MAVERICK-
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1/25/2023 12:58pm

Brian Deegan & Larry Linkogle with Metal Mulisha. 

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PTshox
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1/25/2023 10:14pm
maicocd wrote:
Another MX-er to Bicycle guy would be Keith Bontrager. He was very successful in the mountain bike industry on his own before hooking up with Trek...

Another MX-er to Bicycle guy would be Keith Bontrager. He was very successful in the mountain bike industry on his own before hooking up with Trek Bicycles of which many of their bikes are equipped extensively with Bontrager components and accessories. As I understand it- Trek purchased his company some time back.

Keith was producing a lot of components for Trek... and the orders got bigger and bigger... till Trek just offered to buy it. BTW Keith was a very good 2 stroke engine porter back in the early 70's... Paul Turner had his engine building shop next to Keith's bike biz after he stopped working as a Honda Mechanic. That's where the rockshox idea was born. 

Tom Morris was very into moto. He started building his own suspension bicycles and they were seen by Mike Marquez.. that turned into Santa Cruz Bicycles... You can read a little about it here..https://clicksuspension.com

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PTshox
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1/25/2023 10:16pm
TeamGreen wrote:

Rockshox

NSP139 wrote:

He was one of the original guys at Factory Connection before Ziggy bought him out!

You're thinking about Mike McAndrews who worked for Jeff Ward @ KAW. Mike went to work for Paul Turner at Rockshox when it was growing super fast. They grew up together. That is when Mike sold Factory Connection as I understand it. 

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UpTiTe
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1/26/2023 11:30am
TeamGreen wrote:

Troy Lee…his really BIG $$$ seem to come form MTB…so, that’s Non-Moto…right?

I’d argue that Troy was a mountain biker AND motocrosser in his founding days and always an artist…the dude has been riding mountain bikes before it...

I’d argue that Troy was a mountain biker AND motocrosser in his founding days and always an artist…the dude has been riding mountain bikes before it was a thing and into this day he rides more MTB than Moto….but my god does he love moto, I’d say it’s his true love.

And yes, TLD Bicycle business is larger than the moto business-in which both continue to grow.

Source: I worked for Troy and ran the bicycle division from 2011-2022

 

He sponsored me with gear and a helmet when I raced some of the down hill nationals in 91-92. 

ACBraap
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1/26/2023 12:43pm
maicocd wrote:
Another MX-er to Bicycle guy would be Keith Bontrager. He was very successful in the mountain bike industry on his own before hooking up with Trek...

Another MX-er to Bicycle guy would be Keith Bontrager. He was very successful in the mountain bike industry on his own before hooking up with Trek Bicycles of which many of their bikes are equipped extensively with Bontrager components and accessories. As I understand it- Trek purchased his company some time back.

It was probably 20 years ago or more when Trek bought Bontrager.  He built steel frames that were way ahead of their time.  Trek killed them off after a couple years, and has had Bontrager component lines ever since.  Bontrager mtb tires are some of my favorites.

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