HILLSDALE, Mich. – Historically, Cobra’s motocross battles were waged on the nation’s greatest amateur tracks, places like Texas’ Oak Hill and Lake Whitney, Oklahoma’s Ponca City, Loretta Lynn’s Ranch in Tennessee and Florida’s great Gatorback MX Park, home of the Mini O’s. And since the company’s inception in 1993, the lion’s share of 50cc championships up for grabs on these hallowed MX proving grounds were won on Cobras by the future stars of motocross and supercross, aka the “Cobra Generation.”
This past year would be no different on the championship front as Cobra pretty much swept all the major 50cc class titles available. But that was only part of the battle for the Michigan-based company as the government, namely the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), did all but ban the sale of Cobras – and mini cycles and quads in general - through its new lead law imitative.
And while the downturned economy as well had a decided effect on racer turnout at the eight major amateur MX national events, Cobra racers persisted and, in many cases, represented as well as previous years in hundreds of regional races run coast-to-coast every weekend.
Through it all Cobra’s front office and President Sean Hilbert managed to keep not only Cobra on the rails, but also gets a tip-of-the-hat in helping keep the entire junior MX cycle industry afloat, primarily through Cobra’s, the AMA’s and MX Sports’ efforts in winning a temporary stay of enforcement on the CPSIA’s lead law.
“One of Cobra’s biggest victories this year was actually won in a suit and tie,” said Hilbert, half laughing. “We literally competed not only on motocross tracks across the country, but against our own government over the results of a law that would have, for all intents and purposes, ended junior MX racing as we know it today.”
Hilbert added that when - at times - the battle seemed lost and he felt like banging his head against the wall, all he had to do was to pack up and head to a race and spend time with the people most responsible for where industry-leading Cobra is today – the company’s racers and families. “Puts things in perspective to see families suffering the same economic hardships as Cobra is, sacrificing and pulling things together just to make the races,” said Hilbert. “The tough times stories around the campfire at night would all be forgotten when we went racing the next morning.”
The bottom line for Cobra, as it is with any competition motorcycle company, were the headlines. And there were plenty to be pumped about for Cobra in ’09. Here’s a few of the more impressive ones ...
Cobra Racers Clean Up @ Lake Whitney, Ready To Gate For Oak Hill MX National
Lewis, Lietzel, Robertson and Forkner lead Cobra in some Texas-sized dirt bike battles to open the ‘09 amateur MX national season
Cobra Kids Continue Their Summer-Long Roll, Sweep Vegas Mini GPs W/ Titles
Stilez Robertson continues his perfect season by sweeping the PW Stock & Modified through six classes
Cobras sweep everything at Ponca City, next up: AMA Amateur MX Nationals at Loretta Lynn’s!
Jordan Bailey and Stilez Robertson lead the complete Cobra sweep of the PW 4-6 and 7-8 Stock and Modified classes at Ponca City
Cobra-mounted racers enjoy another successful showing at AMA Amateur MX Nationals
Jordan Bailey and Stilez Robertson lead the complete Cobra sweep of the AMA 4-6 and 7-8 Stock 1 and 2 classes at Loretta Lynn’s Ranch
Cobra mini quad racers dominate ATVA National Championships @ Loretta Lynn’s Ranch!
Cobra’s Corey Heath, Alex Symborski, Bret Musick and Chase Horton all win 12-round overall ATVA production class national series titles
Cobra’s Bailey & Keith sweep the 50cc Senior, Junior class titles at the Gatorback Mini Os!
Florida’s Bailey closed out his impressive race career on Cobras by sweeping the SX and MX classes; Maryland’s Keith is the fastest little guy
“Through it all a year like 2009 made Cobra a much stronger, much more efficient company,” said Hilbert. “We know what to expect in the foreseeable future and look forward to again meeting the challenges both on and off the track. Enjoy the last weekend of the holidays here, buckle down in school and we’ll look forward to getting our racers up and running on the new 2010 line of competition Cobra mini cycles and mini quads here in the coming months.”
Cobra, founded in 1993, produces the most successful line of competition mini cycles and mini quads in the United States with more than 200 national titles in the last decade. Based out of Hillsdale, Mich., Cobra's mission is to build premium products for the serious racer. For more information on Cobra products, please visit our website at www.cobramotorcycle.com.
High Profile Public Relations (HPPR), LLC, is a multi-faceted communications agency specializing in strategic media relations – both industry and mainstream – for the powersports and action sports communities. Dialed in with all forms of power and action sports, its participants, manufacturers and live event promoters, HPPR’s Pat Schutte can be reached at (734) 369-2170 and email@example.com.