Malcolm Smith defies U.S.A.


Smith and lead-ban victims

KTM North America has praised the actions of one of motorcycling’s best-known personalities in fighting a recent U.S. ban on the sale of small motorcycles and ATVs for children.

The letter thanked California motorcycle dealer Malcolm Smith for selling two KTM dirt bikes and a small ATV in a public demonstration of rebellion against the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act’s ban on the sale of these items because they contain lead.

Smith sold the bikes and ATV on March 19 to three friends, Jeff Ward, an AMA national champin, Troy Lee, who owns Troy Lee Designs, and Bud Feldkamp, who owns Glen Helen Raceway in San Bernardino.

Smith launched a "Kids Love 2 Ride Protest" after having to tell a customer that he could not sell her a small dirt bike. He said he’s lost about $5,000 in profits since the ban went into effect across the U.S.A. on February 10.

"On behalf of KTM North America I am extending our deepest gratitude to Malcolm and his staff for their proactive approach to the CPSIA issue. The more people involved and attention generated on this issue will ensure a timely resolution to the matter at hand," said KTM president Jon-Erik Burleson in a KTM North America press release.

Malcolm Smith first became famous as one of the stars of the classic motorcycle film On Any Sunday. He has won the Baja 1000 half a dozen times, has ridden the Paris-Dakar rally twice, and was inducted into both the Motorsports Hall of Fame and the Motorcycle Hall of Fame in the 1990s. He is 68 and runs a Riverside, California, multiline dealership.

Husqvarna has also expressed support for Malcom Smith’s actions.

He could be hit with fines of several hundred thousand dollars for his actions, and jail time.

And in a dismal sidenote, Feldkamp is reported to have lost several members of his family last Friday, the day after the Malcolm Smith protest, when an aircraft crashed in Montana, killing all 14 aboard. The raceway owner was reportedly driving to meet the airplane when he was notified by telephone of the disaster.

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