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BMX and mountain bike pioneer Gary Cook dies

Published April 1, 2013
Gary Cook

SANTA ANA, CA (BRAIN) — Gary Cook, co-founder along with Craig Cook of Cook Bros. Racing, has died at age 74.

The brothers were inducted into the BMX Hall of Fame and the Mountain Bike Hall Hall of Fame for their pioneering efforts in designing and manufacturing products that helped both sports develop and prosper from their earliest beginnings. 

Cook Bros. produced frames, headsets, hubs, bottom brackets, cranksets, seatposts and handlebars on the company's own CNC machines. Original Cook Bros. cruisers and mountain bikes are now coveted by collectors all over the world. 

Before launching Cook Bros. Racing in 1972, Gary worked as a fabricator for Carl Haas and Roger Penske on their Can Am and Indy Car projects. 

Gary Cook is survived by his wife, Kay; four children Kathryn, Lori, Bob and Jeff; four grandchildren; six great grandchildren; and his brother, Craig, who continues to run a successful machine shop serving the aerospace and golf industries.

Gary Cook was born in Los Angeles in 1938. After a stint in the Air Force he worked at Cervonics Instruments in quality control for several years.  From 1963 to 1964 he built dragsters with his brother Don, Jeff Jahns and Pete Hedges. Eventually his hobby building race cars led to a job working for Carl Haas and Roger Penski building Can Am and Indy Cars. 

In 1972, Gary and Craig began designing and manufacturing BMX and mountain bikes and Cook Bros. Racing was born.  

Cook Bros. was sold in 1984 and three years later Gary and his son Bob started manufacturing bicycle cranks, BMX bikes and mountain bikes under the name CQP.  Once again it was well received by the bicycle industry and he sold the company in 1993 to pursue retirement.

Donations can be made in Gary’s memory to lil’ Gary's Legacy. Donations can be made on line at or checks can be sent to:

Christian Resource Center
P.O. Box 80852
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688


Topics associated with this article: People

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