Professional motorcycle racer and apparel designer Cory Texter knows what it’s like to defy all odds.
After the Spring-Ford Area High School graduate’s father passed away two years ago, Texter designed a simple T-shirt to memorialize his father. It bore the phrase “Defy All Odds,” to his father’s uncanny ability to remain positive in light of multiple health problems, including Hodgkin’s lymphoma, multiple racing injuries and heart disease.
But the small idea behind the Defy All Odds Apparel Company blossomed in ways that Texter never imagined.
“I thought it would be a fun hobby in memory of my dad, just something me and my buddies would wear when we were racing, but it became a full-time job,” said Texter, who now lives in Willow Street, Pa.
Other riders began asking Texter about the T-shirt and the idea for the clothing line took off from there.
Since the company’s humble beginnings just five months ago, Defy All Odds Apparel has grown from a single T-shirt design to a clothing line that includes more than 30 styles. It also includes accessories like hats and lanyards, all boasting the line’s motto.
“We get 2,000 to 4,000 hits on the website ( DAOapparel.com ) daily. And we’ve sold to something like 37 states,” Texter said. “I’ll see people I don’t even know walking around the mall wearing my clothes and that’s really cool.”
After graduating from Spring-Ford in 2005, Texter, now 24, joined his sister Shayna in the professional racing world. Shayna Texter is defying the odds herself as a top racing female rider in the country and the only female to ever win an AMA Grand National Championship.
“Sometimes there will be 60, 70 riders in a race and she’ll be the only girl,” Texter said.
And Texter, who has also made a name for himself in the racing world, having been broadcast on Speed Channel, MavTV and NBC Sports among others, admits that this familial fame may have contributed to the clothing line’s rapid success.
“My ability to market myself in racing definitely helped,” Texter said. “But this isn’t just a way for me to make money — it’s something I really, really, really truly believe in.”
He believes that while the younger crowd can relate to the style and fashion of the line, the older demographic relates to its “never give up” message. Texter feels that the message behind Defy All Odds is what gives it life, unlike larger sports clothing lines that just pump out overpriced apparel.
“We’re all defying odds, whether it’s just getting up in the morning or dealing with your parent’s divorce, anything,” Texter said. “I want the clothing line to really be an inspiration that anything is possible with the right attitude.”
Some retail stores in the area are already carrying the clothing line and Texter hopes to extend into larger, more mainstream stores like Pac Sun and Zumiez within the next two years.
But if you’re looking to get your hands on some Defy All Odds merchandise today, you had better act fast.
“We just got our clothes into the stores three weeks ago and they’re already sold out,” said Texter.
But no matter how big the business gets, Texter is adamant about staying true to the original message.
“When our dad passed away we kept going. My dad defied a lot of odds but I like to think we did too, by continuing to race after he died,” he said.
To learn more about Defy All Odds Apparel visit DAOapparel.com.