How did High Lifter Mud National events get started?
Mud Nationals and Racing
In 2003, High Lifter Products, based in Shreveport, Louisiana, wanted to get some friends, customers, and ATV enthusiasts together for a weekend of fun, while showcasing products and sharing ideas, and as a result High Lifter Mud Nationals was born. Now this once a year event has become the largest Utility ATV event in the world, where ATV enthusiasts and riders from across the US and Canada come together for a four day-long extravaganza of mudding fun and racing action. Mud loving fans will travel to watch Mudda Cross racing, Bad2DaBone Competitions, ATV/UTV Short Course Racing, Live Concerts, plus have the chance to win big prizes and cash payouts.
Now as more and more serious racing teams form, attracting national media attention and major industry sponsors, ATV mud racing has become a highly competitive sporting and racing industry. Professional ATV racing, that will attract thousands more spectators and competitors from across the nation, had been set into motion. The ATV industry has evolved and High Lifter is proud to have been a pioneer at the forefront of ATV/UTV Racing.
Each year, more than 100 vendors from the industry including OEMs are present featuring the latest products and sharing valuable knowledge with the strong customer base that attend these events. Riders and media come from all over the United States, Canada, and from other countries including Sweden and Japan!
Read more about High Lifter’s history below…
Who We Are
High Lifter Products, Inc. has been developing and marketing unique, after-market accessories for utility, 4-wheel drive ATVs, UTVs, and RUVs since 1996. In this short time, the company has grown from a one-man, backyard hobby into a 65 employee, multi-million dollar corporation.
Business operations are carried out at our 52,000 square foot location in Shreveport, Louisiana. This building includes a retail showroom, a manufacturing and fabrication facility, a performance shop, executive offices, and is surrounded by 3 large warehouses. We also operate through our main website, www.highlifter.com, which is visited by millions of unique visitors each year, and includes a full product catalog, forum, and more information about our industry.
How it all Began – The First ATV Lift Kit
Scott’s father, Mike Smith, was the mastermind behind High Lifter’s first product – the lift kit. Mike had seen homemade lifts for ATVs, and wanted one. Because Scott was more “construction minded” (he was already co-owner of a local construction company), Mike asked him to make one for his 1996 Honda 400 Foreman so he could run larger tires and achieve more ground clearance. Scott and Mike soon realized that this was both a great and badly needed product, but also realized that it could never be sold and marketed in its current configuration as a weld-on accessory. Over the next few months, work began on developing the bolt-on lift kit. In the early days, there was plenty of outside help to get this project going. “We designed dozens of bolt-on kits before arriving at the finished product, a front lift for a Honda 400,” says Mike.
Since Mike had a full time job working for Caddo Parish, he realized that his “real” job did not allow the flexibility to pursue completing the lift and then marketing it. Rather than see this much needed accessory go by the way side, Scott and Mike both decided that Scott would take over and make the High Lifter lift kit a reality.Once the front lift for the Honda 400 was completed, Scott began to run test ads in the local Thrifty Nickel. This generated enough interest in the lift that more ads were run in Thrifty Nickels in 10 other southern cities. Within a few months, High Lifter was spending more on Thrifty Nickel ads than the first Dirt Wheels ad cost and was not getting near as much exposure.
Scott knew he needed a “shop” to work out of. He borrowed money to buy basic equipment and built a small workshop behind his house. Scott spent his nights after work building and selling the kits. “All inventory was kept in a small plastic dish-sized tub,” jokes Scott. The next order of business would be a name. Again, Mike came through. “The name High Lifter was selected as being reasonably indicative of what the product is – a lift that makes ATVs higher,” says Mike. And the journey began to become the leading ATV/UTV aftermarket provider in the US.