There’s something special about local businesses. The idea of going against behemoths in a quest to develop high quality products at competitive prices to make your business last is a noble pursuit, but recently a local company has closed their doors for good. Dirt Candy Graphics, after six years in business, has shut off their printing machines and laid the company to rest. Six years ago, Blake Davignon started Dirt Candy graphics with the simple idea of making unique graphics with cutting edge designs. This idea would stay attached to the company as they started to grow & expand.
I should preface this article by saying the company was terminated on good terms, this is no story of failure. Another important note to hold my journalistic integrity high is that this is simply an objective piece of writing. This article’s goal is not to subjectively define the past of Dirt Candy Graphics, but instead outline a story of a local business marching its way to the top ranks of the industry. At the local level, the graphics company had intimate relationships with several rippers: dudes like Connor Olson, Blake Curry, Trevor Whitmarsh and others were riders that Dirt Candy supported relentlessly. At the height of their local success, the Dirt Candy pit presence was as massive as one could imagine. For most, this success would’ve been enough: but Blake wanted “to get to the Factory level and work with the people that [he] had always looked up to.”
The next major move for Dirt Candy was when their focus shifted from local to national. Team Dirt Candy Graphics emerged to contend in the AMA National Series’ of Supercross and Motocross. Renowned veteran Bret Metcalfe would end up joining the team shortly after, bringing a spotlight to Dirt Candy Graphics they had never seen before. They would go on to have riders that included Matt Bisceglia and Australian racer Luke Clout. The team also grew to incorporate Japanese exhaust manufacturer Yoshimura adding to the prestige of the new team. The team reached a new height of performance when Matt Bisceglia snagged a podium finish in Toronto. The graphics company would also go on to be a sponsor of the JGR/Yamaha crew supporting the team and riders like Weston Peick and Justin Barcia. The team also went international with multiple teams in Canada and Europe crossing another major gap from national to international. The biggest impact from the experience though according to Blake, was the people he met in the industry. “All in all, (especially at the factory level) the sport can be pretty gnarly, we’ve all seen top athletes thrown to the sideline over an injury or top teams close down even with great athletes. In such a fast-paced, high consequence environment you develop a bond with people that is hard to develop any other way.” All this stemmed from the local Colorado company.
That is the important part of this article. It is a noble story of a local company growing to become known in the industry. Despite personal opinion of the products, the facts are this; the Dirt Candy story is a story of someone with a dream following his passion and making it, which is important for every local company or racer reading this. So if it was doing so well, then why did it end? “…I have chosen to go out on top…” Blake states in his Facebook post releasing the news of the company closing. Blake was offered a new career opportunity that would make the operations of Dirt Candy no longer possible. In reference to the past, Blake summarized it by saying “I loved the grass roots level of the sport and that’s what got me into it, but striving for factory teams is what kept me motivated. I believe we achieved that with several factory teams in Canada, Europe and the U.S.” In reference to the future, Blake stated “I’m ready for a change” and continued to say he’s leaving Dirt Candy with a heavy heart. “…I got to run a Supercross team with my dad, [that’s] something I will never forget and always will be thankful for.” Dirt Candy started out as a graphics company everyone knew about in Colorado and ended as a graphics company who was a significant part of the industry at large. And to that, Elevated Mx congratulates Dirt Candy Graphics on a successful and prominent run.