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The Horizon Hobby logo
The Horizon Hobby logo

Horizon Hobby, LLC. is an American international hobby product distributor, headquartered in Champaign, Illinois, United States.[1] It currently manufactures various hobby-grade radio-controlled (RC) models, as well as Athearn model trains and die-cast models, which it sells direct to consumers as well as to hobby retailers.[2]

History

In October 1985, Horizon Hobby was founded by Rick Stephens, an American entrepreneur.

On December 9, 2013, Horizon announced that the company was being bought by a group of investors led by Horizon's CEO, Joe Ambrose. The group includes Minneapolis-based Mill City Capital L.P. and Champaign-based Armory Capital LLC founded by Jacob Ambrose.[3]

Horizon Hobby entered an agreement to purchase its competitor, Hobbico, in April of 2018.[4]

Before being purchased by Horizon Hobby, the Losi remote-controlled car division had been a separate company founded by Gil Losi with the release of the JRX2 in 1988.[5]

On February 7, 2020 Horizon Hobby posted a video to YouTube.com talking about the new proposed FAA regulations on Remote ID.[6]

Losi - RC Cars

Team Losi Racing often referred to as TLR has been designing innovative radio-controlled cars and accessories for 40 years primarily as high end competition products. The brand date dates back to the early 1980s with roots in Southern California. In 2000, Losi become part of the Horizon Hobby family. The company was founded by Gil Losi Snr and Gil Losi Jr. who won the first IFMAR 1:10 Electric Off-Road World Championships held in 1985. The car he raced was a highly modified Yokomo - YZ-834B.

History of Losi

Team Losi's first vehicle, the JRX2, was a 1/10 Scale 2wd Off-Road racing buggy. When it was released to the public in 1988, the JRx-2 featured many innovations that were unheard of at the time, from its unique 5-link rear suspension arms, carbon-graphite chassis, and all-natural rubber racing tires, the JRX2 set the stage for technological advancement and innovation. Team Losi, along with Team Associated, have helped shape the R/C industry into what it is today. The JRx-T was the first "purpose built" electric stadium trucks that didn't require racers to modify an existing buggy. The JRx-Pro SE was the first competition buggy to come standard with a molded composite chassis in an era where stamped aluminum and graphite plates were the standard. The Street Weapon was not only Team Losi's first on-road Sedan, but also the first IFMAR IWC Touring Car Championship Chassis. Team Losi early success in the 1/10-scale offroad electric category winning multiple world championship.[7]

In the late 1990s, Ernie Provetti's company (Trinity) bought a 50% stake in Losi. Most (if not all) Losi Factory Drivers were using Trinity motors or batteries at the time. However, the partnership lasted only a few months before the two companies split. Gil Losi Sr. of Team Losi sold the Team Losi brand to Horizon Hobby in 2001. Losi continues to operate in Southern California alongside Horizon Hobby.

Other, unusual items produced or endorsed by Losi include the PlayStation video game "Team Losi: R/C Racer" and a Team Losi line of high-performance yo-yos designed by Steve Brown. These were the 'Cherry Bomb', 'Da Bomb' and the 'Grim Sleeper', both using Losi race-specification ball bearings.

In March 2007, Gil Losi, Jr., co-founder of Losi, left Losi for Kyosho America.

World Championship Titles

Year Class Driver Car Host Club Venue Location Surface Source Report
1997 2WD 1:10 Elec Offroad Buggy United States Brian Kinwald Losi XX-CR Ranch Pit Shop Ranch Pit Shop Pomona, California  United States Dirt [8] Report
1999 4WD 1:10 Elec Offroad Buggy Finland Jukka Steenari Losi XX-4 Rauman Urheiluautoilijat Uimahalli Rauma  Finland [9] Report
2002 2WD 1:10 Elec Offroad Buggy United States Matt Francis Losi XXX Tshwane Raceway And Promotions Skilpad Tortoise Hall Pretoria  South Africa Dirt [nb 1][10] Report
2002 4WD 1:10 Elec Offroad Buggy Finland Jukka Steenari Losi XX-4 Tshwane Raceway And Promotions Skilpad Tortoise Hall Pretoria  South Africa [nb 1][11] Report
2003 4WD 1:10 Elec Offroad Buggy United States Ryan Cavalieri Losi Minnreg RC Car Club Minnreg RC Speedway Largo, Florida  United States [12] Report

Team Losi Racing Line-Up

This includes current ONLY TLR vehicles.

Notes

  1. ^ a b Because of the September 11 attacks which occurred prior to the championships, the event was delayed until 2002.

References

  1. ^ [1][dead link]
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-06-19. Retrieved 2008-12-04.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "Horizon Hobby being sold to investors". News-Gazette.com. Retrieved 2015-11-04.
  4. ^ Zigterman, Ben. "Bankruptcy judge OKs Horizon's purchase of Hobbico's RC business". The News-Gazette. Retrieved 2020-07-29.
  5. ^ "Vintage Losi". Retrieved 20 January 2016.
  6. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=baw6viYhx8k
  7. ^ http://vintagelosi.com/History.html
  8. ^ Howell, John (December 1997). "1997 IFMAR Off-Road Worlds". Radio Control Car Action. Air Age Media.
  9. ^ "IFMAR Off-Road Worlds" (PDF). R/C Car. November 1999. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-02-05.
  10. ^ Lionel Troyon / adaptaweb. "RC Infos ¦ Site informatif sur le modélisme". rcinfos.com. Retrieved 26 November 2015.
  11. ^ Lionel Troyon / adaptaweb. "RC Infos ¦ Site informatif sur le modélisme". rcinfos.com. Retrieved 26 November 2015.
  12. ^ Lionel Troyon / adaptaweb. "RC Infos ¦ Site informatif sur le modélisme". rcinfos.com. Retrieved 26 November 2015.