Josh Hayes won the AMA Superbike championship this year, Danny Eslick won the Daytona Sportbike championship, and Ryan Villopoto won both the AMA Motocross and AMA Supercross championships this year. But none of the AMA champions had more impact on the motorcycling world than motorcycle activist Nancy Sabeter.
Sabeter was just awarded the AMA Motorcyclist of the year award. So who is Sabeter and why does she deserve the award? Sabeter was at the front of the grass roots organization that took down the motorcycle led law.
The led law would have banned the production of children’s motorcycles and ATVs. Sabeter’, along with several other organizations, convinced the US government to exempt motorcycles from the led law.
“A number of partners had a hand in our victory over this misguided law — the motorcycle industry, race promoters, parts distributors and others,” said AMA President and CEO Rob Dingman. “But it’s Nancy and those like her — the individual enthusiasts — who truly put the rubber to the road, gave our cause a face in the crowd and brought this victory home. They were the most influential motorcyclists of 2011, and AMA member and grassroots activist Nancy Sabater is the AMA Motorcyclist of the Year for her stellar work on behalf of families and kids.”
The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act, which was passed by congress in 2009, was created to safeguard children from harmful imported products. The language of the bill banned any product aimed at children under the age of twelve that had more than a trace amount of led. This meant that dirt bikes and ATVs would be banned for kids.
“This victory is something that demonstrates the fruits of our labors,” Sabater said. “Something really happened here. We effected change. We showed these kids that if you want something hard enough and you work hard enough, that you can get results. Who knows what battles we’ll fight next, in D.C., for the AMA, for the rights of motorcyclists? This was a victory on many levels.”