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Specialized was founded in 1974 by Mike Sinyard, a cycling enthusiast who had sold his Volkswagen Bus for $1,500 to fund a cycle tour of Europe where he bought handlebars and stems made by Campagnolo and Cinelli to take back to the US. Sinyard started out importing Italian bike components that were difficult to find in the United States, but the company began to produce its own bike parts by 1976, starting with the Specialized Touring Tire. Specialized introduced the first major production mountain bike in the world, the Stumpjumper, in 1981.
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