In the 1940's, a boot maker named Israel Kroop was asked by a customer named James McCoy (aka Goggles McCoy) to develop a goggle for him to use in horse racing. Being a highly creative craftsman Kroop designed a cutting edge goggle that was slim, light and offered outstanding peripheral vision. More importantly the design allowed the goggles to be stacked so that one by one they could be removed as mud accumulated during a race. This simple but effective design element changed the sport of horse racing forever. Kroop's original design has proven so effective and timeless it is still worn today by nearly every jockey in the world. The Kroop's brand of goggles is still the gold standard in the horse racing industry and maintains an incredible 75% market share.
A decade after Kroop invented his first goggle, Parachuting (Skydiving) became a sport. As it turns out Kroop's invention was well suited for protecting the eyes of jumpers at the high speeds of free fall. Parachutists quickly adopted the goggle for themselves nicknaming it the Boogie Goggle. Kroop is widely credited as the inventor of the first skydiving goggle. Today Kroop's design is still the most widely used in the world.
Although Israel Kroop died in 1991, his company and designs live on. Many of the same machines originally adapted by Kroop to manufacture his first goggles are still in use today in our factory in North Carolina. Although the company has expanded well beyond horse racing and skydiving it still considers the two sports its primary and most valuable markets.