Every time we are out on the road and stop at a show or a bike night, we can count on finding at least one bike that stands out. We came across this bike a bit different, but along the same lines. We headed out to a show last year and found a few bikes we liked, and made arrangements to photograph them to showcase in the magazine. Well Robert Cordova's (aka "Pumpkin") '07 Road King was not the bike we saw at the show, but his good friend, David Lopez, owned the bike we found. As it turns out, the whole time we were shooting David's bike, he kept saying that if we liked his bike, we really needed to see his buddy Rob's Road King. "It's the shit," were his exact words. At the end of the photoshoot, David's wife showed us photos from her laptop and told us all the details about the bike, as if she was the one who worked on it. We knew the bike must be real cool. Every photo gave us a look at a real clean, mint-green custom Road King, and it turned out to be everything she said it was.
As far back as Pumpkin could remember, him and his baby brother, Steven (aka "Big Worm"), went to car shows with their dad. Their family has always been real tight. They were taught to give respect and earn respect, so even as youngsters they developed the greatest respect and appreciation for nice cars and motorcycles.
When his dad would enter cars in a show, Pumpkin always felt like it was their ride, not just his dad's. They would do all the things that dad did, like walk around the ride with a dust rag polishing out any smudges or fingerprints that people left from touching it. When dad won at a show, they all won.
Car shows were a big part of their young lives. They were huge events to look forward to, and a family pastime. Over the years, Pumpkin maintained that same respect and appreciation of rides, and he and Big Worm both have had the nicest, cleanest rides ever since. By ages 29 and 26 respectively, Pumpkin and his brother were lucky enough to have owned at least 25 cars and built a few ground-up customs.
In April 2007, Pumpkin's brother called and told him that he was at Mathews Harley-Davidson in Fresno, California; he said he was buying himself a Harley. Pumpkin knew he needed to get down there and get a bike too. They both ended up buying '07 Road Kings that morning: Big Worm's was white and blue, and Pumpkin's was black on black. Neither could wait to start customizing his bike, and the race began to build a cooler bike than the other. Big Worm took his bike to Raymond Morin of Ray's Motor Cycle Town of Fresno, and that was where it all started. By summer, he had more than $8,000 in accessories on his bike, chrome parts, more chrome, pinstriping, and a 21-inch 40-spoke twisted spoke wheel that he bought form good friend Alex Alejandrez. Big Worm was on the road to making his bike the next show-stopper.
However, on September 22, 2007, Big Worm tragically passed away. It was by far the worst time of Pumpkin's life. They had done everything together their whole lives. They always rode together; Big Worm was Pumpkin's right-hand man. Pumpkin had a lot to deal with emotionally and financially. While he was buried in the pain of losing his brother, he really needed something to focus on to help get through the hard time. Pumpkin had two bikes to pay for, so he made the decision to keep his brother's bike; he just couldn't imagine getting rid of his brother's ride.