Lusk Steps Out Of The Shadows For A Moment
At Suzuki’s recent RM-Z250 intro, a number of former yellow racers were on hand to support the brand. We saw Mark Barnett, Travis Pastrana, Damon Huffman and-believe it or not-Ezra Lusk! Since retiring a few years ago, Yogi has been all but invisible to the motorcycling community. We had a few words with Lusk to see how life without motorcycles has been treating him.Ezra, We Haven’t Seen You In Ages. What Have You Been Up To?
Basically, man, just raising a family. I have been playing a lot of tennis lately, too. I did that when I was younger, but I obviously didn’t have much of a chance with it because of the racing, since I was at that for about 13 years. Other than tennis, though, I haven’t been doing much of anything. We are getting ready to build a new house, and I have just been enjoying being a dad and being normal.Your younger brother, Shane, was injured pretty badly a while back. How’s he doing?He’s great; he is really lucky. He spent a lot of time in rehab. He got kickstarted on his therapy, and now he can walk on his own with a crutch, though he gets a little tired. Now he is in his second year at Florida State University, and he is a really hard worker. He’s impressive.Are You Still Connected To The Industry?I really haven’t been keeping track of the racing. When I arrived at the intro today, I had to ask the people at Suzuki who is leading the Nationals! The races came down to the wire in the 125s, but I didn’t know. It is really cool to see young guys, the 16-year-olds, in the 125 class, because that is the way it should be. I followed the battle between RC, Bubba and Reed a bit, but not too much. I’ve been busy doing my own thing. That part of my life has passed me by; I follow tennis tournaments now!Do You Have A Bike Still?
Yeah, Brock Sellards comes over every winter, and we train with Davi Millsaps. We ride a little then Brock leaves, and I’m ready to take another 10-month break. I have other things on my plate that I enjoy doing, and riding just takes a back seat.It sounds like you are pretty happy with your life now. Tell us about your kid.He is three months old. We’re going to talk about having another one after we get settled in our new house. I like being a dad. It’s a different experience, for sure! Having a kid goes above and beyond what I expected of it. If you aren’t an adult, you sure are after that happensLetter Rip!
As the official Letter Rip dude, I have one humble request. Will you all please stop sending us e-mails written in uppercase letters? On top of being a bear to transcribe, caps are typically used to signify yelling in the virtual world. Every time you are writing with the caps lock on, you are essentially yelling at me. I don’t barge into your work and start shouting and screaming at you, now do I? (Unless you are the moron at Northwest Airlines who lost my gear bag last month.) So please, hold off on the uppercase, quit yelling so much, and let’s all make the world a better place. Oh yeah, one more thing: LETTER RIP!Send mail to email@example.com or Dirt Rider Magazine, Attn.: Letter Rip!, 6420 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048. All letters may be edited at our discretion. Unless the planets align just right in the near future, we will still be too busy to respond to every letter. But you can bet your best pair of socks that we will read each and every one.We Hate It When That HappensMy CRF230 has been running great. I have changed the oil and cleaned the air filter, and I have done all the right check-ups on it. But I rode through water a couple of weeks ago to get to my track, and after I got through, I couldn’t get any power. I shifted from first to second, then kept on it all the way to fifth. I gave up because it didn’t go above 7 mph and I didn’t want to hurt it. I waited four days, then checked it again. It had the same problem, but now it was only in third and up. I checked it today, two weeks later, and now it happens fourth and up. I have no idea what the problem is or how to fix it. Can you please give me something to work with?-Charlie SpencerIt sounds like you have water in the airbox. Check to see if the drain-out hole is plugged. Water most likely got in the carb, so clean that, especially the float bowl and the air passages in the rear bell area. Use a good spray carb cleaner to force the condensation out of these passages. It would be a good idea to change the oil in the engine, too, because sometimes water can be pulled in through the case breather, but I’m pretty sure the CRF has a baffle that makes it difficult for the water to make it all the way to the motor. Good luck! -Jimmy LewisToo Tall?
I’m 11 years old and am big for my age-I’m about 5 feet 5 inches tall and 130 pounds. I currently ride a TT-R125, and I’m ready to step up. I’m getting a YZ85, but I need advice on how to make it a little taller for when I grow as I won’t be buying another bike for a while. I’ve heard about a tall seat. Is there such a thing? And maybe custom suspension? Also, how much would a big-wheel kit cost? I’d really like a list of some things that will help. -Zach JacobsonI’m not aware of any tall seat kits for 85cc machines. Most riders on 85s want the bike to be smaller, not taller. At 5 feet 5 inches tall, you are already what I consider too tall for an 85. A 125cc two-stroke or a 250cc four-stroke might be a better plan. If you are that tall at 11, I think it is safe to assume that you aren’t going to get smaller. Take it from me! -Karel KramerSprocket The Pocket Rocket
In your May ’06 article on the KTM 250 SX-F, you mentioned moving its power around, as the KTM has a ton of top-end power. Have you come up with a combination that I can try on my bike? -Rob Woodard, Carlsbad, CAI think everyone with a 2006 KTM 250 SX-F is looking for a combination that will expand the awesome mid-to-top pull of the Austrian motor. My favorite mod for doing this has been to install a one-tooth-larger (49) rear sprocket. It’s a quick and cheap fix, and on tighter, slower tracks (such as REM races at Glen Helen), it works great, as the bike really pulls out of the corners. Exhaust systems seem to have little effect, though the Akrapovic system I’ve been running has given it a little more bottom-and a sweet, quiet sound! The only problem with the 49 on the rear is that the bike’s versatility takes a hit. No longer will it crank past the Japanese bikes up long start straights or around faster, wide-open tracks (such as the National track at Glen Helen). On the right track, a larger rear sprocket is money and makes the bike sweet. But it doesn’t fix it all around. That’s a cure I haven’t found yet. Until I do, I’ll keep swapping sprockets. -Jesse ZieglerMental Overeating
“The moto action has been nothing short of insane, with Travis Pastrana, Nate Adams and reigning Dew champ Kenny Bartram all dicing for the lead….” (Tear Offs, Nov. ’06)? Hmm, Bartram’s been out of action since the X Games, when he came up short on a 115-foot dirt-to-dirt double and busted some bones in a gnarly endo splat. I saw him in person watching the Portland leg of the Dew Tour, cast and all. Also, Pastrana mysteriously pulled a no-show during the Denver stop, strange considering he had just locked in the lead. Just wanted to point out the little misprint. -Cameron LivermoreThanks for keeping us on our toes, Cameron. One thing you should know about magazines is that they can have incredibly long lead times for each issue. Cowboy Kenny may have been hurt when you wrote your letter, but when the November issue went to press he had just finished third at the Denver round of the Dew Tour, right behind Nate Adams and Travis Pastrana. When Kenny did crash over the 115-foot dirt double in early August, the “little misprint” was busy being printed. Also, you may want to brush up on your homework: Pastrana was a no-show in San Jose, not Denver. -Chris Denison