Bigger is better againYou have to love a man with a mission, or in this case a company with a mission. Thumper Racing’s life work is to make four-strokes bigger and stronger without compromising the reliability. To meet that goal, owner Gary Hazel and engine ace Russell “Ragin’ Cajun” Hicks obtain each brand-new four-stroke model then run a full-court press on it to suss out how big the engine can safely and economically grow. Dirt Rider’s 125cc-class shootout (Jan. ’04) was barely put to bed when Hazel called to ask if we were interested in a CRF270. Trust us, we were interested. We’d ridden KTM and Yamaha 250 four-strokes that Thumper had grown to 300 and 290 and were impressed! But those were strict performance evaluations, and we wanted a different twist—something that would test the stamina of a big-bore small-bore. We told Hazel that if Thumper had the 270 ready for our annual 24-hour test, we’d spin it 12,000 rpm for a whole day and see what happened.Hazel worked with Wiseco to design a 2mm-oversize piston with more skirt area than the stock slug. Then the folks at Thumper called us before they actually had a running bike. Time didn’t do them any favors, but they pulled the bike together with a 1mm-oversize piston (roughly 260cc) a few hours before it needed to ship off to arrive at our test. The 260 piston didn’t have the added skirt area they wanted, so they came to our test not knowing how it would work. Dick Burleson rode the bike for photos and reported it had good bottom—enough bottom that Hazel changed the gearing from 13/51 to 14/50!With the CRF270 starting life as a motocross bike, Thumper called on ESP (Exceptional Suspension Products) to do its magic. ESP softened the suspension at both ends. The final performance-related changes were an FMF Q muffler with a PowerBomb header (to meet Hungry Valley’s 96-decibel sound-level and spark-arrestor requirements) and the Dunlop race-replica 756 tires. The Q got the bike through at 93 decibels without crimping the power, and the tires hooked up great everywhere. We questioned the use of the rapid-wearing RR tires for an endurance event, but both sneakers lasted the entire 24-hours. The rear was toast, but it did its job.During the event the 270 never sat still, and every rider loved it, including heavier riders who have no reason to like a small-bore thumper. Riding off-road with a stock CRF250R is actually not bad as long as the trail remains tight and low-speed. The stocker runs out of gears in a hurry, but the added torque of the Thumper bike allowed a considerable change in gearing; so the limitations of the transmission were much less noticeable. Even with the change, which is equivalent to four teeth on the rear sprocket, the 270 pulled strongly and smoothly from low rpm then boosted much harder from the middle rpm ranges all the way to the rev-limiter. With at least 33 horsepower on tap, the Thumper CRF has as much power as a really strong XR400R but in a far lighter, better-suspended and more-nimble chassis. ESP knew that some of our crew would weigh near 200 pounds, so it didn’t go crazy softening up the suspension. As a result, the suspension did an excellent job coddling the rider yet still retained the stiffness to handle the faster, whooped sand washes. We’d rate the suspension as an almost perfect compromise for our test conditions. Some of Hungry Valley’s hard-surface, one-way trails get some diabolical braking chop into downhill corners; we felt those, but none of the bikes were able to erase those teeth-rattlers. The ESP bike was as plush as any, without sacrificing precise wheel control.Bottom line, for anything but desert racing or Baja riding with a heavy pilot, we’d jump at the chance to spend more seat time on this bike. At the beginning, Thumper questioned whether the first-generation oversize piston could go the distance, but the bike ran perfectly after 24 hours. Thumper is confident the second generation will generate more torque and even better engine life. Better yet, the price of the conversion is roughly the same as most four-stroke exhaust systems and less than many. Sign us up!Opinions
I picked the Yamaha YZ250F as the best small-bore in Dirt Rider’s 2004 125cc-class shootout for its motor. I loved the chassis of the Honda, but it was sleepy out of some turns or on short-approach jumps. Thumper Racing erased my one complaint with displacement. I can’t wait to ride the full 270cc version. It may be illegal in the 125 class, but I ride the age-group classes, so I have carte blanche for engine size. This bike is a gas to ride, ESP did an amazing job with the suspension, and I hate to see the bike return to Texas. The only thing better than a cool four-stroke is a lighter cool four-stroke. This is one sweet bike.
Karel Kramer/6’1″/200 lb/B riderThe guy who handed off the Thumper CRF said it was the best he’d ridden, so I began with high expectations. Out on the trail, I noticed it handled really well and was set up properly for the loop we were doing. I did feel the power was a little lacking; but I had ridden my 450 that day, so that was my baseline. I handed it off to Johnny Lovett and wanted him to tell me how the power was, because he could compare it with his brand-new stocker. After his loop, he had nothing but grins and told me I didn’t know what I was talking about. After I rode the other 250cc four-strokes, I rode the Thumper again. OK, this thing runs pretty strong! Overall, I have to say it was my favorite of this year’s 24-Hour modified bikes. Let’s find a tight trail and have at it!
Kip Temple/5’11″/180 lb/ExpertThe CRF270′s suspension was excellent, soaking up all the bumps. It gave me confidence to push hard on the trails with the bonus of not getting tired nearly as quickly. I couldn’t find a downside to the big-bore motor. What can I say? This bike was a blast to ride—and ride fast. It had very competitive zip, responded well to the clutch and pulled the hills and corners great! I can’t wait to try one on the track. Not only was this bike the most fun, but it was the best performing in the whole test for me.
Ed Tripp/5’10″/185 lb/IntermediateThe scoot was just plain fun to ride. Less work equaled more fun. It’s a small package, but it instilled confidence. Simply a blast to manhandle! Entering turns with too much speed was no problem—just lay it over and twist the grip. It was easy to change lines, and it revved to the moon with far-superior boost through the powerband.
Mark Getzfrid/6’5″/240 lb/Expert
Scott Summers GNCC Honda CRF450R
Corporate downsizingWe hear a lot about how corporate downsizing is a bad thing, and no doubt it generally is for the workers downsized. But Scott Summers has experienced a new sort of corporate downsizing through his personal journey back to professional GNCC racing. Injuries first sidelined him when his strength and confidence persuaded him that a 100-foot-plus double jump on his home track was doable on an XR600R with woods suspension. And that after Mike LaRocco had declined the same leap a week or so earlier. The resulting injuries, and subsequent exacerbation of them when trying to adapt the Baja-blaster Honda XR650R for woods use, forced him into retirement. Finally, the pain from his injuries faded to the point that the ache of missing competition was more insistent. He tried racing for fun on his Honda XR650R and did well in the off-season, but whatever mojo that enabled Summers to win in the woods on a 300-pound trailbike was missing. His father, Wade, a longtime racer in his own right, advised that the XR650R go into the garage and never be raced by him again. The pace of contemporary GNCC racing has simply passed the bike by. For the next race, Summers tried a Honda CRF450R, and his finishing position improved from top 20 to top five! So Summers “downsized” within the corporate model structure. It was a good step down, since it made him more competitive and gave him a new game to try.We’ve ridden Summers’ bikes in the past. He has a reputation for taming the woods with brute strength, but he rides with far more finesse than he gets credit for. In our experience, his race bikes are ones that the average Joe would love. He likes a bike that is plush, with active and supple suspension. He likes power that is smooth, tractable and has plenty of torque. Frankly, we couldn’t wait to see how the CRF450R emerged after his testing. Our event was so early in establishing his 2004 race program that some key decisions—such as suspension, for instance—were unmade. The important ones, though, were a 17-ounce flywheel weight and an FMF Q exhaust with a PowerBomb header. It never would have occurred to us to use a flywheel that heavy. Adding a manhole cover to the end of the crank usually makes any engine so sluggish that we avoid them. He also had Tire Balls in the Maxxis tires. The suspension was still stock but very well dialed in for off-road, and a better-padded, soft-density Factory Effex seat improved suspension feel and sit-down comfort.Anyone who has followed Summers’ career knows he has been a Tread Lightly! advocate when trail riding, but for closed-course GNCC racing, he ran mega-loud exhaust pipes to rattle the competition. He wanted them to stress over the fact that he was coming—and they could hear him coming for a long way! We’ve been lapped by him in hare scrambles and GNCCs, and in the twisty woods it can sound as if he is right on your fender when he is several turns back. But that was when he was riding a 300-pound, 36-horsepower bike. For ’04, he is racing a 240-pound machine with close to 50 ponies. FMF is a new sponsor for ’04, so he ran the California-legal Q for our test to pass the sound regulations. But he liked the smoothing effect the FMF exhaust has on the 450′s engine, so he plans to run one all year long!After riding this bike, we can tell you he is on to something. The CRF450R is quite civilized as motocrossers go, but for technical off-road riding and racing, the power is too abrupt and excessive with little traction feel. Plus, first gear is tall, yet fifth gear is on the short side. Summers started with the gearing and installed a 50-tooth sprocket in place of the stock 48. That lowered all the gears but made first more usable. Then he added the flywheel to calm the power, which was made even snappier with the lower gearing. The Q was the final piece of the puzzle. The engine started easily (a side benefit of the flywheel weight) and pulled smoothly and strongly from right off idle. There were no real hitches or steps in the delivery, either. In fact, on the hardest polished-clay surfaces of our loop, the CRF450R felt as though the tire offered 100 percent traction. Open the throttle, do a wheelie. It was as immediate as that. Crack the throttle, loft the front wheel. No hesitation, wild wheelspin or waiting for the front end to come up. Just twist and go.The Maxxis tires that Summers chose wore amazingly little, but they still offered good traction. No doubt part of the reason is that Summers runs the Tire Balls that he helped his father develop. Tire Balls replace a tube or a foam insert and are claimed to offer the advantages of both. They allow the feel of a tube, the light weight of a tube and are perfect for conditions that would flatten a tube easily. Unlike a foam insert, they don’t age rapidly or go soft. Like a foam insert, they take special tools and knowledge to change effectively, and they are quite expensive. Top riders report they used a set of balls for a year of racing and only replaced the ones that were punctured.We supposed that the lower gearing would narrow the trans ratios until they were annoying, but it wasn’t ever a problem. The engine has plenty of pull in each gear. Some even questioned whether there was a wide-ratio gearbox installed. All stock.We’ve ridden quite a few CRF450Rs set up for off-road, and we had pretty lukewarm feelings each time. We shouldn’t be surprised when we remember how well Summers had his XR600R working. He knows an effective off-road engine, and he has built our favorite off-track CRF450R ever.The stock CRF engine is part of the problem, but some of our off-road ambivalence with the bike has to do with the stout chassis and the aggressive suspension. Summers didn’t do anything with the suspension that you couldn’t do with a screwdriver and a tape measure, but it worked very well. Hopefully, his example will motivate us all to take the time to learn how our bike’s suspension works. Whether you modify a bike’s suspension or not, knowing how to set it up properly is the best time you can spend. But when Summers raced the opening GNCC just after our test, his bike had a conventional fork fitted. That is a major change, but the added flex of the conventional front end would take a lot of the rigid feel out of the chassis. For our test, Summers relied on the tall, soft seat to accomplish part of the same goal. It worked well for most riders. The Factory Effex foam and cover do not actually make the bike sit higher. The rider merely sits down in the seat a little further than with the stock seat. The bottom line is this: Summers took a bike we didn’t consider effective off-road material and made it one of the favorites of our test. Good job!Opinions
Honda’s CRF450R is one of my favorite motocross bikes, but I haven’t been much of a fan of it converted for off-road. When I cover off-road events–especially in the East–the CRF450R riders don’t even look as if they’re having fun in the technical sections. Scott Summers has changed my opinion quite a bit. For one thing, I don’t believe I have ever ridden a Honda 450 with a flywheel this heavy. The 17-ounce flywheel and the quiet FMF Q muffler made the power delivery super-smooth and tractable. On the hard clay, it was dial-a-wheelie instead of -wheelspin. I like the traction feel the Tire Balls give the bike. The tank feels a little wide, but otherwise, I was perfectly happy on this bike.
Karel Kramer/6’1″/200 lb/B riderLooking at Scott Summers’ Honda CRF450R, I didn’t know what to expect. The big tank and 18-inch rear wheel make the bike look big and tall. Well, don’t let its appearance fool you. His CRF was incredible. I thought the big 450 would be a handful, but I wasn’t even close. The motor was tame and the power was usable. The heavy flywheel was noticeable and really made for a much more-linear power delivery. The suspension was awesome. It soaked up the big hits and rode like a Cadillac over the small chop and sand whoops. The Summers bike was the best I rode during the test. I liked the power and the handling. Scott did a really good job with this bike. I would know: I have been riding a CRF450R motocrosser for the last two years.
Corey Neuer/5’11″/165 lb/IntermediateScott Summers’ CRF450R is a great bike with lots of power, awesome handling and pretty easy kickstarting. I would have liked it better with Dunlops or at least a Maxxis hard-terrain front tire. The intermediate front was skatey on the hard-clay parts.
John Phillips/6’2″/195 lb/ExpertI didn’t expect great things from Summers’ CRF450R because Scott told me the suspension was stock. That means it’s stiff for off-road. He had a heavy flywheel and high seat foam, plus an oversized bar and big gas tank. I was shocked at how well the bike did everywhere! The motor pulled down to idle and basically refused to stall. The suspension worked better than a lot of the other modified bikes with Scott’s settings. He says the Factory Effex seat foam has a lot to do with the overall plush feel, and I believe him. The tank was bulky, reminding me of an old XR600R. Hmm, imagine that; Summers’ bike feeling like an XR600R. Whatever–it worked great!
Ed Tripp/5’10″/185 lb/IntermediateI rated Summers’ CRF450R Best of Show! The motor is what set it apart from the others. Not just because of the displacement; this baby had low-end grunt. It pulled harder and longer than any other 450 I have ridden. It has an XR650R-type bottom-end and pulled hard with no violent hit yet still turned high rpm. The suspension was smooth and plush. The ergonomics favored the standing attack position. I would change the tank (it transitioned from narrow to wide as a bull), and the seat needed to be a little firmer for my liking.
Mark Getzfrid/6’5″/240 lb/Expert
Chuck Woodford GNCC Kawasaki KX250F
A thumper for the youth movementThe prejudice is fading now, thanks to the rise in popularity (some would say domination) of four-strokes in motocross, but in the past, four-strokes were considered an “old guy’s bike.” Team Green’s Chuck Woodford is no old guy. He’s one of the hottest young off-road riders in the country and, as a former Moose Run winner, is one who excels at tough, technical races. After riding the new Kawasaki KX250F, Woodford decided he would build a two-stroke and a four-stroke for the 2004 season. He claims to have many hard hours on his first thumper in Ohio with no problems at all. He is sponsored by Throttlehead.com as well as Team Green, but as is true for all of Kawasaki’s top off-road pilots, his bikes are completely assembled by Team Green technicians.And we mean completely. The frames are stripped and powdercoated a lighter color of silver—it is the closest color match available with the stock frame paint. The swingarm is also stripped. This is a lot of work for zero performance improvement, but TG feels this way the bikes retain their looks much longer. Factory Connection-modified suspension is bolted up with BP triple clamps. Then the stock engine (with a Pro-X piston when it becomes available) is put back in the frame. The wheels are stock, but the brake rotors and pads are sourced from Dunlopad. An FMF pipe (a Q for our test) and stainless PowerBomb header is installed. Apparently, titanium crinkles very easily when it is hot, so it is not recommended for off-road use. Motion Pro, ASV and Renthal handle control issues; Michelin tires are spooned on; and Acerbis plastic and Throttle Jockey graphics provide a unique appearance.Team Green did its usual thorough job, and the KX-F kicked to life easily, carbureted perfectly and ran hard! The Q muffler produced no detrimental effect on the power that we could notice, but the KX-F is louder, all things being equal, than the Honda or the KTM four-strokes in our 24-Hour collection, so it was closer to overstepping the 96-decibel cutoff that Hungry Valley enforces.Woodford will never be mistaken for a basketball star, so he made no effort to enlarge the riding position. As such, the ergonomics are compact as on all the KX models. Most riders weren’t bothered, though taller pilots felt jackknifed in place. The close-ratio motocross transmission was a factor in certain areas on our test loop. We never actually ran wide open in fifth gear for any length of time, but we were in fourth and fifth gears a lot in any sort of open terrain. One of the beauties of the stock engine is that it barks at the beginning of the midrange, and for the most part that trait works great off-road. When you are riding with throttle control on a slippery off-camber, the transition from the smooth off-idle response to moto-style hit is abrupt. In any other situation the motor is simply big fun.We suspect that part of the wheelspin problem was the tires. The 24-Hour loop had a fair amount of sand, and all of the tires worked well enough in it; but there were sections of polished hard clay where the Michelin MS2 meat were slippery. Something like the Michelin Starcross motocross tires would have been a better selection than the tires on this bike.It should come as no surprise that a motocrosser rated highly for its turning and powerful engine would make a fine off-road tool. Factory Connection made over the suspension for the rigors of off-road, and with the action being plush yet controlled enough for the sand whoops, this KX-F was a joy to ride for any rider who fit the ergonomic profile. Good job, Chuck and Team Green!Opinions
I think Woodford made a good choice stocking his arsenal with the KX-F and KX250. For rocky, tight or hard-packed terrain, this little four-stroke will be hard to argue with. If the mud or sand is deep or the race is faster, then he will have the 40-plus-horsepower KX250 to get him through. I personally don’t fit on the KX-F that well, but I still had a lot of fun riding it. The FMF Q quiet muffler didn’t seem to affect acceleration at all. The suspension handled rough terrain, and the chassis carved up the tightest corners. I can see why Chuckie would like it.
Karel Kramer/6’1″/200 lb/B riderI really liked the motor on this KX-F. The jetting felt perfect, and the throttle response was instant. Overall, the motor was fast, and I liked the way I could rev it to the moon. The suspension was plush, but it could have been stiffer for my taste. It did make the super-chattery sections nice, however. The Michelin tires did not work on the blue-groove sections. The tires took away a huge portion of my confidence in riding the bike hard. With some hard-terrain Michelins or other hard dirt tire fitted, this bike would have been one of my favorites.
Corey Neuer/5’11″/165 lb/IntermediateFor a 250cc four-stroke, the Woodford KX-F runs hard. I can see why it does so well at the races. The suspension was plush enough for me off-road, but I didn’t feel comfy at speed. The front fork feels as if it is at a really steep angle, which makes it turn really well but leaves the bike feeling busy at speed. It was still fun to ride, and I would probably get used to the chassis feel in time. It would definitely be time well spent, because this is a fun bike.
Ed Tripp/5’10″/185 lb/IntermediateThe Woodford KX-F feels like a four-stroke with two-stroke power. There was absolutely no bottom-end, but after that, the motor was by far the strongest 250cc four-stroke in the test. This is not a good woods trail riding setup but would make for a very good race bike. For that reason, I didn’t like it very much. I didn’t even think about suspension; I was too worried about adapting to the power.
Kip Temple/5’11″/180 lb/ExpertIt has great power for a 250cc four-stroke down low, so it hooked up excellently coming out of turns. The engine-braking is fairly strong. The handlebar-to-seat relationship felt best while I was standing.
Mark Getzfrid/6’5″/240 lb/Expert
Steve Hatch Chevy Trucks Kawasaki Team Green and Throttlehead.com GNCC Kawasaki KX250
The color of moneySteve Hatch was part of Team Suzuki Off-Road for more than a decade. His best seasons with that team were when it was concentrating on winning the national enduro title, and the best was the year he brought home the championship. Not long after, Team Suzuki left enduros to concentrate on other forms of off-road racing. Hatch made the switch to hare scrambles and GNCC racing well enough, but his heart has remained with enduro competition. At the same time that Hatch was wishing for variety in his race schedule, his friend Jon Adams was feeling the drive to get back in the retail and mail-order game. Both men were able to get what they wanted by forming a new business and race team, and Kawasaki gained a huge new presence at the races with the Throttlehead.com semi. According to Adams, the two endeavors are related. “The entire reason we put the team together and built the bikes was to let the average rider know he can ride the same bikes as the pros. Every part on our team bikes is available through our shop. We can assist with setup and educate consumers on what our pros are using and what really works.”At our 2004 24-Hour test we discovered these partners do indeed know what works. Since the team needed to prep for the opening round of the WORC Series, Chevy Trucks Kawasaki Team Green technicians built our test bike. Hatch’s race bikes will have a few products that didn’t actually make it onto our test bike. In terms of performance, Hatch runs a harder-hitting engine with modifications by Varner Racing. Didn’t you wonder where they came up with the name “Throttlehead”? Even though there were no cylinder modifications to the bike we tested, the entire machine was very impressive for most of our riders. The modified motocross bikes at our 24-Hour don’t actually compete in a shootout but are in the test to be evaluated for reliability and to see their potential as closed-course, off-road race weapons. If they had been competing, though, the Hatch bike would have rated Best Suspension honors. Other bikes in the test had Kayaba suspension modified by Factory Connection, but the Hatchmobile was the most supple of the bunch. None of the nasty braking chop on our test loop even fazed this KX, but it still vacuumed up sand whoops and G-outs.The Kawasaki KX250 was a virtually new model in ’03, yet it was extensively refined in ’04. During both years, the model has been praised for its turning. The KX takes those traits off-road with aplomb. It is a nimble-handling, quick-turning machine that still manages excellent stability. The stocker is a bit weak on the brakes, but Braking and Ferodo fixed that lack. As always, there is plenty of aftermarket support for the KX lineup from makers of off-road products.Kawasaki boosted the power output of the ’04 considerably. The Hatch bike pulled stronger than we remember the stock motocrosser doing, and this bike had a quiet spark arrestor on it! The engine motored from right off idle. There is a noticeable hit to it when you snap the clutch, but the flywheel weight keeps things manageable in low traction.Traction, however, was a problem at times. As some other riders have done, Hatch and Kenda chose an aggressive intermediate- to soft-terrain tire in the Millville meat. Our course had some sand but the trickiest parts were hard dirt, so the tires were skatey. Kenda makes the Carlsbad hard-terrain tire combo that wears extremely well. Those would have been a better choice. The rear Millville had lost a couple of knobs after more than 24 hours (they had the photo session as well as the test) of “customer abuse” on the wrong type of surface.Another trait of the KX that polarizes opinions is its compact riding position. Hatch isn’t especially tall, so he isn’t bothered, and most riders aren’t either. Riders who are a couple of yards tall might be discontented, though. Perhaps because off-road riding requires extended periods of standing, the compact seated riding position didn’t draw a lot of fire.Steve Hatch has carried his many years of experience testing bikes to compete at the highest levels of the sport with him to Chevy Trucks Team Green and Throttlehead.com. It shows in the prep and modification choices for this KX250. The team has already had some success, and we think it will see more.Opinions
What first caught my attention about the Hatch replica was the suspension. Factory Connection made the action extremely plush. The suspension stayed up in the stroke well but soaked up any annoying chop. This was my favorite suspension in the test. The rest of the bike also works fine. The engine was strong, and it pulled from gear to gear easily. The IMS tank is barely noticeable but allows good range. Kawasakis don’t suit me ergonomically, but this one worked so well that I almost wished I were shorter. Our test models have been holding up very well, so if you are comfortable on a KX, grab one.
Karel Kramer/6’1″/200 lb/B riderHey, two-strokes are cool. This Steve Hatch-replica KX250 had some pretty magical suspension. Were there even bumps in the trail? I did like the power of the Hawk YZ250 better, but the Kawasaki guys have a pretty good off-road bike here. They must have a good motocrosser to start with.
Kip Temple/5’11″/180 lb/ExpertThe motor felt weak on the KX. I realize the E-Line lighting-coil ignition adds magnetic drag and flywheel mass, and the bike had a spark arrestor riding at 3000 feet altitude and above, but I felt as if I was riding a mellow 125. Stability was good, and the fork and shock seemed to work together. There were only two things I could not live with at race pace, and both are easily changed. The E-Line ignition requires a short little shifter to clear the wide ignition case, and I could not get my foot under it. The Kenda Millville front tire was a problem as well. Trying to turn on hardpack with some silt required a lot of work and concentration. Kenda Carlsbad tires for hard terrain would have been a better choice for our loop.
Tom Carson/5’10″/180 lb/ProI was very comfy on Hatch’s KX right from the start. The ergos were comfy, except for the short shift lever to clear the lighting coil. The suspension performed great on the bumps, and the chassis loved to work at speed, feeling very stable. The motor also ripped on this bike. It had good manners at low speeds yet would yank when the cable was stretched.
Ed Tripp/5’10″/185 lb/IntermediateThe KX motor was smooth with less of a hard hit that helped keep it headed in the direction it was pointed. Ergos were clean, with nothing weird to catch a boot or knee brace. The suspension was tops: It was plush yet sucked up square-edged hits the best of any. Getting a wheel in on someone was easy as the KX has excellent turning manners.
Mark Getzfrid/6’5″/240 lb/Expert
Mike Lafferty Enduro KTM 250 E/XC
So fine, they’re sold outReigning National Enduro Champion Mike Lafferty has been on a four-stroke for a couple of years now with great success. But for 2004, KTM has an all-new, super-light 250 E/XC. Lafferty isn’t one to get stuck in a rut, so he tested both bikes before selecting his ’04 race bike. Extensive testing on two- and four-strokes left him certain he would switch from a four-stroke to a two-stroke 250. After testing a variety of transmission options, he chose to go with a stock E/XC transmission. Naturally, we wanted to try his version of the new bike. Unfortunately, he injured his knee in the off-season. Although he chose to start the season and see whether he could get by, after the first enduro in Arizona, it was obvious that he couldn’t and that knee surgery would sideline him for half the season. So David Lykke won the first national on a KTM 250 E/XC he picked up mere days before the season opener.The thing is, the 250 E/XC has been KTM’s biggest-selling model, even in years when it was merely updated. Since the 2004 250 E/XC is radically updated, the new bikes are extremely hard to find. In fact, KTM had none available on the West Coast. Fortunately, the ’04 E/XC is very closely related to the 2004 250 SX motocrosser, so KTM’s West Coast office started with an SX and converted it into a close copy of an E/XC. The bike was personalized to fit Lafferty’s ergonomic preferences, and the springs he normally runs were installed. The new Enduro Engineering (EE) E-3 Series black exhaust pipe and spark arrestor/muffler were also added. E/XC lights and a Baja Designs-modified lighting-capable E/XC ignition were bolted up.As we have come to expect from KTM two-strokes, the engine has massive power yet is still controllable and easy to use in trail situations. You can hit the clutch, and the engine has a whale of a wallop; but you can ride the bike without the clutch and at modest throttle openings with no wheelspin or drama. Sweet!The suspension remained stock, though. Stock E/XC suspension would have been no problem. We had our test 300 E/XC and rode it on the loop while picking out and marking the course. It worked perfectly well. But the stock SX moto suspension felt abrupt on the choppy parts of our test loop. In other places it felt fine. Lafferty runs Enduro Engineering suspension that has worked fantastically for us in the past; but he has been based out West working and training with Ryan Hughes, so the suspension never made it back from Michigan. Bummer.Other than being stiff for our tastes, the chassis had good manners on the trail. As always, the chassis stays straight pretty well in the rough. At times, the front wheel can get wagging if the suspension setup is off, but correct sag settings and fine-tuning help a great deal. The problem comes for riders who desire a certain suspension setup style that aggravates the headshake. For those riders (and most serious off-road racers/riders), there are steering dampers that work great.KTM has made serious efforts to get the seat height of its bikes low, and some riders, like Lafferty, find the seat-to-footpeg distance cramped. Lafferty uses a taller Enduro Engineering seat with firm foam. EE has a new seat in the works that will have a flat base in place of the convex one that comes stock. The new seat should have at least 1.5 inches more foam with no added seat height. We can’t wait.The orange machines are pretty sensitive to ride-height variations. The new chassis steers very quickly and accurately, but only if you pay attention to ride height. If the rear end gets low, the bike won’t steer correctly.In stock form, KTM’s off-road models offer great value for the money, since they are already equipped for off-road with an 18-inch rear wheel, a large but slim fuel tank, a quiet muffler/spark arrestor and a digital odometer/speedometer/clock unit. They also come with a host of high-quality equipment like a tapered aluminum handlebar and a hydraulic clutch. Even fully equipped, the bikes are light (227 pounds ready to ride but with the 3.2-gallon tank empty), but more importantly, they feel light, slim, nimble and extremely fast. Add the fact that the bikes come ready to race, and you have an awesome deal in an off-road bike. Like the other two-strokes, the KTM is considered a closed-course-competition machine, which means it gets a red sticker in California. If those restrictions don’t apply in your area, then the KTM 250 E/XC is hard to beat, and Lafferty’s bike is just about impossible to beat. Just ask his competition.Opinions
Mike Lafferty usually has an ergonomic setup that appeals to me. A stock KTM has an open, roomy riding position, but Lafferty stretches it out even more. He runs his levers higher than I do, and with the hand guards installed, I couldn’t lower them. Basically, I had to ride the bike without using the clutch. The amazing feat is it didn’t matter at all. The engine is so strong at all rpm that it was pretty effortless to ride with throttle control alone. The 250 SX is my favorite motocross two-stroke engine, and with the Lafferty mods, it works superbly off-road. I think he will be happy to be on a two-stroke for the year. I know I’d be happy to be on this one, but I’d use the E/XC suspension.
Karel Kramer/6’1″/200 lb/B riderI expected Lafferty’s KTM 250 to be at the top of the list after spending a lot of time on the 300 E/XC model recently. Man, was I disappointed. The motor ran hard, but the stock motocross suspension with stiffer springs was rigid as a board. Our stock 300 E/XC worked awesome on the same trails. Lafferty does put heavier springs front and rear, but I didn’t think it would be that stiff. It’s too bad, because the bike worked excellently in every other way.
Ed Tripp/5’10″/185 lb/IntermediateThe last few years I have felt extremely comfortable on KTMs, and 2004 is no different. The bike’s straight-line stability is very good, and I felt comfortable in most areas. The bike seems a little harder to turn in some cases, but that is a minor concern. The motor and transmission are a great match, making it easy to lug the bike while staying a gear high. The hydraulic clutch works well and the bike feels light–it’s definitely a contender.
Tom Carson/5’10″/180 lb/ProGoing into the test, I was a bit concerned about how the KTM 250 two-stroke would stack up against the forgiving four-strokes. About 2 miles into the loop, I was impressed with the motor. It makes really usable power. Rear-wheel traction was easy to get, and the bike didn’t tire me out at all. The motor worked well while just cruising, and it worked great when I was pushing hard. The suspension was a bit on the stiff side, but I liked it. My arms took some abuse, but I could really pin it through the deep sand whoops. The suspension was predictable, and the bike never did anything out of the ordinary. I came away from the test with a really good feeling about the KTM. I would love to race this bike on a super-tight, rough course.
Corey Neuer/5’11″/165 lb/Intermediate
Fred Andrews Team Suzuki Off-Road GNCC Suzuki RM250
Incredible imitationWhen we told Team Suzuki Off-Road’s Mike Webb that we wanted to try a Fred Andrews replica, he said, “We’d love to do that, but it isn’t possible.” Our inquiring minds had to know why that was. Did he not want the exposure in the world’s largest off-road motorcycle magazine? Were the team mechanics too busy? Had Suzuki run out of RM250s? Or what? As it turned out, the explanation was much simpler than that. Rodney Smith, Mike Kiedrowski and Fred Andrews will be racing with works Showa suspension and works rear suspension linkages. “We don’t have extra sets of works suspension, so we could build a bike that looks like a Team Suzuki Off-Road bike, but it wouldn’t really be a replica, and I’m not sure if there is a way to put lights on it,” Webb explained. We still wanted to see how the new RM250 functioned off-road, so we asked FMF to build us a good off-road race bike that was the closest replica it could fabricate without violating its National Security Act.Turning the RM into a potent closed-course off-road weapon is remarkably easy. There have been years when the Suzuki team ran heavily modified engines, but for ’04 the bike got an FMF pipe and muffler, a flywheel weight and not much else. The motor is plenty strong, but the team wanted the power to get to the ground as easily as possible. Power that you can’t connect to dirt is worthless. Bolt-on products produced all the usable power the team riders wanted.For the chassis, we had to do without the works linkage and suspension, but RG3 handled modifications on production suspension for Team Suzuki Off-Road for years before it wangled works suspension. RG3 set us up with what it would build for a customer, and then supplied one of its top triple clamps with the rubber-mounted, four-post handlebar clamps that Andrews and the boys use. Throw in team graphics, Dunlop tires and hand guards, and we were ready to hit the trail.We can sure see why the team went with a stock motor. The RM is a hard-hitting missile of a motocrosser with power that is zingy and not all that tractable in slippery conditions. The team’s mods transform the character! The power is smoother with a strong torque feel. Acceleration is linear from right off idle, and remains strong through the midrange as it builds into the eye-opening high-rpm rush for which the RM is famous. Even with the torque-oriented pipe, spark arrestor and flywheel weight, the engine is far from toothless. It’s still as potent as the stock motocrosser, but more of the horsepower gets to the ground with less drama. With the mods, the RM merely requires reasonable throttle control to keep things civilized. The clutch and shifting action that we love on the track work fine on the trail. The gear ratios also felt good for our loop.The same is true of the handling. The RM is nimble on the track, with a light feel and great steering. It carries those traits onto the trail as well. Even on faster sections, the RM was fairly stable and controlled, but when it got to twistier bits of the course, the bike really shined. It doesn’t matter whether the turns are flat and hard or sandy and bermed—the RM likes to change directions.The suspension, which works so well on the track, would, however, beat the snot out of the rider on the trail. Fortunately, RG3 whipped it into shape. Like the Am-Pro Yamahas, the replica RM was a touch on the stiff side when we were just cruising along but great when we punched the throttle and bumped up the pace. It is far more reactive to small bumps than moto suspension, so it passes less of the terrain to the rider’s hands and arms; but it still has the firmness to handle large whoops or even sudden G-outs or dips without slamming bottom.The bottom line is that the RM works great, and a week after our test, the team went 1-2 at the first GNCC of the year. Even if, as one rider said, “this bike isn’t trick enough to be a Team Suzuki practice bike,” it was plenty trick and effective for the majority of our test crew. We’d be happy to race this bike off-road, and we’d take this engine in our RM250 for moto. Power that hooks up this well and drives as hard as the team bike does would be welcome on any track. The point is that this RM is not for the track. It’s for GNCC competition, and even without the works suspension or the factory linkage, it is a serious race weapon in that arena.Opinions
Suzuki’s RM250 is a sweet motocross bike, but the engine is so responsive it gets me in trouble. Andrews’ RM–with its off-road modifications–still has an attitude, but now it has manners. Even with the power smoothed for off-road, it would still be a better motocrosser for me than the stock bike. On our test loop, the RM was fast and fun, with ample tractable boost and suspension plush enough for comfort yet stout enough for whoops. As good as this bike is, it isn’t trick enough to be a real Team Suzuki Off-Road practice bike. No wonder the team has so many championships.
Karel Kramer/6’1″/200 lb/B riderYou can tell Team Suzuki Off-Road has been building championship off-road bikes for a long time. The suspension worked great, soaking up the trail with ease. The ergos were spacious and very comfy. The motor was very ridable yet barked real mean when asked. My only gripe was a little bit of vibration, but that’s definitely a small nitpick. I’d be glad to ride this bike.
Ed Tripp/5’10″/185 lb/IntermediateAndrews’ RM250 hits hard from the bottom, so be ready to get with the program when it hooks up. I called the RM the barkmaster. The RM excels in shifting and clutch performance, as it does in the handlebar-seat-footpeg relationship. The suspension sucked up everything with predictability.
Mark Getzfrid/6’5″/240 lb/ExpertThe motor on the RM works really well. It has a nice, broad range, allowing you to control the power on the slippery stuff; however, it felt fast on top, and steering the bike in the tight bushes was a breeze. The Suzuki wins the turning category hands down. I like how the bike’s nice, roomy layout enables you to move around in an unrestricted fashion. The suspension seems well balanced. My biggest concern was the rear shock blowing through the travel on some of the big whoops. This caused me to lose confidence when I was in the big, sandy whoop sections. I am sure the problem could be cured with a little shock work or linkage modification.
Tom Carson/5’10″/180 lb/Pro
Randy Hawkins Am-Pro Enduro Yamaha WR250F
Champion’s ChoiceMultitime National Enduro Champion Randy Hawkins has competed on the whole gamut of off-road racing equipment from air-cooled European bikes to modern two-strokes and four-strokes. After a couple of years on 400 to 450cc four-strokes, Hawkins plans on spending more time on the 250cc four-strokes for 2004. Hawkins actually races both WR and YZ models, though he has different setups depending on which he chooses as the base. Since our test favors good lighting capability, he decided to begin with the WR250F to prepare his race replica. Of the 250cc four-stroke off-road machines, the Yamaha has the strongest engine, so he chose not to make internal modifications other than a Wiseco piston. In addition to making closed-course modifications to the jetting and replacing the throttle stop with one from a YZ250F, he put on an FMF Q exhaust with PowerBomb header, which shaved weight from the stock stainless steel system. The only other performance modification was a Vortex ignition with the switches set on one and seven.Hawkins knows the importance of the details when it comes to races that are a minimum of three hours long. He doesn’t mess around with suspension. He’s been working with Factory Connection for years and had the company modify the legs on our WR. Hawkins and Ty Davis were rivals on the national enduro circuit, but lately they are working together more often than they are battling. Davis’ Zip-Ty Racing comes up with some cool products, so Hawkins uses Zip-Ty quick-change wheel spacers and triple clamps. The clamps are set up to mount a GPR steering damper. He also owns the brake-disc manufacturing company Am-Pro, so guess what oversize disc his bike wears up front? He detailed the rider compartment with a Renthal bar and Cycra hand guards. The final piece of the puzzle was Bridgestone tires.The changes Hawkins makes seem pretty minimal when you feel the difference between the stock bike in our production test and his replica. We were actually amazed at how much stiffer Hawkins runs his bikes than stock. We’d have thought that such a woods-trained fellow would like softer suspension than that of a stock WR, but he runs the fork and shock quite a bit stiffer than stock. Out West that makes sense, but in the woods? Of course, who are we to argue with his success? The explanation for the firm suspension is that this is the way a national-level enduro rider “rides the possibles.” Serious riders know exactly when it is possible for a club to have a legal check. Whenever the speed averages are tight, aggressive riders go as fast as is reasonably possible when there is no check likely. When they approach the mileage where a check is legal, they slow and check their time. If they are late, they stay on the gas; if they are early, they rest until time catches up before continuing. In other words, they ride at near-pro motocross pace between possible checks.So it isn’t too much of a stretch to see that stiffer is good for Hawkins, but we were pleased to note that stiffer did not mean harsher. The Hawkins WR feels firm but absorbs well and does a good job keeping trail punishment from reaching the rider. The control is crisp and sure, so you feel confident you’re making your best pace. We like that. The stocker is certainly plush as well, but it feels sloppy and wallow-prone after you ride the Hawkins bike. It didn’t matter whether the modified WR was pounding whoops or cutting through chop–the bike rode nicely up in the stroke and did exactly what was asked of it.The combination of the pipe and ignition made the engine pull very strongly with a gnarly swell of oomph (for a 250cc four-stroke) in the midrange that builds to near-blender rpm on top. Hawkins lowered the final-drive gearing a bit as well, so the WR picks up successive gears with authority. It accelerates briskly any time the throttle is open with no bogs or hesitation. As with any small-bore, you do a fair amount of shifting when you hustle, and Hawkins is a rather-notorious clutch hound, so he uses a Hinson billet-aluminum clutch basket to keep the clutch action and feel working smoothly. This engine gets the WR out of turns strongly and makes quick work of short, straight sections. That describes woods racing, so this bike works great on the trail. In spite of its healthy power, the WR easily passed the 96-decibel sound test. Plus, it ran hard for the whole 24 hours without a hiccup.We’ve been to Randy Hawkins’ house, so even if we hadn’t known from experience that Hawkins knows bike setup, we should have realized that a woods guy with a supercross track in his yard would build a bike we’d like. The combination of products, and the reasons for which they were chosen, makes this bike a trail weapon extraordinaire. And that’s true no matter what they call trails in your riding area.Opinions
Hawkins’ WR250F impressed me. The Factory Connection suspension allowed the bike to be pushed a lot harder than a stocker, and the engine ran very well. Like a YZ250F, the WR hits hard down low, then the FMF Q and the Vortex ignition let it scream on top. As a package the modified bike is faster, handles better and is more comfortable–I call that a home run.
Karel Kramer/6’1″/200 lb/B riderRandy Hawkins is a lifetime hero of mine, and getting the opportunity to ride his bike was great. Two years ago I raced a YZ250F in the WORC Series, but it had moto suspension. The first thing I noticed about Hawkins’ bike was how good the suspension is. I could take any line I wanted, and the bike was solid and extremely predictable. The motor was basically stock, and that is a good thing. The 250F is the fastest of its class, and I really like the way the motor behaves with just an exhaust system and ignition. The Hawkins WR is a great all-around bike. It worked in the tight sections, and really worked in the wide-open sections. One thing that I learned from riding this bike: I will never, ever ride another off-road race with stock MX suspension!
Corey Neuer/5’11″/165 lb/IntermediateOf all of the bikes in the test, this one handled the best. When you get on a bike and it goes where you are thinking, that is a good-handling bike. You really had to rev the motor. I thought I was revving it enough, but there seemed to be a huge gap between gears. So I tried revving it a little more, and that’s when it started to go. What is the rev limit on these things? 20,000 rpm? Once I figured that out, the bike was good.
Kip Temple/5’11″/180 lb/ExpertThe Randy Hawkins WR250F was a lot more forgiving than the Hawk YZ. The suspension was firm overall, but much more active on the small bumps and chop. I could ride this bike all day. It seemed faster than the stocker. The power is spread throughout the rpm range, and you need to use it all for racing. I question how this WR could hang with the two-strokes on faster sections, but I do not question the benefits of the thumper for tight stuff in the hands of nonpro riders. This bike just felt really balanced and controllable. If I had to do 24 hours by myself with one bike, this would be the one.
Greg Herbold/6′/190 lb/ExpertRandy Hawkins had this bike set up really well. The ergos were very comfy, with the bar-to-seat-to-pegs space great. The motor needed to be wound a little harder than the others, but time has shown that the WR can handle it. Randy had changed the gearing a little—I’m sure that’s why it felt as if it needed to be revved a little more than normal. Suspension action was very good, too. There is something about riding a small-bore four-stroke that is so fun it’s worth the price of admission.
Ed Tripp/5’10″/185 lb/IntermediateYou need to keep the revs up to go fast. Clutch work won’t help if it bogs; quick action on the gearshift is needed to keep it pumping ponies. It is light and responds quickly to rider input in corners. The rear suspension was too deep in the stroke for my weight, so it did not soak up squared-edged hits well. My boot hung up on the brake lever, requiring a conscious repositioning of my right foot.
Mark Getzfrid/6’5″/240 lb/Expert
Barry Hawk Am-Pro GNCC Championship Replica Yamaha YZ250
Champion’s ChoiceTest rider Greg Herbold offered some great advice: “Whenever you get a chance to ride a motorcycle with a No. 1 on the plastic, jump at it. Especially if that No. 1 is a legitimate AMA GNCC No. 1.” We couldn’t agree more. We originally invited Randy Hawkins and his WR to the 24-Hour, then he said Barry Hawk was coming with him and asked if we wanted to ride a replica of the championship bike. We weren’t stupid enough to pass up the offer. So Hawkins arranged for FMF to assemble two bikes instead of one.Like Fred Andrews and Suzuki, Hawk makes no porting or compression modifications. He installs a Wiseco piston, a Moto Tassinari V-Force reed cage and an FMF Gnarly pipe. Depending on local race regulations, Hawk runs an FMF silencer or spark arrestor. For our test, he dressed his YZ in an FMF Q spark arrestor. It is a little longer and quieter than FMF’s Turbine Core spark arrestor/muffler. For most races, Hawk runs a Steahly 9-ounce flywheel weight, but at night during our test, he switched to an E-Line high-output lighting coil ignition. The E-Line allows the stock ignition to run the engine, but it has a powerful secondary ignition that runs the lights only. The extra magnets and the magnetic drag act like a heavier flywheel, so the Steahly unit wasn’t needed at night.Hawk runs Zip-Ty Racing triple clamps, shark fin and wheel spacers as well as an Am-Pro 270mm front disc and EBC brake pads.He likes the Renthal Fatbar and uses the Cycra hand guards as well. The entire Am-Pro Yamaha team runs Bridgestone tires.If we thought that Hawkins’ bike had a firm ride, it was nothing compared to the suspension setup that Hawk runs. Hawk explained that GNCC courses are already rough from the morning and ATV races by the time that the pros make it to the line. After three hours of faster riders on the course, the trail is brutally rough–rough enough that the riders need the stiffer suspension to soak up the impacts. Traditional woods suspension would bottom everywhere. We’ve ridden those GNCC morning races, and the course is indeed extremely choppy before the pros start. So what he says makes perfect sense. In no way is this bike plush at play-riding pace, but the No. 1 on the plates shows what the bike is built for. When you have the hammer down through the rough, you can appreciate the suspension. The more moto-oriented our test riders were, the better they liked Hawk’s flyer.When it comes time to hammer, the engine is more than capable of doing its part. The stock YZ engine produces the best roll-on power in the two-stroke world. It pulls right off the bottom, and with so much meat in the midrange that it truly is in a category apart. The high-rpm power is certainly plentiful, but not as strong as the KTM and not really notably stronger than the Suzuki either; but no one was complaining about a lack of top-end, either. The bike accelerates so hard in the midrange that the rider can get away without screaming the engine. Very little of the thrust is wasted in wheelspin if the rider uses a little care and throttle control. The more-technical and nastier the conditions, the bigger advantage this YZ will have. It has the power to start strong at the beginning of a race, and it has the tractability to minimize any mistakes the rider might make.And if the need arises, it has the meat to bust through bottlenecks of lapped riders. Many of his other refinements are aimed at a like goal. The bar, controls and brakes are all designed to make the Hawk YZ fast and easy to race for long and tough races. The ergonomics are pretty normal Yamaha, which is to say the bike is smooth and easy to move around on yet a little compact with a firm, fairly thinly padded seat. Most riders adapted easily to the feel and had nothing but praise for the YZ.Any time you are using a motocross machine for raw material to build a woods racer, starting with the best moto bike is usually a good way to have a successful end result. There is no question that Yamaha’s YZ250 is the strongest game in two-strokes at the moment. Barry Hawk and the Am-Pro team have capitalized on the strengths and come up with a winner. Anybody who rode this bike—with or without those No. 1s on the plates—would quickly know they had a winner in their hands.Opinions
The beauty of the Yamaha YZ250 is a motor with the best roll-on power of any two-stroke motocrosser made. The YZ isn’t the fastest 250cc motocross engine, but it makes incredibly usable power. The Hawk mods just amplify those strong points. Like some of the other riders, I was surprised at how firm Hawk runs his suspension, but his bike is awesome when you are on race pace. It’s easy to see how this bike won the championship.
Karel Kramer/6’1″/200 lb/B riderKip Temple/5’11″/180 lb/ExpertThe Barry Hawk Yamaha is a serious racing machine. Jumping off the stock bikes and grabbing a handful of throttle on this thing is an eye-opener. What you notice first about the motor is how abrupt and violent it is. The Hawk bike explodes into the midrange very quickly, easily spinning the rear tire. You have to respect the twist grip. The top-end power is even more impressive, and there are no holes in the powerband. What you notice first about the suspension is the small bumps–you feel all of them! Compression damping is very firm, and the fork is in no way plush. I questioned the Yamaha boys about the fork, thinking three hours of racing this thing would leave little skin left on my hands and my arms wasted. They informed me that later in the races the courses get so rough the suspension actually starts to feel “plush”! Plus, let’s face it, these guys are way faster than I am. One thing is for sure: The two-stroke feels really light and skips across the top of the whoops at speed better than any thumper. The Hawk 250 is a tight bike that requires a tight body to get the most out of it. Hold on!
Greg Herbold/6′/190 lb/ExpertRide this bike and you’ll know two-strokes have been around awhile. The power that can be had from these bikes is incredible! It has a very smooth powerband yet rips on top. The suspension was also up to the motor’s performance, soaking up the chop very well. This bike was not only fast but easy to ride. What a great combo!
Ed Tripp/5’10″/185 lb/IntermediateWithout a doubt this bike was my favorite of the two-strokes in this test. The suspension worked very well on all the different types of terrain I encountered. It offered excellent straight-line stability in deep sand whoops and felt smooth and consistent on hard chop. The motor worked well down low and had pretty good overrev considering we had to use a spark arrestor. Overall, the bike was just plain easy to ride.
Tom Carson/5’10″/180 lb/Pro
ContactsAcerbis: 800/659-1440; www.acerbis.com
Am-Pro: 800/845-4141; www.titanindustrial.net
ASV Inventions: 877/278-7000; www.asv-usa.com
Baja Designs: 800/422-5292; www.bajadesigns.com
Boyesen Engineering: 800/441-1177; www.boyesen.com
Braking: 800/272-5342; www.brakingusa.com
Bridgestone Tire Company: www.bridgestone-firestone.com
BRP: 800/834-9363; www.brpit.com
Carbon Fiber Works: 866/447-4748; www.Carbonfiberworks.com
Ceet Technology: 760/599-0111; www.ceetracing.com
Cycra: 800/770-2259; www.cycra.com
DP Brakes: 716/681-8806; www.dp-brakes.com
EBC Brakes: 425/486-1244; www.ebc-brakes.com
E-Line Accessories: 508/295-0812; www.elineaccessories.com
Enduro Engineering: 517/393-2421; www.enduroeng.com
Engine Ice: 877/806-9377; www.engineice.cc
Factory Connection: 800/221-7560; www.factoryconnection.com
Factory Effex: 800/866-0709; www.factoryeffex.com
Fastway Performance: 503/244-8368; www.fastwayperformance.com
Ferodo Brake Tech: www.ferodoracing.com
FMF Racing: 310/631-4363; www.fmfracing.com
FTM Enterprises (RK): 760/732-3161; www.ftmbiz.com
GPR Products: 619/422-5771; www.gpr-products.com
Hinson Clutch Components: 909/946-2942; www.hinsonracing.com
IMS Products: 909/653-7720; www.imsproducts.com
Kenda USA: 614/866-9803; www.kendausa.com
L.A. Sleeve (Niks Pro-X Pistons): 562/945-7578; www.lasleeveco.com
Maxxis: 800/462-9947; www.maxxistires.com
Michelin Tires: 800/346-4098; www.michelin.com/moto
Motion Pro: 650/594-9600; www.motionpro.com
Moto Tassinari: 603/298-6646; www.mototassinari.com
N-Style Graphics: 800/831-9043; www.n-style.com
Pivot Works: 888/632-5617; www.pivotworks.com
Regina USA: 410/221-2800; www.reginausa.com
Renthal: 661/257-0474; www.renthal.com
RG3 Suspension: 714/630-0786; www.RG3online.com
Scotts Performance Products: 818/248-BIKE; www.scottsperformance.com
Silkolene: 800/214-7223; www.silkoleneusa.com, www.silkolenestore.com
Steahly Off Road Products: 800/800-2363; www.steahlyoffroad.com
Sunstar Engineering: 937/743-9049; www.sunstarmc.com
Tag Metals: 619/531-1170; www.tagmetals.cc
TekBolt: 800/425-0376; www.tekbolt.com
Throttle Jockey: 800/847-6885; www.throttlejockey.com
Tire Ball: 877-TIREBAL; www.tireballs.com
TM Design Works: 541/535-1612; www.tmdesignworks.com
Topar: 719/846-9458; www.toparracing.com
Torco International: 800/649-5722; www.torcousa.com
Twin Air: 800/749-2890; www.twinairusa.com
Vortex Ignition (MT Racing): 909/353-1253; www.mtracing.com
VP Racing Fuels: 210/635-7744; www.vpracingfuels.com
White Brothers: 714/692-3404; www.whitebros.com
Wiseco: 440/951-6600; www.wisecopiston.com
Works Connection: 530/642-9488; www.worksconnection.com
Zip-Ty Racing Products: 760/244-7028; www.ziptyracing.com