Factory For A Day: Racing The 2015 Factory Husqvarna TC125

When Andy Jefferson (Media Relations Manager) from Husqvarna calls and asks if you want to race a 2015 Factory TC 125 two stroke at the MTA Two Stroke Nationals at Glen Helen you immediately say “yes”! He even offered to give me a mechanic, my long time friend and Husqvarna employee Charles Jirsa, to wrench on my bike for the race. What’s unique about Husqvarna’s brand is that their “factory” parts can be purchased through there “Husky Power” catalog. These are not just branded factory parts but actual pieces that you see Zach Osborne and Jason Anderson racing with on the Rockstar Energy Factory Husqvarna team. Once I committed, Husqvarna went to work and pulled the stock TC125 powerplant out and let their in house Factory Services department port and polish the cylinder on the TC125 along with installing WP A-kit cone valve forks and WP A-kit traxx shock, FMF pipe and 2.1 titanium powercore silencer, titanium factory footpegs, factory triple clamps, Brembo factory front brake caliper, and a whole host of other Husqvarna Powerparts trinkets and aftermarket goodies.

It has been a little while since I took some laps on a fully modified 125 two stroke (since 2004 AMA Supercross series when I weighed 150 pounds) so I was fearful that the little Husqvarna’s engine wouldn’t pull my current 2015 170 pound body up the hills of the infamous Glen Helen Raceway. Once I rolled out onto the track I was relieved that this little white screamer would oblige by pulling my 170 pound frame around very well on the hilly circuit (I just had to remember to downshift twice into corners, instead of once). Bottom end pulling power was better than I could of hoped for as the Factory powered Husqvarna TC125 pulled second gear starts with ease and even gave me the first moto holeshot! Mid range is where this Factory Services engine came to life. Clicking third gear out of corners impressed me, as I had to fan the clutch in order to keep the front end down. Driving up the Glen Helen hills is where I made up most of my time on my competitors. The TC125’s top end pulled so far that I could click fourth gear half way up Mt. Saint Helens and it wouldn’t fall off the pipe! I noticed the bike was slightly rich through the mid range so we leaned out the needle clip position one from stock, as that really helped clean up the middle to upper rpm ranges of the power.  Accelerating out of corners where there acceleration bumps the throttle could be left wide open and the engine revved out very cleanly.

You only can get the power to the ground if you have a well, set up balanced chassis and suspension. The WP A-kit cone valve fork and Trax shock was valved for my weight and ability by Ride PG Suspension’s Bart Hayes. Bart is known for some great off-road suspension settings, as he helped WP set up the 2014 Factory Husqvarna off-road race team. The WP cone valve fork has so much added comfort over the standard 4CS fork over small square edge and braking bumps. The cone valve fork mid stroke doesn’t have the harsh feeling (like the 4CS fork) when braking hard into corners. It has enough hold up (damping) in the front end to let me be aggressive but also gave me enough front-end traction, so I could really lean the TC125 into corners. Bottoming resistance with the cone valve fork was superb at Glen Helen where there are many sharp steep single rolling jumps with holes and square edge. I could over jump and land in holes without feeling that dreaded metal-to-metal feeling while keeping my wrists happy. The only downside that I could feel to the WP cone fork was on acceleration bumps at the very top of the stroke. It was a little stiff and deflected off of acceleration bumps when accelerating out of corners. Out back the A-kit WP trax shock worked well but it wasn’t as drastic of a difference from the standard WP shock. We ran the sag at 104mm, which we found, made the bike feel balanced coming into corners. The trax shock had a firm yet controlled feel to it when hitting square edge while accelerating. You could feel the rear of the bike hit the square edge and soak it up instead of coming to a stop with the standard version. Even though I think you could make the stock shock work well I would recommend the expensive WP A-kit fork (for aggressive riding or racing) as it is a big difference in comfort from the 4CS production parts.

Other smaller parts of the bike (but equally as impressive) that popped out to me while I was racing were the factory front Brembo front brake caliper and its power! The front brake was so strong but had so much control it helped my brake later coming into corners. I realized mid-moto that I could hold on the throttle that extra second and get enough braking power to be able to make the corner cleanly. The beautiful factory titanium pegs weren’t friendly on my boot soles but they sure kept me locked into the screaming TC125’s cockpit very well. Although I didn’t notice any performance gains on the track with the carbon subframe it did make my “factory for a day” seem that much more legit!

When the E-Z UP was folded up and put away and all the two smoke was cleared, the mighty Factory Husqvarna TC125 got me on the podium with a third. The taste of the champagne was sweet and it was a blast to not only test this bike, but also to actually race and push the limits to see what it could and couldn’t do, especially under the brutal rough Glen Helen condition. Yes, the parts on this bike are expensive but this is actually a factory bike you have the choice in building yourself. There is nothing on this factory steed that is off limits to the consumer, you will just have to work some extra overtime or ask Santa for an early Christmas present.

To see the complete parts list and even more details about the 2015 Factory Husqvarna TC125 make sure to check out the August issue of Dirt Rider magazine.