Letter Rip! Letter of the Week - Dirt Rider Magazine

450 Shoot at what questionI don't care what bike you like best in the 450 shootout in the March issue, Jimmy. I would like an explanation of the lap times with some detail, not a blurb on what lap timing equipment you used. The Yamaha has the fastest lap times in the Pro/Int group, was that for one lap or a moto of how long? Was it a 1/2 second a lap faster or only 1/2 second a moto faster? Did all of the riders have faster laps or motos on this bike? Of the fast laps how was the bike set up, who rode it that fast, why was it easy to do so? How about a print out from that fancy lap timing equipment not the bar graph a monkey made with four crayons. Why not test the Yamaha with a loud pipe to see what effect on the riders and lap times it would have. I'm looking for the value in your comparison.
Steven Handl
Great Falls, MT
The lap times were an average of four motos with four pro/int riders on the bikes, all four laps of all four motos counted towards the total time that was then divided by 16. It averaged out to 1/2 second faster than the other bikes. That information is a little too much for the attention span of most readers, I feel. The chart gets the job done.Sorry for the crayon drawings, my art director likes them. Crayons that is. But sometimes on deadline he does act like a monkey.We test the bikes stock like you can buy them from the dealer. We sometimes test a lot of the modified stuff but do not have the time or resources to repeat the tests with modified bikes as it is pretty involved to rent tracks, get quality test riders and run motos. I suspect the lap times would get higher on the Yamaha if it were modified as the bike would likely become harder to ride (Yes, it would be faster and hit harder with most aftermarket pipes) and slower when ridden by a group rather than an individual who might want this type of performance. And loud pipes and the riders who ride them suck monkey balls. Stock bikes are amazing at suiting a variety of riders (like our test riders) and that is why we mostly heap praise on bikes, they are all really good.Considering you got a comparison that cost over $20,000 in expenses (my guestimate) for a lousy $6, you ripped me off!Below is a chart for you.I'm pretty sure this will give you the info you might be looking for.