CFR-X - Dirt Rider Magazine

Ever wake from a deep sleep wanting to jump up and yell, "Hey, can you give me some gas?" Well, neither had I before the Dirt Rider 24-Hour torture test. I thought it would just be a torture of the bikes, but I had my turn on the rack.At around 1 a.m. I hopped off the Husky and saw the TM team putting on a new set of wheels and finishing an oil change. So I walked over and, as an official test rider, cut in line to ride the bike next. The team hastily finished the wheels, capped the oil fill hole, checked the level and sent me on my merry way. Things were great. What could be better than riding at night with a fresh bike, new tires, good lights and great trails? About halfway around the loop, the bike sputtered to a stop. No worries, I had my NiteRider helmet light and a fully equipped Motion Pro fanny pack (read: a killer set of tools, dude!)-everything important that I needed but matches and my cell phone. Most riders were taking the hard split as I had, and someone would come by in no time. Or so I'd thought.The TM's battery terminal had come loose earlier, so I knew where to begin looking for a problem. But just in case, I decided to check the gas tank. Empty! In the heat of the big service, the pit crew forgot to gas the bike.I figured I'd just wait for the next bike to show up. The stars were beautiful, and the night was nearly silent, almost tranquil. Every few minutes I could hear a bike in the distance, yet I never saw a light. Damn, they must be taking the easy split. I took stock: I was a little sweaty under my jacket from riding hard, even though the temperature was about 30 degrees; I was still warm enough, I thought. I decided to lie down, use my fanny pack as a headrest and wait for the next rider. I quickly dozed off.Awakened by the sound of a bike heading down the trail, I jumped up. Or at least that's what I tried to do. There was a big delay, because I was now freezing cold from my 30-minute dirt nap. I couldn't move quite fast enough. I got about to my knees right when Honda's Kendall Norman went flying by on the CRF-X. He skidded to a stop and asked if I was OK. Then I tried to ask, "Can you give me some gas?" but I was mumbling so badly I just screamed, "Gas!" Even my brain was running a little sluggishly, not to mention my fumbling frozen fingers.We made the fuel transfer, and I rode out to an access road where one of the TM guys had just arrived with a few bottles of gas. (They realized their mistake about 30 seconds after I'd left the pit.) Then I worked my way back to the pits, shivering the whole time. Quickly, I found a fire to get the warming process going because I had four more bikes to ride. Twenty-four hours is a short time if you have eight bikes to test. Turn to page 104 and see how they did. As for me, I regained body heat by taking another lap, only this time I watched the team fill the gas tank. -Jimmy Lewis

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