Well folks, I finally got to put some serious hours on our Show/Demo bike this last weekend and all I can say is.. WOW!!!
I have dreamed of the perfect offroad race bike for quite a while but haven't been able to actually go forward with it. Well now I have and this thing is everything I could ever want in an offroad race bike and more.
We took the new girl out to Westwater just into Utah from Grand Junction to the Mels loop area. We unloaded to perfect skies, rising temps and wet sand!!! As we started off the first thing that I noticed was that the bike felt very familiar underneath me right off the bat. Normally it takes me quite a while to get used to a bike that I don't ride but that wasn't the case with this one. Its ergonomics were perfect immediately and I picked up the pace quickly. As we charged off into the desert the suspension and motor warmed up and it began to handle every bump, turn or rock flawlessly. Factory Suspension Works had nailed the fork and shock re-valve and no adjustments were necessary all day. I really can't say enough about the chassis on this bike. It is firm but forgiving, stiff but plush in the chop. It never felt unsettled or darty and it rewards speed. The faster you go, the better it handles.
All of our parts that we hung on it did an amazing job too. The Fastway linkage guard was amazing. I managed to smack a few rocks really hard with it and it glided right over without so much as a whisper of real damage. The Flexx Bars from Fasstco are amazing. I have wrist problems and no matter how good my suspension is, I used to be seriously fatigued at the end of a day but not with these bars. I feel like I can ride all day without any problems. I am so happy we put the 18" rear wheel on this bike. That little bit of cushion makes a big difference during a long day filled with choppy sharp edged rocks. All of the rest of the guards and parts did a great job but didn't get tested too much that day. (More to come when they get beat up)
Now the Motor!!! Holy crap this thing is fast. I have ridden a bunch of 250 two strokes but never one as good as this. It is bone stock except for our jetting and powervalve tuning. I can honestly say that this is the best running 250 I have ever ridden. It has a lot of low end grunt but will pull like a freight train all the way to the moon. It never seems to sign off or run out of umph. The TC comes with a map switch on the bars and I honestly didn't think much of that when I got the bike. My 300's switch doesn't seem to make much difference so I thought this would be the same. Wow, I couldn't have been more wrong. It the "slow" position the bike is very easy to ride and resists lighting up the rear tire when you get a little ham-fisted with the throttle but still rewards revving the motor out to the next turn. When you switch it to the "hot" ignition map this thing BARKS!!! It is like adding a little bit of Nitrous to the system. I can't believe that changing the ignition timing could make that big of a difference but it does for sure. When we get enough hours on this top end I am going to replace the cylinder with a 300 SX kit from Husqvarna and doing some Highland Cycles porting. I am really looking forward to how that will do.
After quite a few miles I handed her off to Mick Holloway who is my employee and a local pro rider. Mick is young and rides a CRF450R and usually poo poos the 2 strokes because loves that violent power from a 450 motocrosser so I was surprised to see the giant smile on his face when I pulled up to him after his first section. He said "this thing is awesome" as he kicked it and took back off. Normally when we switch he is ready to get back on his Honda as soon as possible but not this day. He rode probably 10 miles on the husky and loved it. He is going to be racing it for us in Mesquite next month and I think he is going to do really well.
So for the day we ended up putting in a respectable 55 miles of mainly single track and I honestly don't think this bike could be any better. I never felt out of control but I was never bored looking for more power or excitement. I can't wait to get her onto some Endurocross style terrain and under some better riders. Stay tuned for more about Elsa the Wonder Husky!!!