BLAST FROM THE PAST
David Rhodes, Husaberg mounted at the 1992 Australian ISDE. I met David when I was competing in the Qualifier series trying to earn a spot on the ISDE team. He was a raw talent, made his way onto the Junior World Team and was instrumental in their success in 1991 at Považská Bystrica, Czechoslovakia where the U.S. Team (Jimmy Lewis, Steve Hatch, Chris Smith and David) took the championship. On a side note, his parents Don and Iris treated me like gold during all the years we hit the qualifiers around the country.
GRUMPY OLD MEN
It’s summer, hot as snot and our main riding zone is in the desert. Bad plan. We’ve been hitting the Piutes, these mountains have some incredible terrain, it’s super bueno for testing and the temps (at a base of 6,400 feet) don’t rise above 80 degrees. Here’s a look at what I’ve been forced to deal with and some of the products I’m trying to abuse.
Good tough downhills littered with obstacles is a good test for my KTM 300 TPI. Weekly I’m testing tires, pipes, silencers and ECU updates. With the front tire I really like the Golden Tyre Fatty. It’s a tall tire, offers good flex and traction and I run a Tubliss front system infused with Slime to ward off thorn punctures, which are prevelant in the Piutes.
We’re testing the RK head on our Chilean 300 TPI. The billet head has a removable dome, increases compression which helps in several areas. Bottom power is number one, fuel economy is second and the engine runs cooler.
We have just testing a newly flashed standard ECU from KTM. We’re pretty certain that it mirrors the settings in the new 2020 machines.The GET unit (bottom) is programmable, but is a pricey piece. We don’t know exactly the cost of flashing the standard ECU (Top) but it will certainly be cost effective and it works quite well. For those with deep pockets, the GET unit has a two map feature, can be programmed from a phone app and can be set up to work in many elevations.
SRT sent us one of their KTM 300 TPI exhausts. It’s really stout, quite heavy and feels rugged. Performance wise we were really pumped with a strong bottom increase over the stocker. They do sell a carbon fiber pipe guard to go with the chamber.
We’re loving the Moto Z Arena Hybrid tire. We have tested both the standard unit and the Gummy. Both are extremely rugged and handle tough terrain and hold up phenomenally well. Up in the Piutes, the terrain gets rocky and rooty and the Gummy is like a cheater tire.
This old chunky dude is pretty fanatical about having a light helmet for long trail days. The UFO Diamond is feathery, has a killer visor that is extendable, vents well and uses their Rotation Impact Absorbing System.
Hapa, the Realtor and Wolf getting the stickers peeled off our steeds and loving it.
The Realtor loves his HQV 450 Dual Sport machine. Good power, a Rekluse clutch and Kreft suspension have elevated the big boys game.
Our trail boss, Alan Difatta is the only reason we actually make it back to the truck. He knows the area and the trails and puts together some wicked rides for our group.
Captain Al says “keep your toes up!”.
Hapa stuck his Husky in an ugly mud rut early in the ride and was abused by his cohorts.
DeCal Works Stars and Stripes Graphics Kit
DeCal Worksproudly introduces the all-new Stars and Stripes design, available in both Ready Made and Semi Custom Graphics Kit. This customizable kit gives any rider patriotic pride year-round and is sure to be a head turner. The Stars and Stripes Graphics Kits come with graphics for Rad Covers, Rear Fender, Lower Fork Guards, Swing Arm, Front Fender, Arched Front Fender DeCals and Number Plate DeCals. The DeCal Works website enables riders the Freedom and the Liberty to customize their own unique design and colors using the Interactive Design Studio. Price: From $199.95 to $269.90
WOLF: BACK IN THE DAY
Glen Helen, following the GP (promoted by my friend Greg Baumann) who gave us the chance to ride the course the day after the race. I was fortunate enough to get a ride on several WORKS GP machines, including Jackie Martens Factory 492 Husqvarna. At the time 500cc 2-stroke dominated and I had little experience riding a 4-stroke. This machine was incredibly smooth, super strong and had brilliant suspension.