Ride More Stress Less
KTM 1290 SUPER ADVENTURE R WINS 2017 PIRELLI BIKE OF THE YEAR
OCTOBER 2017 RSA R29.50
9 771815 337001
MX OF AFRICA
2018 Yamaha WR450F
AT ALL NEW
2018 Yamaha YZ450FX
2018 Yamaha YZ250FX
2018 Yamaha YZ250X
2017 Yamaha YZ125X
(t) 011 251 4000
Cnr. Malibongwe Drive & Tungsten Road
Strydom Commercial Park, Randburg
Made in Spain
Available in Flour Yellow
Alpha Gloss black/
Alpha Gloss black/
Alpha Gloss black/
FOR TRADE ENQUIRIES CONTACT
JHB 011 879 6470
CPT 021 552 1859
DBN 031 533 5300
The all new 180 boot was developed
off of our championship proven
Instinct boot. It features a precise fit,
maximum support, and long lasting
durability in an affordable package.
The exclusive silicone closure strap
system makes getting into and out
of the boots even easier. The Fox 180
boot truly redefines the boundaries of
what is possible with performance and
value. Strap in and see for yourself .
EDITOR: ROLEY FOLEY
On his 74th birthday, a motorcyclist got a
gift certificate from his wife. The certificate
paid for a visit to a Sangoma living in Natal
who was rumoured to have a wonderful
cure for erectile dysfunction.
After being persuaded to go, he drove to
the place, handed his ticket to the Sangoma
and wondered what he was in for.
The old man handed a potion to him, and
with a grip on his shoulder, warned, “This
is a powerful medicine. You take only a
teaspoonful and then say ‘1-2-3.’ When
you do, you will become more manly than
you have ever been in your life and you can
perform as long as you want.”
The man was encouraged. As he walked
away, he turned and asked, “How do I stop
the medicine from working?”
“Your partner must say ‘1-2-3-4,’” the
medicine man responded, “but when she
does, the medicine will not work again until
the next full moon.”
The man was very eager to see if it worked
so he went home, showered, shaved, took
a spoonful of the medicine and then invited
his wife to join him in the bedroom. When
she came in, he quickly took off his clothes
and said, “1-2-3!”
Immediately, he was the manliest of men.
His wife was excited and began throwing
off her clothes as she asked, “What was the
And that is why we should never end our
sentences with a preposition because we
could end up with a dangling participle.
Thats for the people who pick up on all of
Have a great Riding month!
CONTENTS: OCTOBER 2017
Office no (011) 979-5035
Dries vd Walt
11: COVER STORY: BIKE OF THE YEAR
16: FIRST RIDE: 2018 YAMAHA 250’S
24: TESTED: ALTA ELECTRIC MX BIKE
42: FEATURE: MX OF AFRICA NATIONS
CALL 011 979 5035 OR EMAIL
Digital or hard copy.
46: TESTED: 2018 SUZUKI V-STROM 1000’S
62: ADVENTURE: HONDA QUEST
4 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
Piston and Gasket Sets
Cranks, Conrods and Camshafts
Cylinder Kits, Rebores, Main Bearings and Clutch Plates
VALVES,STEM SEALS AND SPRINGS
no 4 Fifth avenue
011 425 1081/4
ought to you by
Triumph SA News
Lots of gossip surrounding this brand at the moment
– and here is the real story. Triumph is not leaving SA
– in fact – South Africa is one of their very important
global markets. All that has happened is that Triumph
UK is looking for a new distributor for the brand in
order to match their global CI, and in order to do this,
the current importers took the opportunity to sell their
stock at never to be seen again prices. We sure hope
that you bought one. The current guys and dealer
network will still support the brand until the new
distributor is appointed and all that. So have a little
faith, this great British Bike is not going anywhere.
Bikings piles of Plastics
For a huge variety of motorcycles. These guys have
just brought in a Joblot of body kits, headlights,
tailpieces and fenders… Piles and piles of the stuff.
Take along your plastics as a sample and they will
match for the paltry sum from R50.00 per item.
Biking Accessories (012)
Race Shop in VD Byl
We stopped in at this lot on our travels last month.
You’ll all know the enthusiastic Ryan Shapiro who
runs around in the Sunoco race van at events all over
the place? He and his team have a very well stocked
retail outlet in the industrial Metropolis of Edison
Boulevard in Van Der Byl. Lots of accessories always
on the shelves, a fair amount of clean motorcycles on
the floor and a large workshop and fitment centre. If
you are out and about on your breakfast run – or if
you live in the area – go pop in and say Huzzit! The
coffee is great. (016) 931-1100
The boys... Fritz Lebherz, Cloete Van Rensburg, Dean
Warner, Ryan Shapiro.
6 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
KTM 1050 ADVENTURE
KTM 1190 ADVENTURE
Promotion valid until stocks last T’s and C’s apply.
Phone 011 462 7796 for your nearest KTM dealer.
The illustrated vehicles may vary in selected details from the production models and some illustrations feature optional
equipment available at additional cost. Some parts are not approved for use on public roads in certain circumstances (varies
from country to country). Further information can be obtained from your specialist KTM dealer.
ought to you by
Acerbis X Tarmac handguard
The X-TARMAC handguard combines style,
safety, and convenience into a modern and sleek
design. Designed for on-road and dual sport
motorcycles, this unique handguard features an
electroluminescent flat light that is easy to connect
to a (12v) lighting system. It is trimmed with a semi
transparent, removable spoiler that is designed
to deflect cold air and rain. A large hinge allows
the front cover to be rotated horizontally ensuring
a precise fit with most levers and controls. The
aerodynamic design is also co-injected with a
metal insert to provide considerable rigidity. The
X-TARMAC is compatible with handlebars that have
an internal diameter of 13.6mm to 19mm. LED light
strips are integrated into the handguard shield.
Available at dealers Nation-Wide.
Octane Clarino Gloves
DMD has launched a new glove for adventure
riding and Summer commuting. The Clarino glove
has hard knuckle and PU finger protection. The
glove also has a leather wrist cuff protector as
well as a convenient pull-tag. It also has superior
impact and abrasive protection for the palm and
has conductive touch fabric for the use of touch
screen devices. Price comes in at a very attractive
R545.00 incl VAT. Available in sizes XS to 3XL.
Trade enquiries: DMD: www.dmd.co.za or phone
011 792 7691
If you are in need of a very custom styled factory
looking sticker kit for your adventure, off road or MX
bike, then get in touch with RaceStar Graffix.
Multiple SA champ and current factory Husqvarna
MX rider, Richie van der Westhuizen is the man
behind RaceStar Graffix, and their work is world
class! The even have a really cool new range of RS
MX kit available, and you can now also get your own
custom made MX kit. Call 072 545 1471 or email
Ravens Racing moves
To fantastic premises on the outskirts of Pretoria, in
Kameeldriftjust down from the famous Roodeplaat
Dam. Master Machy Quinton Ackerman has taken
over a massive warehouse in order to service and
rebuild bike, quads and side by sides. It’s a family
business – Dad Dirk is on hand and helping out
– and by the by, he builds and erects shadeports
– so if you looking for one, support the guys in our
Ravens racing 082-897-2230 racing@ravensest.
8 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
ought to you by
bLU cRU Yamaha supports all
riders at this years Roof of Africa
If you have entered the Roof of
Africa on a Yamaha, Yamaha
tells us that you can expect to be
treated like a factory racer for the
duration of the event.
bLU cRU Yamaha’s Roof support
program is there to take the
pressure off you and your crew by
offering all Yamaha Roof entrants
the following services:
• The bLU cRU Yamaha Roof
Support Centre will be set up at
the official Roof start/Finish area,
in a massive 300sqm marquee
• Here, as you finish your
day’s ride, bLU cRU Yamaha’s
technicians will greet you, fill out
a job card listing your necessary
bike maintenance – and then wish
you well as you depart to your
accommodation for some wellearned
R & R!
• The next time you will see your
fully prepped race bike will be
on the start line the following
• During that time, bLU cRU
Yamaha technicians will:
• Clean your bike
• Change your tyres/ mousses
• Air filters
• Oil changes
• Chain lubes
• Set up adjustments
• In fact, whatever you require,
they will be able to do it for you.
• AND – all of this is a FREE for
• You will not pay for any labour,
lubes, tyre changes, bike washes,
or security – it has all been laid
on for you courtesy of bLU cRU
• You will only have to pay for
any parts that you may require,
of which they say that they will
have stock of most key items right
there in the Maluti Mountains!
• And don’t stress about the
safety of your bike overnight - a
have a full blown security system
in place, and your bike will be
secure inside the marquee on
bLU cRU Yamaha will have
a dedicated service crew at
each DSP, offering mechanical
and refuelling assistance to
any Yamaha rider (or their
crew) requiring these services.
Gazebos, lubes, enviro-mats,
fire extinguishers, and selected
spares will be available to keep
your race going! All your crew will
have to do is ensure that your
race fuel and body fuel arrives at
the bLU cRU Gazebo situated at
each DSP – the bLU cRU boys
will do the rest for you!
Any questions or queries can be
sent through to markr@yamaha.
New Just 1 J34 Adventure
lids just unpacked
Henderson Racing Products are the official importer
of the Just 1 helmet brand in SA, and they have just
landed the new range of J34 Adventure helmets.
Really cool looking lids that are well priced and offer
all you would want/need in an adventure helmet.
Thermo plastic and carbon fibre options are
available. Call HRP on 011 708 5905 for nearest
10 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
RACING THE ROOF?
YAMAHA HAS YOU COVERED
If you have entered the Roof of Africa on a Yamaha, you can
expect to be treated like a Factory Racer for the duration of the event.
The bLU cRU Yamaha Roof Support Centre will be set up at the official Roof start/Finish area, in a massive 300sqm marquee tent!
Here, as you finish your day’s ride, bLU cRU Yamaha’s technicians will greet you, fill out a job card listing your necessary bike
maintenance – and then wish you well as you depart to your accommodation for some well-earned R & R!
The next time you will see your fully prepped race bike will be on the start line the following morning!
During that time, bLU cRU Yamaha technicians will:
Clean your bike
Change your tyres/ mousses
Set up adjustments
General bike maintenance
AND – all of this is a FREE service provided to you, our loyal Yamaha “Roof Factory RIDER”, by bLU cRU Yamaha.
You will not pay for any labour, lubes, tyre changes, bike washes, or security – it has all been laid on for you courtesy of
bLU cRU Yamaha!
You will only have to pay for any spares that you may require, of which we will have stock of most key items right
there in the Maluti Mountains!
And don’t stress about the safety of your bike overnight! We have a full blown security system in place, and your bike will be secure
inside the marquee on each night.
RULE IN BIKE OF THE YEAR 2017
With adventure bikes arguably being the most popular biking category in South Africa it was good news
that once again an adventure bike was named the Pirelli Bike of the Year. The 2017 KTM Super Adventure
R turned out to be the judges’ favourite. Words by Dries vd Walt
The other good news was that the adventure
bike category was the best represented on
in the competition, with five of the fifteen
finalists being adventure bikes in various
guises: the KTM 1290 Super Adventure R,
the BMW R 1200 GS Rallye, the KTM 1090
Adventure R, the Ducati Multistrada 950 and
the Kawasaki Versys 300.
The inclusion of the latter two in the
category may be contentious, as the ‘Strada
is more of a road bike in combat fatigues,
and the Baby Versys may be viewed
by some as little more than a glorified
commuter. However, with suitable tyres they
will be capable of venturing at least onto
soft roads, and in my opinion, that means
they meet the criteria for inclusion.
In fact, the little Versys impressed me more
than I had expected, both on the open road
and at Gerotek, west of Pretoria, where
we put the finalists through their paces.
It is surprisingly eager and easy to ride,
which means it might be a wise choice for
beginner riders who harbour ambitions of
carrying on riding where the tarmac ends.
On the downside, I found its seat to be
The ‘Strada impressed me when I reviewed
it for another publication. It represents a
lighter, simpler version of its bigger sibling,
which makes it all the more appealing in
my opinion. Handling and braking is fairly
typical for adventure sport bikes – the firm
suspension is offset by long suspension
travel. Despite the travel, though, the
‘Strada tracks true under hard cornering
with a surprisingly rapid turn-in for a bike
sporting a 19-inch front wheel.
Like the Ducati, the KTM 1090 is lighter
and nimbler than its older brother, and
consequently less of a handful during
adventure ridings. In addition to Bike of
the Year, I recently tested the 1090 quite
extensively and I was extremely impressed
with its sprightly performance and
12 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
esponsiveness. At a considerably lower
cost than the 1290, the smaller bike is
competent both as an adventure machine
and as a long-distance tourer. If you feel
adventure bikes are becoming to big, heavy
and complex, the 1090 might be just what
you are looking for.
The GS Rallye represents something of
a departure for BMW, also being lighter
and simpler than its predecessors, but
benefiting from new electronics. In addition
to the existing two riding modes, Rain
and Road, the R 1200 GS now comes
standard with, among others, Enduro and
Enduro Pro modes. It also has bank-angle
aware Dynamic Traction Control (DTC),
Automatic Stability Control (ASC) and
optional Dynamic Electronic Suspension
Adjustment (ESA). BMW describe the
Rallye version as the sportiest GS, with a
number of unique details such as a low-cut
sports windshield, stainless steel radiator
trim, a radiator guard and wide enduro
footrests. In my opinion, this bike will do
nothing to hurt BMW’s position as Kings of
the Adventure Bike Hill.
But ultimately it was the 1290 Super
Adventure that wooed the judges with
its category-defining power, suspension
and electronics. It offers everything bar
the kitchen sink, and I wouldn’t be half
surprised if the latter were available as an
optional extra. My own fondness of the
Super Adventure stems from its lean-angle
aware ABS saving my bacon on a very
uncompromising piece of road, but partisan
loyalty aside, the fact is that the big KTM
is close to being the pinnacle of adventure
bikes. Hugely powerful, hugely comfortable
and hugely... well... huge, it is the kind of
bike that gives you the confidence to take
on any road, no matter how long, twist or
boulder-strewn. And if the road is absent
altogether, it will just make you smile that
The Pirelli Bike of the Year award has never
been without heated disagreements from
the fans of specific brands, and I expect
that this year’s award will be no exception.
But that’s not a bad thing, because it gets
us talking about our favourite machines,
and hopefully sparks a bid of interest
among potential new bikers. Whether you
agree with the judges’ decision or not, the
fact is that this year it has done a sterling
job of highlighting the adventure bike
Get to your dealer and check them out!
the KTM 1090
BMW also too
the bold step in
the direction of
a lighter, simpler
bike with the R
1200 GS Rally.
They don’t get much lighter and simpler than
this: the surprisingly impressive Kawasaki
The Ducati Multistrada
950 shows off its
1290 Super Adventure R, the 2017
Pirelli Bike of the Year.
14 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
BIKE OF THE YEAR
BIKE OF THE
Foto: R. Schedl
KTM 1290 SUPER ADVENTURE R
WINS PIRELLI BIKE OF THE YEAR 2017
KTM Group Partner
16 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
We took the 2018 250 Yamaha’s out to find out
Yamaha really seems to be on point in the dirt bike department at the moment. For
2018 they have made some subtle changes to their 250 enduro lineup to make
them even better. We took them for a good long ride…
Before we rode, we took a proper look at the new models to see what changes we
Quite a lot is obvious when we compare it to our 2015 model.
· No kickstarter. This is to make the bike lighter. In all fairness, we have never used
the kickstart on ours, the battery technology these days is so good.
· Remoulded rear plastics. On the early models, the electrics are quite exposed
behind your left leg. Once again, we have to say that in the literally thousands of
kilometres that we’ve ridden it has never been an issue, but it was not all covered.
On the new model, the electrics are neatly hidden away and protected by the
· Fuel and oil warning light. A nice touch that the older model does not have.
In 2017, the 250FX had some serious technological revisions and we’ll list them
here so you get the idea.
New Cylinder Head and Intake System:
The four-valve cylinder head features revised intake geometry for additional
downdraft effect, matched to shorter intake funnel in the air box, for improved topend
power. Inside the head, more aggressive camshaft profiles and valve springs
boost output further, while larger valve seats .
A new lightweight forged two-ring piston uses a flat piston crown surface with
additional strengthening ribs and a shorter, more durable piston pin with diamond
like carbon (DLC) coating. The new piston is lighter, significantly stronger and
together with revised EFI mapping, improves combustion performance for a faster,
more thorough burn.
New Crank and Connecting Rod
Optimized crankshaft and counterbalancer designs feature a revised balance ratio,
predictive power delivery and reduced vibration. A new nickel-chromoly steel
connecting rod is used.
The crankcase features a new heat treating process to increase strength, for
protection, the frame welcomes the addition of a rugged plastic skid plate.
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 17
Bigger 270mm Front Brake
270mm front disc (up from 250mm) brake coupled with new
pad material offers better braking.
Revised Suspension Systems
Both front and rear dampers feature optimized settings for
2017 to further boost overall suspension performance, while
the front fork utilizes a stronger oil seal system for enhanced
durability in the toughest conditions.
Did all of the updates make a difference?
Yes. In a really nice way. We made a really cool route – a fast
loop with badly rutted, whooped out flats, a lekker quarry
section with steepish inclines and errr more ruts, Twisty
forest single spoor and then an MX track.
There is a reason that we bought our FX. It’s a fun, exciting
bike to ride. Having the two models at the track on the
same day and riding them back to back gave us a good feel
for what Yamaha has done. The good news is that the new
bike still feels just like an FX.
The most noticeable difference is that Yamaha has a
machine that is even smoother and more user friendly. Just
as fast, but the revisions have made a really good bike just
that much better.
As you guys all know, the modern bikes can all be
adjusted via the Yamaha Tuning tool, to change the power
characteristics. Yamaha told us that this is how the bike
comes out of the box.
Our bike had a knack of stalling quite a lot until we used the
tuning tool to remap it. This one did not stall. Ever. So that
tells us that the bottom end is improved. And we did point it
at some medium gnarly stuff, she climbs beautifully.
We are very impressed with the suspension revisions – KYB
is top notch stuff in our books – on the rutted sections,
18 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
AT ALL NEW
2018 Yamaha WR450F
2018 Yamaha YZ450FX
2018 Yamaha YZ250FX
2018 Yamaha YZ250X
2017 Yamaha YZ125X
www.yamaha.co.za • +27 11 259 7600 • Facebook: Yamaha Southern Africa • Instagram: YamahaMoto_SA • YouTube: YamahaMoto_SA • E&OE
she felt incredibly forgiving with the bouncers soaking
it all up. Quite plush and soft and they offer a very
confidence inspiring ride – even over the whoops which
our fat editor is allergic to. Thankfully the brakes are top
notch or we might have had some extra fun as he got
more and more confident.
Power wise, Yamaha Really has smoothed the bike out
quite a lot. The earlier model feels a bit more snappy
than this one, but the 2018 is quicker. It just delivers the
power in a more linear fashion – a bit less motocrossy
which is what you want for enduro application. Most
manufacturers are focussed on controllability rather
than power generation. That’s what makes bikes like
this so good.
Through the tight twisty loop in the forest, one of our
favourite sections, we loved the way she carves. MX
genes do shine through in the handling department,
she turns beautifully – all you need to do is have the
confidence to open the throttle.
So here’s our verdict in a nutshell:
Forgiving, huge fun, controllable, Nimble, great
handling. Lots of updates have made this bike even
more refined. Experience tells us that EFI bikes are
almost ridiculously economical, so you can get very
decent mileage from a tank of fuel.
This one is fitted with loads of aftermarket extras,
from the Acerbis handguards, front and rear PSP disc
protectors, GYTR levers, Pro series radiator guards and
a Yamaha cooling fan. Tyres – Metzeler 6-day extreme
Go and ride it for yourself.
The Yamaha YZ250FX: R99950.00
• Engine Type: 250cc liquid-cooled DOHC 4-stroke; 4
• Fuel Delivery: Keihin® fuel injection, 44mm
• Transmission: Wide-ratio constant-mesh 6-speed;
multiplate wet clutch
• Final Drive: O-ring chain
• Suspension Front: KYB spring-type fork with speed
sensitive damping; fully adjustable, 12.2-in travel
• Suspension Rear: KYB single shock; fully adjustable,
• Brake Front: Hydraulic disc, 270mm
• Brake Rear: Hydraulic disc, 245mm
• Tyre Front: 90/90-21 Dunlop AT81F
• Tyre Rear: 110/100-18 Dunlop AT81
• L x W x H: 216.4 cm x 82.55cm x 128.016cm
• Seat Height: 96.5cm
• Wheelbase: 146.5 cm
• Ground Clearance: 32.5cm
• Fuel Capacity: 7.57litres
• Wet Weight: 113KG’s
20 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
2018 YZ ENDURO RANGE
ALL 2017/2016 MODELS ON SPECIAL
THE BIGGEST RANGE OF ACCESSORIES IN PRETORIA
2017 FX450 R89 9000
LEATT 5.5 NECK BRACE
LEVERS, FILTERS, CHAINS, SPROCKETS, BAKE PADS
MX & PADDOCK STANDS
MX STANDS FROM R530.00
PADDOCK STANDS FROM R470.00
Sales: 012 342 7474 / Spares: 012 342 6422
1212 Pretorius Street (Between Gordon And Duncan Streets) Hatfield, 0083, Pretoria
The Two Stroke YZ250X:
Whats it all about:
MX Champ for Enduro racing…
Unique among the Japanese
manufacturers, Yamaha was the only
company to offer an enduro, motocrossbased,
two-stroke, off-road machine.
Yamaha took its tried and proven YZ250,
gave it the bare-bones necessities to meet
the basic requirements (18-inch rear wheel,
sidestand), and then altered the powerband
to make it smoother and more tractable.
Then Yamaha took the KYB suspension
and gave the suspension manners that
changed the YZ250X into a very effective
off-road machine. In 2017 Yamaha kept its
hands off the machine, fitting it with one
update—a larger 270mm front rotor.
Then they thrust it into a market dominated
by Austrian-built super-two-strokes.
There are no obvious changes from the
2017 to the 2018 model, only a few small
cosmetic updates like the Svelte blue
Here’s the skinny:
Based on the YZ250 motocross model, the
YZ250X features a revised compression
ratio, revised exhaust port, revised power
valve timing, and model specific CDI unit
for improved trail performance. All these
features are focused on creating a wide,
controllable power character for enduro
· Two- Stroke Power, Tuned for Cross-
Country and Hare Scrambles Racing. The
YPVS equipped 249cc two-stroke engine
is combined with a wide-ratio five-speed
· Motocross-Derived Aluminum Frame
lightweight YZ250-spec frame features
carefully engineered combination of
aluminum castings, forgings and extrusions
for balance of rigidity and flex,
· Fully adjustable, KYB speed sensitive
spring-type suspension tested and tuned
specifically for the needs of cross-country
· Aggressive styling from front fender to
the rear brake protector, and is ready to
race out of the crate, complete with an
aluminum tapered handlebar, YZ-F-style
foot pegs, gripper seat, and off-road
specific Dunlop tyres.
· 18-inch rear wheel, sealed O-ring chain,
wide ratio transmission, narrow expansion
chamber, off-road focused tyres and
· Standard side stand and fuel tank petcock
with reserve position.
· New 270mm Front Brake.
· Larger 270mm front disc brake coupled
with new pad material.
Right away we noticed the compact feel of
the chassis and ergos. For riders familiar
with KTM/Husky ergos, the YZ250X tends
to feel more compact. The bar bend is
comfy, the seat-to-peg height is tighter
than on the Austrian machines. No happy
button, but the kick-start lever feels long
and allows for lots of leverage, so the X
starts quite easily. In fact, first time every
time. For our time in the saddle, the bike
was just perfect.
22 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
Hitting the hills demonstrates that the X
is all about smooth power and is nearly
hitless. It definitely has meat to the
powerband when you wring her, but it lacks
the big hit of the YZ Motocrosser.
The gearbox is a perfect combo of ratios
for a five-speed (third gear being tight) and
matches nicely to an overdrive fifth gear,
which gives it a lot of legs for off-road. First
gear runs out fairly quickly, with second
and third being used the most.
On the tight twisties on the single spoor
through the trees, the handling is magic.
The bike changes directions extremely
easily, and the front end goes where you
point it. It has poise and feels planted,
which means the wheels hook up; the front
end doesn’t tuck or push.
The clutch pull is very smooth and effort is
light, especially considering that it’s cableactuated.
We’ve said it before – and we’ll say it
again, Yamaha has really made a bike
for everyone. If you are a social rider, you
can ride her slowly, clamber up and down
donga’s – and if you want to go fast, you
can take her out onto the MX track, wring
her ear and go for it.
This bike was so at home on our test
loop, huge fun, exciting power, light and
nimble. Both Kyle and Mike came away
raving about the performance and the
racey nature of the bike when you open the
The biggest feature that kept commenting
on is the inherent lightness, fun and
nimbleness of this machine. On the down
side – Yamaha has not fitted a large
fuel tank so you’ll need to watch your
This one is fitted with aftermarket Acerbis
Hand guards, Pro series radiator brace and
a rear disc protector. Tyres – Metzeler 6-day
extreme with mousses.
The Yamaha YZ250X: R79950.00
• Engine Type: 249cc liquid-cooled
2-stroke; reed-valve inducted
• Fuel Delivery: Keihin PWK38S
• Transmission: Constant-mesh 5-speed;
multiplate wet clutch
• Final Drive: Chain
• Suspension Front: KYB Speed-Sensitive
System inverted fork; fully adjustable, 11.8-
• Suspension Rear: KYB single shock; fully
adjustable, 12.4-in travel
• Brakes Front: Hydraulic disc, 270mm
• Brakes Rear: Hydraulic disc, 245mm
• Tyre Front: 90/90-21 Dunlop AT81F
• Tyre Rear: 110/100-18 Dunlop AT81
• L x W x H: 218.44cm x 82.55cm x 129cm
• Seat Height: 97cm
• Wheelbase: 148.5cm
• Ground Clearance: 36cm
• Fuel Capacity: 7.9 litres
• Wet Weight: 103.8KG’s
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 23
The Alta Redshift E-Bike
It’s been the talk of the town since the
2016 Red Bull Straight Rhythm, as Josh
Hill contested in the Open class aboard
the Alta Redshift MX dirt bike; the world’s
first “Proper” electric dirt bike.
All you have to do is look at the Alta
Motors Redshift MX to know: New
tech electric device or not, the Redshift
was designed by people who know
motorcycles. It may have no exhaust
system, no fuel tank, no kick starter, no
traditional sub frame and no engine, but
this bike looks like a badass MXer—just
one that happens to be from the future.
Or at least a future.
Alta Motors was started more than nine
years ago with an insight on the part
of two friends, Derek Dorresteyn and
Jeff Sand, that electric technology was
ready—at least in the narrow world of
motocross and off road—to potentially
offer a better motorcycle.
Sand is a longtime amateur off-road
rider, participating in Hare & Hounds and
scrambles events, while Dorresteyn has
been a national plate holder in speedway
and had raced flat-track and supermoto.
Almost every design decision for the
Redshift sprang from the desire to build
a bike that was fully competitive with
conventional motorcycles. Over the
many years from concept to production
realization, the battery design evolved, but
what stayed constant was that it offered a
little under 6 kWh of capacity (enough for
a 30-minute pro moto or about two hours
of trail use) and weighed less than 70
pounds. That meant everything else had
to be light.
With electric bikes, the question is one of
range and energy:
Could you put enough batteries in an
electric MX’er to last a pro moto and
a little bit more? Dorresteyn did the
numbers and found you could—if you
were careful with the design and kept the
weight of everything else low. By 2009,
the two had a design on screen for a
250cc-class e-bike that looks very much
like the machine you see in the pictures
here and had begun to put together a
company to realize it.
With electric powertrains, low weight
comes from high efficiency, high speeds,
and good cooling. We’re all used to
internal combustion engines, and here is
Typically less than a third or less of the
energy in fuel goes to the ground. Another
third heats the air that goes through the
cooling system, and the final third is in
the superheated gasses coming out the
With electric, efficiencies are much, much
higher everywhere, but the temperature
limits are lower. Lithium-ion batteries
24 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 25
deteriorate quickly at temperatures above 150 degrees
Fahrenheit, power transistors bake at 185 degrees, magnets
demagnetize as low as 200 degrees, and motor wiring
insulation fails as you exceed 350. Enter the world of electric
machine trade-offs: The more efficient your system, the less
heat it generates, and the more power you can push through
it. Cool it better, and you can pump even more through.
Alta chose to design a 350-volt electric system to keep
operating currents relatively low and efficiency high, even
if that required more sophisticated, automotive-style safety
circuits. Its motor is a custom, brushless, permanent
magnet AC (PMAC) design only 4 inches in diameter
that spins to 14,000 rpm, putting out either 25 or 40 hp
depending on whether you’re looking at the continuous
or short-term power rating. Fortunately, motocross is all
about short-term power, with more than a few seconds at
full throttle the exception rather than the rule. The motor is
actively cooled by circulating oil, but, most importantly, it
weighs only 11 pounds—clawing back weight lost to the
battery pack. The torquey e-motor drives the countershaft
through a single, direct reduction gear, as it offers peak
torque from zero rpm and has no need to idle and no need
for a clutch.
The motor is water cooled and it only weighs 7
kilogrammes. Alta claims that it puts out 40 hp and 36 ft-lbs
of torque but the crazy thing about electric motors is that
they make 100 percent of their torque 100 percent of the
time, from 0 to 14,000 rpm. Also, the Redshift’s motor was
placed where it is on purpose by Alta to minimize the small
amount of inertia it has.
The Redshift Bulkhead—the
chassis core—functions as the
outer motor casing, the cooling
circuit for the motor and inverter,
as well as the transmission case
for the gear reduction.
26 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
Traveling the road
200cc’s of pure power
ready for any jungle
all terrain vehicles
32 Hulbert Street
011 493 6001
011 493 6101
Alta developed its own motor
controller, a water-cooled unit that
uses the upper frame for its radiator.
The advantages of Alta rolling its own
here were several; the water-cooled
controller could be a lot lighter and
more compact than the air-cooled
units on Victory and Zero e-bikes,
and Alta would be directly in charge
of the firmware that maps throttle
position onto motor response. This
has been one of the major areas of
development for the company, as
it writes code that controls throttle
response, motor braking, traction
control, and all the myriad of
functions that dictate machine feel.
They’ve been using a wide variety of
test riders, from Supercross stars to
EnduroCross vets, to tune this.
Motor response when twisting the
grip had to feel familiar to riders with
a lifetime of experience.
As for the chassis, the emphasis
was on sticking with geometry
and chassis stiffness numbers
that were equivalent to the best of
current production machines. The
main frame consists of two parts
that bolt together: the steering
head and upper beam welded from
CNC-machined aluminum forgings
and a lower casting that houses
the e-motor, reduction gear, and
countershaft. The countershaft
is in the same place as it is on a
conventional 250, so the anti-squat
forces and rear suspension behavior
remains similar to well-developed
Dorresteyn emphasizes that Alta
didn’t want to reinvent everything—
taking on the powertrain was more
than enough. So he and his team
studied the best of contemporary
moto crossers carefully. Steering
geometry is very similar to a Honda
CR250, while the rear swingarm is
a one-piece casting that would look
at home on a KTM. Suspension is
WP at both ends, while brakes are
Brembo, the rear controlled by a
conventional foot pedal.
Looking at other electric bikes on
the market, and even dual-sports for
that matter, some of the “standard
dirt bike parts” aren’t present. That’s
why we want to show what is the
same on a Redshift, as on any other
Japanese or European off-road/
Starting at the front of the bike, the
grips and bars are Neken. The triple
clamp is Alta branded but looks very
similar to what KTMs/Husqvarnas
Moving on to the suspension, the
Redshift has WP front and back. The
4CS fork out front is built to what
they call the “Alta” spec which they
want to be clear is not the same,
off-the-shelf 4CS fork that you
could buy form WP. The WP 5018
shock is attached to linkage which is
connected to the very KTM-looking
swingarm. Since they are building a
bike from scratch they could the bars
and pegs anywhere, yet, with most
things on the Redshift, Alta’s thought
process was, “If you don’t have to
reinvent the wheel, don’t.” Therefore,
Alta took measurements of modern
dirt bikes and put together a sort of
average placement of rider contacts
and built their frame to that spec.
Brakes are Brembo units, wheels are
Warp 9 and tyres are Bridgestone
The point is, while owners will have a
steep learning curve when it comes
to the powerplant, a vast majority
of the bike is interchangeable/thesame-as
many other dirt bikes on
the market and aftermarket parts.
The same cannot be said for other
electric bikes that use a bunch of
The only area of substantial chassis
innovation is the two-piece plastic tail
section. Without an exhaust system
having to snake through the rear of
the bike and heating things beyond
the structural limits of plastics, it was
possible to forego an aluminium sub
frame and design one that relied on
a particularly tough, fiber-reinforced
plastic that could be injection
moulded. Not only did that save
weight and piece cost, but it also
was more resilient than a metal sub
frame, actually acting as a secondary
suspension on big jump landings.
One other feature the Redshift has
that’s unlike any other motocrosser
is its dash. Without engine noise
as a cue, the Alta relies on its
dash flashing green to let its rider
know that the throttle is live and to
communicate the state of battery
In the end, though, the Redshift is
about the smooth, seamless delivery
of power possible with an e-motor
and delivering performance that can
match or even exceed that of a fourstroke
28 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
30 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
Does it succeed at those goals?
At 121 KG’s, it is heavier than a
250 even with a full tank of petrol,
but it delivers more and smoother
torque. It offers equivalent range to
a machine with the small fuel tank of
a moto crosser but takes a couple of
hours to recharge even if you have
the 220-volt charger and a suitable
outlet to plug it into. It’s the quietest
dirt bike ever and could end noise
complaints and track closings if it
were to become popular (imagine
urban motocross tracks).
And at around 150k, it’s among the
most expensive dirt bikes around,
though the company promises it
will make up for a lot of that cost
differential by requiring essentially
It’s too soon to say, but if this first
serious electric motocrosser is this
good, the future probably holds a lot
more of the same…
Recently at the ISDE, SA’s own
Charan Moore got to take this bike
for a little spin. Here is his take on
the electric bike:
My impression of the Alta:
I had no idea what to expect when
I was given the opportunity to get
onto the electric ALTA, but after just
5 minutes on the bike I had a new
perspective on what the future of
bike riding could be.
Firstly getting onto the bike the most
notable difference is that there is no
clutch. As a rider the first thing I grab
when I put my hands onto the bars
is the clutch, which is not needed on
Next is the process of starting the
bike, again you look for the kickstart
or maybe an electric start button
but on the ALTA it has a key on the
left side of the chassis, close to the
steering head. So you turn the key on
and it turns on a digital display which
is situated on the handle bars, kind of
like a bar pad on a normal bike.
So now the bike is on but will not
run yet, it has a safety feature that
requires you to activate the battery
pack first. There is a small switch
on the left side of the bar. Once
activated the digital display will flash
green and you are ready to go.
So you open the throttle and the bike
jolts forward. The first impression
riding the bike was like I had gone
back to my roots, starting out riding
on an automatic PW50. I took it easy
just to try and figure out what it was
all about and immediately found that
I was trying to clutch and change
gears. Once you get used to the fact
that all you have to do is twist the
throttle and use the brakes, then you
start having fun on the bike.
It has 4 power settings. Which
were explained to me as follows,
1 - Sunday cruise, 2 - trail riding, 3 -
serious riding and 4 - Bat shit crazy!
So naturally I started on 1 to get
a feel for the bike and once I was
comfortable cranked it to level 4.
I honestly could not believe the
power delivery on the bike. It was
so strong bottom, middle and top.
To me it had better torque than
any current 450 model. It was
unbelievable how they had managed
to create such a smooth power
delivery that is so potent.
Another aspect that is very strange
is the fact that there is no sound - all
you hear is a funny buzz from the
battery pack. Then without any motor
sound you hear the chain running
on the chain slider kind of like on a
bicycle and once you start to hit a
few jumps or braking bumps you can
really hear the suspension working.
What is absolutely incredible about
this bike is the fact that it can be
changed to suit anyone’s riding. So
for example as a professional rider
I can put it onto level 4 and ride it
super hard and feel that the bike is
capable of anything I would want to
do. Then I could put it back to level
1 and put my wife onto the bike and
feel at ease that she will not hurt
herself on the bike because firstly it
is super easy to ride without a clutch
or gears and with the power mode
being so tame it is really ideal for
So now I had ridden the bike for
about an hour and had become more
comfortable with the idea of throttle
and brake only, so I started to push
the bike harder and harder. Trying to
go faster through corners and “get
on the gas” earlier and the bike just
got better and better.
The one thing that is noticeable is
the lack of clutch or engine idle. As
you come into a corner and hit the
brakes - usually mid corner, there
is a point where you are not on the
gas or on the brakes. You are kind
of free-wheeling through the corner
on a normal bike but it stills feels like
you are moving forward because of
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 31
the inertia of the motor plus the natural idle
of the motor.
On the electric bike the power is either on
or it is off.
It is an experience I am very fortunate to
have had and am super grateful for the
I think that these type of bikes might just be
the future, but they still require a lot of work
and development before they can compete
against the current combustion engines.
Once the technology becomes available
to create lighter and more powerful battery
packs with longer durations between
charges then these bikes will become a lot
more appealing to the general public. At
the moment I think it is a bit of a gimic that
only a select few are able to afford, kind of
like the Tesla of the bike industry.
But this lot have the potential to be a
market leader in the future.
We know you have more questions and
we tried to think of as many of them that
we could. Here is what we asked Alta
and their answers.
Is the bike waterproof?
For all practical purposes, absolutely.
Without the physical limitations of air
box /exhaust, why not use a different
kind of shock or swing arm, like
To allow Alta to use proven off-the-shelf
hardware from WP.
Can it be stored on its side or upsidedown?
It is not recommended as both the primary
case and cooling system are vented to
atmosphere. Prolonged storage other than
vertical could result in fluid loss.
32 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
What don’t you want to cover with
protection because of air flow?
Is there a way to take an extra (smaller
hopefully) battery with you on a ride to
extend your range?
Not at this time.
Worst case scenario, how can I shock
By violating Alta protocol. Example:
Breaking the manufacturers seal and
accessing areas of high voltage.
Most Japanese bikes, overall, stick to a
8mm, 10mm, or 12mm hex bolt. KTM/
Huskies are similar but they use a lot of
Torx bolts as well. How about the Alta?
Most fasteners are combination head (Both
Hex and Torx on a single fastener).
What is the maintenance of the power
Any fluids that need to be replaced?
Initial service primary oil and coolant
Any taking apart/cleaning/replacing
Only consumables such as tyres, brakes,
chain, sprockets, etc.
What is actually creating movement?
Opposing magnetic lines of flux between
the stator and rotor. Alta Redshift liquidcooled,14K
rpm, AC Permanent Magnet
What is in the battery pack?
Waterproof Li-Ion 350V / 5.8KW/H Battery
Can the battery be removed?
The battery can be removed and takes
roughly fifteen minutes.
What happens if the battery pack is
Should the battery pack become punctured
it is safe to operate the motorcycle only
long enough to get back to a safe place.
That said, any sign of smoke / fire will
see you placing the motorcycle in an
area free of combustible material without
operating the motorcycle and standing
back for prolonged observation. In short,
a punctured battery is serious and should
be handled with extreme care just as one
would do with a fuel tank full of fuel.
How hot does the battery get?
70C / 158F
How hot does the motor get?
90C / 194F
How much would it cost to replace a
physically broken battery?
How much would it cost to replace a
physically broken motor/bulkhead?
Motor Assembly = around 90k
Rear Bulkhead Assembly = $609.86
What is the difference between the four
The maximum torque, maximum rate of
acceleration (flywheel), and max regen
(simulated engine braking).
Map-1 = Low traction / entry level
Map-2 = Trail application / reduced traction
Map-3 = Performance / good traction
Map-4 = Scary!
Can the owner change map settings?
Not at this time.
Is all the tuning electronic?
Power output related, yes.
Are there physical things that can be
changed by aftermarket companies to
Yes: Gearing, Suspension, etc.
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 33
A COOL PLACE TO STAY
On our recent trip to Fouriesburg with the Adventure
Company Crew, we noticed the Boulders Off-Road
Riding academy, just out of town on the Clarens road.
We stopped in to have a chat and a looksee…
A short ride from the majestic Golden Gate Nature
Reserve and only 9Kms from the Lesotho Border.
What a cool place – The Grimsteds have created a little
piece of heaven – not just for motorcyclists. Comfy Chalets,
cool gardens, a lekker dam – well worth a Kuier even if you
don’t ride Adventure Motorcycles.
Mike is a qualified Motorrad instructor and was at the
Swartkops training facility for years. He decided to get out
of the Big Smoke and this farm is now one of the coolest
training facilities that we have seen.
We took the liberty of exploring his farm – and it is fantastic
– everything from mild gravel roads to some more technical
Tight twisty routes through the forests. A big sand pit.
Twisty log sections, a cool rickety bridge – mud crossings
– everything that the adventure traveler might encounter on
Boulders Adventure Academy, caters for both novice and
advanced riders. Not only is Boulders Adventure Academy
a great training facility, but offers numerous guided outrides
for both the novice and more experienced rider, a great
base to spend a weekend and explore the surrounding
areas, and even venture into neighbouring Lesotho.
Mike will take you on rides generally not accessible by
the general public. All are welcome, stop in for a chat and
Mike will only be too happy to show you around, and you
may even have the opportunity of doing some riding… All
adventure bike brands are welcome!
Another very cool spot.
Mike and the boss, Nadine Grimsted
They can sleep about
12 people - and its
34 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
30 SEPTEMBER - 1 OCTOBER 2017
OPEN FROM 8AM - 4PM
OPEN FROM 9AM - 1PM
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DMD 905 BOOTS
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WAS R5,500 NOW R2,350
OCTANE 105 GLOVES
WAS R995 NOW R495
OCTANE 115 GLOVES
WAS R1,155 NOW R595
DMD TANGO GLOVES
WAS R625 NOW R300
MACNA BEDOINE PANTS
WAS R2,500 NOW R995
OXFORD WILDFIRE PANTS
WAS R2,350 NOW R1,100
DMD FANTOUR PANTS
WAS R1,750 NOW R850
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ASSORTED GIVI LUGGAGE,
SCREENS AND ACCESSORIES
AVAILABLE AT 50% DISCOUNT
WAS R7,995 NOW R3,995
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OXFORD FIRST TIME AND
LIFETIME LUGGAGE AT
ANSR MX JERSEYS
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MANY MORE ASSORTED END OF RANGE AND
SOILED ITEMS AT WELL BELOW COST PRICES!
Plot 316 Larsens Road
Tel: 011 792 7691
Stock is limited.
Strictly no returns. E&OE.
GPS coordinates: S26°01´57˝ E27°51´45˝ (find us on google maps)
Junior motocross development program
Thisgrassroots initiative is a Motocross
SA, Motorsport SA collaboration including
sponsors like KTM SA, Husqvarna SA ,
Honda Westrand and KTM Centurion. This
program began last year with four race
events being hosted around Gauteng at
venues like NutBush in Hekpoort and Dirt
Bronco in Mogale.
The program is in its third year.
A minimum of an MSA Moto Kids Social
Licence or higher is required to participate.
The cost is R100.00 (once off) and paid
to Motorsport South Africa (MSA).No
competitor is allowed to participate without
medical cover. A competitor’s parent has
to submit a certificate from the medical aid
that clearly states that the participant is
covered to participate in extreme sports.
What makes this series different?
It does not only provide a fun racing day
for beginner and amateur kids in both MX
and off road but they are prepared for more
formal racing by teaching them what they
need to know.
Everything from flags, to following race trail
markings, to how race days’ work.
Youngsters aged 5 to 10 on any make of two
wheeled motorcycle are eligible for the series.
Neil VD Ross’s, team Ikagengs comments :
Our last race event was held on 20 August
at Dirt Bronco. There were 42 juniors
entered for the day. This has been the
biggest entry for the series since it began
which is promising.
The race day format was an enduro race
and two motocross heats with two practice
sessions. My involvement with Motokids
development motocross started in 2016.
MXSA sponsored two PW50’s and I
acquired two bikes namely a CRF50
and CRF110 for 2016/17 seasons from
the very generous Helena Harrison from
Honda Westrand. These bikes provide the
ideal platform into beginners racing. From
these two bikes at least 9 riders have been
given opportunities to learn, train and race
junior motocross. Some of our racers have
progressed to KTM 50/65’S which makes
them ready for club/regional racing level.
The level of interest in the program has
been steadily growing, as we receive calls
and emails continuously.
I host two training session a month. It is
free of charge, the cadets only pay a track
fee. Interested parents can email me at
email@example.com or check my FaceBook
page Team Ikageng or via MXSA.
Go to www.mxsa.co.za/motokids.html for
more info on the classes and what Moto
Kids is all about.
36 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
BUI LT T O GO
A S FA R A S
DAR E T O TA
The flagship FC 450 offers class leading performance in
a lightweight, capable package. Every aspect is designed
to offer exceptional performance in conjunction with
rider comfort and ergonomics making the FC 450 equally
appealing to amateur and professional riders alike. Traction
control, map select and WP AER 48 forks are just a few of
the standard features which ensure the highest levels of
performance and premium quality.
THE 2016 2-STROKE ENDURO MODEL RANGE.
The joy of the ride is often in nding routes that nobody else has used – rea
destinations that few others would dare to aim for. The 2016 Husqvarna Mo
2-stroke enduro bikes rely on exceptional agility, a broad powerband and l
weight – letting you easily explore wherever you choose to go.
Please make no attempt to imitate the illustrated riding scenes, always wear protective clothing and observe the applicable provisions of the road traffic regulations!
The illustrated vehicles may vary in selected details from the production models and some illustrations feature optional equipment available at additional cost.
Photo: H. Mitterbauer
FREESTATE - Husqvarna Central, Bloemfontein – (051) 430 1237
Holeshot Motorcycles, Boksburg – (011) 823-5830
Belville (021) 945 8019
MPUMALANGA - Vans Husqvarna, Middleburg – (013) 282 0766
Need a tyre Steve with.... The warehouse manager...
Metzeler tyres on a Roll
The distributorship of the famous Metzeler
brands was fairly recently granted to the
Timoto range of companies under the
direction of long time motorcycle man
Guys, Timoto is quite a firm – owned by
companies like old Mutual and overseas
investors – they know how to turn rubber.
They have an extensive and established
distribution network and decades of proven
performance as the sole Southern African
distributor of a number of big-name wheel,
tyre and automotive battery brands. They
tell us that this translates into greater,
more widespread and more immediate
availability of the full variety of Metzeler
tyres, throughout the Southern African
motorcycle dealer network.
Metzeler was reportedly one of the first
companies to make specialised motorcycle
tyres, back in 1892 when motorcycles
were first being built. In fact, the company
is credited with playing a major role in tyre
development for not only the motorcycle
but also the bicycle and automotive
industries. Since 1978/79, however,
the company focusses exclusively on
We went to visit their warehouse for a visit
and to have a looksee.
Guys – the warehouse is ridiculously large –
and everywhere we looked were motorcycle
tyres stacked – literally to the roof.
“More than 2000 tyres in stock” Says Steve
– “with more on the water”.
“We deliver every day – so a customer can
place an order and the tyre will be at the
retailer either on the day, or on the following
day at the latest. That’s nationally”, he says.
And they appear to have everything from
those big ass wide tyres for bikes like the
Suzuki Boulevard and the Triumph Rocket
– all the way down to old classic bike tyres
– which are quite unique.
Literally hundreds of adventure tyres litter
On the dirtbike side of things, we saw piles
of knobblies all over the place both for
MX and enduro, with heaps of the 6 days
extreme lurking around just waiting for the
Quite an operation. And looking at how
pro-active these guys are, we reckon that
this brand is going places.
Available at dealers nationally.
Trade enquiries: www.timoto.co.za
Roof Of Africa Ready...
Steve with Whitey who has been in the
tyre trade for more than thirty years...
Tyres for vintage
38 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
11 OF SA’S TOP
WITHIN 3KM OF
38 North Rand Rd, Boksburg
Tel: 011 823 3763
New & Used Harley Davidson
motorcycles & accessories
40 North Rand Rd, Boksburg
Tel: 011 823 8400
Indian, Victory, Polaris new
and used sales.
Auto Alpina Motorrad
Cnr North Rand Rd & Pond St, Boksburg
Tel: 011 418 3300
New and used BMW Motorcycle sales
Honda Wing East Rand Mall
12 Jan Smuts Ave, Boksburg
Tel: 011 826 4444
New Honda Motorcycles.
Quality used motorcycles.
2 Wiek St, Boksburg
Tel: 011 826 4744
Quality used motorcycle sales
Shop 5 K90 Centre, Northrand Road, Boksb
Tel: 011 823 5830
New Kawasaki, SYM, Triumph, Husqvarna
quality used motorcycles. Full accessorie
122 Northrand Road, Boksburg
Tel: 011 918 6666
New Suzuki motorcycle sales. Quality used
motorcycles. Full accessories
122 Northrand Road, Boksburg
Tel: 011 894 2111
Quality used motorcycle sales.
Unit 9, The Terminal, Cnr Trichardts Rd & Dr
Vosloo Rd, Boksburg
Tel: 011 362 2182
New Yamaha sales. Quality used & accessories
157 North Rand Rd, Boksburg
Tel: 076 158 3655
Quality used motorycle sales
No. 6, V-Max Centre, Atlas Rd, Boksburg
Tel: 011 051 9104
Quality used motorycle sales
42 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
The annual FIM Africa MX of African
Nations was held at Wings Moto Park in
Gaborone Botswana over the weekend
of 26 & 27 August 2017. What a cool
event, MX is alive and kicking on the
The FIM Africa Motocross of African
Nations Championship is one of the
few motorcycle events recognised as a
“Team” event, where the points of the
official riders are tallied to determine who
the winning African Nation will be for that
The local organising committee, which
was led by John Carr-Hartley, staged a
flawless event on Saturday and Sunday
in Botswana. It was arguably one of the
best organised events held to date and
they managed to overcome a number
of challenges one of which was turning
a piece of bushveld into a race ready
Motocross Track in just 5 months.
The two-day Continental Championship
attracted a record number of competitors
from various African countries but team
South Africa managed to win the team
event for the fourth time.
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 43
Eight eight African countries competed to
take the championship trophy home. The
President of Bostwana, his Excellency
Mr. Ian Khama also attended, in support
of the event.
The pics were all kindly provided by the
talented Franziska Brandl.
The following country teams participated
in the event:
Botswana, Zambia, DRC, Uganda,
Zimbabwe, Kenya, Namibia, Swaziland,
The Racing consisted of 3 heat races
spread over Saturday and Sunday, racing
was intense in most classes.
Team South Africa took top honours.
1st – South Africa
2nd – Zimbabwe
3rd – Zambia
4th - Botswana
The following riders rode for team SA:
50cc – SA won the class.
Neil van der Vyver, Jordan van Wyk,
Aiden Henley, Andrea Mynhardt, Thor
65cc – SA, 2nd:
Lucca Mynhardt, Luke Grundy, James
Thompson, Barend du Toit, Wian du
Lites – SA won the class.
AJ Visagie, Miguel de Waal, Dalton
Venter, Jonathan Mlimi.
125cc SA won the class.
Keegan Hickson-Mahony, Richardo
Raaff, Matthew Kruger, Cameron
Thompson, Travis Goosen.
MX1 SA won the class.
Anthony Raynard, David Goosen,
MX2 SA won the class.
Joshua Mlimi, Johan Vogelesang,
Keegan Barnard, Tyron Beverly,
VMX - Vets SA won the class.
Brett Bircher, Ian Topliss, Dax Hunt.
VMX - Masters
Geoff Den, Gary Killian.
WMX - 2nd:
Natasha Rugani, Kayla Raaff, Yanke
Pieterse, Bianca Prout-Jones.
Well done guys!
44 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
All the fast ladies...
Franziska with Team Swaziland.
Ross with Jack Cheney, Race Director.
Team Botswana Team Kenya Team Zambia
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 45
2018 Suzuki V-Strom 1000
and 1000XT On The Way
46 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
You would have seen our feature on the new
650XT, a fantastic motorcycle at a fantastic price.
The new 1000’s are on their way - and with a bit of
luck, we’ll get our mitts onto them pretty soon.
For now - here are some highlights on the new
After skipping updates for 2017, Suzuki brings back
the V-Strom 1000 and 1000XT (the XT replaces the
similar Adventure) with important updates that bring
them up to modern spec. At the same time, Suzuki
has not forgotten what has made the previous V-Strom
1000 adventure motorcycles appealing.
1. Electronics lead the way for the 2018 Suzuki
V-Strom 1000 changes. The big news is the three-axis
Bosch Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU) that ties in
with a new braking system. There’s ABS, of course,
but now it has access to the V-Strom’s yaw (left and
right), roll (left and right), and pitch (down only). To add
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 47
functionality, there’s a new combined braking system that
works differently than you expect.
2. The braking system is almost invisible in action. They tell
us that when riding you still have independent control of the
front and the rear brakes. However, if the Combined Braking
System senses over-enthusiastic use of either the front or
the rear discs, it will reduce the pressure of the offending
brake, while adding braking at the opposite end. This works
in both straight-line riding, as well as while cornering. ABS is
almost completely transparent. In many ways, you have to
work on faith as it all happens so smoothly.
3. The 1037cc motor is cleaner than before, but has virtually
the same power. The exhaust was reworked to be lighter
with dual catalyzers, along with other small changes, and
the result is a motor with the same peak horsepower and a
loss of about 1.4 ft/lbs of torque. In the real world of riding,
the 90-degree V-twin feels completely unchanged, but
now the Euro4 tailpipe sniffers are satisfied. As before, the
excellent Suzuki EFI system is an important part of why the
smooth Suzuki V-Strom 1000 motor is a winner.
4. The 2018 Suzuki V-Strom 1000 and 1000XT are quite
close. The big difference is that the 1000XT gets wire-spoked
dual-ridge tubeless rims, with the 1000 getting the typical
cast aluminum wheels (which are actually a bit lighter). The
1000XT also get tapered aluminum bars, compared to the
consistent 7/8-inch bars on the standard 1000.
5. Both V-Strom 1000s get a bit more aggressive adventureready
rubber. Having said that, riding a V-Strom 1000 in
the dirt is still a challenge, even with the Bridgestone Battle
Wing tires. The bike is fine on a hard dirt road, but the
handling and suspension aren’t ready for hard pounding or
48 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
GSX250R | GSX-R1000 | DL650 | DL1000 | SV650
The 17-/19-inch wheel combination allows you to
choose tyres that suit your needs, though dirt-road
riders will want the 1000XT due to its wire-spoked
wheels and tapered bars. Both the standard V-Strom
1000 and the 1000XT get a lower cowl, making them
more suitable for gravel roads where you want to
protect the engine’s soft underbelly.
6. Consider the 2018 Suzuki V-Strom 1000 bikes to be
sport-tourers with benefits. You can tour the world, and
you aren’t restricted to paved roads. You’ll want to stick
to pavement for most of your riding, but it’s always nice
to have options.
7. A new fairing and windscreen are solid improvements
in air management. New this year is a taller windscreen
that allows you to easily adjust it to any of three angles.
I liked the swept back position for most riding, though
higher speed or rain may make the forward position
tempting. There’s also height adjustment that requires
an Allen wrench. Really, picking the right position is
about your height and wind-protection preferences.
The fairing is also new, and it keeps things quieter and
more stable. There is definitely less buffeting and more
protection than before—a nice improvement that means
you can ride longer with reduced fatigue.
8. Traction control returns, but there’s still no cruise
control. We are big fans of Suzuki’s easily adjusted
three-position (high, low, and off) traction control. It’s
not an intrusive system, though you can turn it off if
you want to do wheelies. Low intervention is a good
default position, with high ready for rain. Off-roaders
can go with no traction control, though I liked the highsensitivity
option on the hard-pack dirt roads and the
street-friendly Bridgestones—it’s definitely a taste thing.
9. Touring riders will love the new mounting system
for luggage. Putting bags on V-Stroms was a hassle
in the past. Now, Suzuki has a saddlebag mounting
system that is common to all 1000 and 650 flavours.
This makes life easier for the consumer, dealer, and
aftermarket purveyor of accessories. We’ll check that
out when we get the bikes.
10. The chassis and suspension are unchanged. The
V-Strom 1000 had already established itself as having
predictably neutral handling and suspension that was
highly capable on paved routes of all types, while being
acceptable on well-groomed dirt roads. The ergonomics
remain fantastic, and it is no problem to go through the
20 litre fuel tank.
11. It’s a better Suzuki V-Strom 1000 and 1000XT for
2018. Although most of the improvements are difficult
for the rider to feel, the increased safety of expanded
electronic riding aids are always an enhancement.
The new tyres and the XT’s wire-spoked wheels are
an upgrade, as is the updated plastic. Rather than
reinventing the V-Strom 1000s for 2018, Suzuki wisely
settled for refining the adventure-touring litre-bikes.
Get to your local Suzuki dealer for more details...
50 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
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The origin of power
b a s e f i t C O R E T R A I N I N G
“You are only as powerful or as quick as your core is both strong and stable”
pertaining to ‘core strength’ is
extremely beneficial to dirt bike
riders. A strong core is imperative
to maximising your power output,
while giving you the stability
to perform complex athletic
movements over difficult terrain,
which requires coordination,
balance, and technical skill.
The core of the body in broad
strokes is your midsection, front
back and sides. The muscles
involved are responsible for
stabilizing the spine and pelvis as
well as generating and transferring
energy from the centre of the body
to its extremities. It’s this transfer
of energy which is the key to your
The problem with most fitness
training programs are that they
place to much emphasis on other
muscle groups. When the core is
weak relative to the body, the rider
becomes accustomed to overusing
other muscle groups to produce
the required force when riding.
Generally, this puts more strain
on the muscles further down the
extremities in order to generate
energy, and on the joints to transfer
it, such as the shoulders and knees.
Many riders with knee injuries show
weak hip muscles or tight hip flexors,
improperly shifting the load from
the trunk to the knee and anterior
cruciate ligament (ACL) that is prone
to tearing. This is just one reason
Base Fit programs emphasize core
strength which gives our clients
greater stability, controlled body
movement, and proper muscle
recruitment while in action.
Another critical reason we places
emphasis on core strength is that
you are only as powerful or as
quick as your core is both strong
and stable. Your core is what
enables you to start a motion in
your legs and carry it through to
your arms, or vice versa, with the
most efficient transfer of energy
possible. Therefore for optimal
riding performance, you not only
need to include total body strength,
quickness, endurance, etc, but you
need to spend time training your
core with flexion, extension, and
rotational mid-section exercises.
Pay attention to your training and
build a core that will help you excel
in your sport!
The two exercises I have chosen
to illustrate to you in this article
have been designed by Base Fit
specifically for dirt bike riders.
Neither are easy as they require
isometric control while working
though movements which
challenge stability, coordination
and balance as you would when
tackling tricky off camber sections
Caterpillars (pic 1 & 2)
Lie in a side bridge position with
your feet in TRX straps, resting on
one elbow, hips off the floor. While
holding this position bring your leg
which is closest to the floor up to
your chest, the return.
Core Cross Overs (pic 3 & 4)
Lying on your back (preferably on
a bench for added difficulty), with
your legs vertically upright towards
the ceiling. Hold a dumbbell in your
right hand, arm held straight up
above you, palm facing towards
the left. Now drop your right
hand down towards the floor
keeping your arm straight, and
simultaneously lower your legs to
If you have any queries with regards
correct training for dirt bikes or
would like to sign up with Base
Fit training please contact me on
52 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
//SECTOR450 //SECTOR750 //SECTOR1000CREW
R67 500 R195 000
R119 900 R147 500
Andre 082 771 3040 / Sales: Avril 083 284 4201
Technical: Fernando 071 895 9567
54 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
A STONKING GOOD
KTM’s 2017 Adventure Rally
By definition, adventure is an exciting, unusual or
even bold undertaking.
For the first time, KTM invited South Africans to
experience exactly what that’s like at their 2017
Adventure Rally. The annual event was hosted at
Champagne Valley Sports Resort in the majestic
Central Drakensberg last month.
Guests checked in on Thursday night and enjoyed a
casual dinner and welcoming ceremony. And then the
action began! Early on Friday morning an orange family
set off in biking paradise for the fun.
Entrants could choose between three skill level routes
– the 300km easy but scenic green route, the 90km
technical and physically demanding red route, or a
tougher 80km black route for the hardcore rider wanting
to put their machines to the test.
Riders experienced open dirt roads, single track and
riverbeds. A few serious climbs were also thrown in the
mix, which had heart rates sky rocketing and took some
sweat to conquer!
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 55
After a long day out in the field, riders were greeted
by pizza truck and beer tent when they arrived back
at the venue. The evening’s festivities included a live
performance by Ballyhoo and prize giving, with the main
prize being a full set of KTM Powerwear kit, Alpinestar
Tech 8 boots and an Airoh helmet. Every rider’s dream!
Saturday started in a similar fashion, but came with a
twist. Riders arrived back slightly earlier for an exciting
Red Bull skills challenge. This was a showstopper and
non-other than the Dakar and off road legend himself,
Alfie Cox, walked away with top honours.
Sharing the terrain with world-class athletes was a huge
highlight of the event. Other racing personalities included
Joey Evans (2017 Dakar finisher), Darryl Curtis (two time
Dakar finisher and Hard Enduro star) and Ross Branch
(multiple National Offroad Champion and 2019 Dakar
With great sadness, the orange mist dispersed on
Sunday after a great experience. Planning stages are
already in place for next year’s rally, with plans foran even
bigger and better mountain adventure.
One parting shot from Alfie Cox: “If all these fire breathing
orange bikes descending on biking paradise in the
Drakensberg mountains doesn’t get your heart racing,
then I’m afraid you need to urgently find an organ donor!”
If you missed out, be sure to sign up in 2018. For more
information visit http://www.ktm-adventure-rally.com/
56 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 57
Brought to you by
Tyre Choice for
With Goldentyre South Africa
Which tyre and mousse combination is best for you?
As a follow up to the informative article that you ran a few
issues back, we thought that this might interest the rock hoppers
and technical riders out there.
Let`s be honest, not everyone can ride like Graham Jarvis or Wade
Young. Many of us are there for the adventure and thrill of competing
and of course to do better than we did last year. But we still
want to use the best equipment to achieve the best advantage we
can. If you are anything like us, you need all the help you can get.
There are so many tyre and mousse options available it makes you
feel like you need an engineering degree to understand them all.
So maybe we can learn from the top riders and look at what the
top guys used at this year`s Erzberg Rodeo.
This year`s winner Alfredo Gomez was on a factory sponsored
His front tyre combo was a Goldentyre 216AA 90/100-21 with a
90/100 G-Mousse. On the rear he used a Goldentyre 216X 140/80-
18, but opted for an undersized 120 X-Mousse that was already
pre ridden. Gomez uses this set up for most of his hard enduro
Graham Jarvis finished second on his factory Husqvarna.
Jarvis also used the Goldentyre 216AA 90/100-21 up front but he
matched it with a 90/90 G- Mousse. He also used the Goldentyre
216X 140/80-18 rear but his Mousse was a modified X-Mousse
that he had also pre- run. He uses an extra rim lock on his rear to
keep the tyre in place.
Another KTM factory rider Cody Webb came in third.
Webb`s front tyre was a Dunlop Geomax 90/90-21 and he used 10
PSI tyre balls instead of a front mousse. On the rear he had a Dunlop
sports 110/100 coupled with a modified and pre run mousse.
South Africa`s own Wade Young finished in 4th place on the factory
Sherco. Young ran a Michelin Comp VI 90/100-21 front combined
with a Mitas EF07 140/80-18 rear. Unfortunately no mousse
information was available.
In 5th place was KTM factory rider Jonny Walker,
Walker chose a Goldentyre 216AA 80/100-21 front with a same
sized G-Mousse. He made a controversial choice of rear tyre
with a Goldentyre 523KX (controversial as this is more usually
suited to MX) He used this with a pre run 120 X Mousse.
The top riders choose different combinations
to suit the surface, conditions
and their specific riding style. Lesotho conditions will be very different
to the typical European forestry terrain so tyre and mousse
choices may be even more tricky.
Marco Caribotti, President of Goldentyre, trainer and close friend
of Graham Jarvis gave us his suggestions for this years Roof of
The front needs to have an oversized rolling diameter to overcome
large rocks and ledges with a good footprint and a strong flexible
sidewall. This will ensure great traction and improved downhill grip
and braking confidence.
- GT216AA 90/100-21 (Fatty) at 12-13 psi
- G-mousse 80/100-21 13 psi or 90/100-21 15 psi
The rear is all about grip which comes from the correct combination
of contact with the road surface and tyre compound. A flexible
sturdy carcass will provide a good foot print but this needs to
be coupled with the correct compound choice to maximise grip.
A further consideration with the typical Roof of Africa surface is
tyre life. A compromise in grip may be required to ensure tyre life is
sufficient to complete each day.
- GT216HBN 140/80-18 or GT369X 110/100-18
- G-mousse 120X pre run if softer pressure required
If the region is dry or experiences light rain, the above recommendations
remain, possibly with a slightly softer rear mousse. If there
is heavy rain along with very low temparatures, below 25° C the
recommendation would be to use a softer compound tyre, like the
GT216X Gummy rear.
Whatever tyre, mousse combination you choose, make sure the
tyre pressure suits the conditions and remember that clutch control
rather than throttle control will improve your traction and tyre life.
See you at The Roof.
Richard Vaughan Goldentyre SA
1st Erzberg Rodeo
Paul Bolton came in 6th on his KTM
On the front he had a Goldentyre 216AA 90/100-21 with a
Mefo MOM Mousse. His rear choice was a Mitas EF07
Double Green and a Mefo 18-1EX Mousse.
We offer free
for all parcels over
Moose gear -20%
LEADING BRANDS AT THE CLICK OF A BUTTON
Pics by Zygmund Brodalka
NATIONAL MX HARRYSMITH RACE REPORT
The sixth round of the Monster Energy
TRP Distributors SA MX National
Championship saw the competitors return
to Holeshot Harries in Harrismith. Despite
some heavy winds the two days before the
event, the sun was out and the weather
played along for a superb race day. The
club did a great job once again hosting
approximately 180 competitors for both
the National and Northern Regions MX
Everyone anticipated excellent racing
and also the possibility of some
championships to be wrapped up but the
event concluded with every single one
of the championships having to wait for
the Round 7 Final at Terra Topia on the
14thOctober. We are in for an incredible
racing spectacle to end off the 2017
In the Premier MX1 class Tintswalo Out
of Africa Yamaha’s David Goosen put
in two solid performances getting a 1-2
for first overall but it was GAC Laser
Ace Sports’ Anthony Raynard that stole
the show in the second heat taking
the 4-1 for the day sealing his second
overall position. Husqvarna Racing’s
Richard van der Westhuizen continued
his consistent racing with a 2-3 for third
overall and despite the intense battles
taking place, Tintswalo Out of Africa’s
Yamaha’s Tristan Purdon has not given up
125cc High School start with 58 Cameron Durow edging infront
of 151 Dalton Venter for the holeshot
Dalton Venter had
weekends of racing
in the Pro Mini’s and
even in the High
50cc Pro points leader
Neil van der vyver
Camden Mc Lellan
on the way to yet
Zambian laides pilot
MX 1 ,the final will
make for a great
racing between the
top 3, meaning the
still wide open
Team mates Tiegen Reed 24 and Kyla Raaff 22 side by side in
the Ladies cless
KOM MAAK N DRAAI,ONS PRAAT OOK ENGELS
his fight and retains his points lead going
into the final round after a 3-4 for fourth
overall for the day. This leaves the points
standings close enough that spectators
are guaranteed one of the most intense
battles for a Premier Championship we
have seen in years at the final in October.
In the Premier MX2 class, the day
belonged to GAC Laser Ace Sports’
Anthony Raynard, crowning off a
memorable racing day for him as he took
a 1-2 for first overall with Tintswalo Out
Proudly Brought to you by:
of Africa Yamaha’s David Goosen taking
a consistent 2-3 for second overall and
retaining the points lead. We saw Red
Bull KTM’s Kerim Fitz-Gerald win back
a third overall after a 7-1 performance,
ending the day with a great finish after a
tough start to the day. Many commented
that the racing in this class was the best
they had seen all year with the top 4
riders within a bike length of each other.
Undoubtedly this is another class that will
not disappoint at Terra Topia.
2017 SA Motocross Nationals
Holeshot Harry’s Results
1st David Goosen
2nd Anthony Raynard
3rd Richard van der Westhuizen
1st Anthony Raynard
2nd David Goosen
3rd Kerim Fitz-Gerald
1st Ian Topliss
2nd Brett Bircher
3rd Kevin Moran
Joshua Mlimi at the
start of MX 2
125 High School
1st Cameron Durow
2nd Regan Wasmuth
3rd Slade Smith
1st Leah Heygate
2nd Nanda Clowes
3rd Kayla Raaff
Caleb Tennant MX1
Kerim Fitz Gerlad
on the gas
1st Camden Mc Lellan
2nd Davin Cocker
3rd Miguel de Waal
1st Hayden Tully
2nd Blake Young
3rd Dylan Kirk
Richie van Der
Westhuizen railing the
loose soil of Holeshot
Harry’s and on his way
to the MXon with Kerim
Fitz Gerlad and joined
by Neville Bradshaw in
1st Daiyaan Manuel
2nd Troy Muraour
3rd Lucca Mynhardt
Ross Branch took one
Moto Holeshot in MX 1
Start of MX 1
1st Neil van der Vyver
2nd Jordan van Wyk
3rd Liam Botha
Anthony Raynard and Richie van der Westhuizen
batteling it from the gate drop to the finnish
Willow Rock Shopping Centre, Solomon Mahlangu Drive, Equestria,
Pretoria East LANDLINE: 012 111 0190 / 012 809 1670
Honda Quest True Adventure 2017
We first heard about this initiative from Honda at the launch of the little CRF250 rally.
We were so keen to participate, but woefully, getting magazines out sometimes takes
precedence. We’ve been watching it all with great interest and is looks as though it was
an enormous success. Here is what it was like and what it’s all about.
What is Quest?
A 2500 km adventure biking expedition that took 20 finalists
through the Namibian Wilderness, each geared with a Honda
CRF1000 L Africa Twin. This 12 day adventure included a variety of
challenges to test perseverance as man and machine teamed up
to take on Africa.
The first Honda Quest:
Ten teams were selected via a process of elimination run through
Honda’s dealer network. The participants all had to qualify at a
Boot Camp run earlier this year.:
Team 1:Johannes Haasbroek, Gerrit Visser
Team 2:Cornelius Nelson, Angus Welch
Team 3: Clinton Pienaar, Andries Haasbroek
Team 4: Charl du Plessis, Barbara Muszynski
Team 5: Glenn Koch, Grant Pentelow
Team 6: Andrew Johnstone, Phillip Groenewald
Team 7: Frederik Dreyer, Marcel Vladar
Team 8: Charl Potgieter, Hennie
Team 9: Pieter Lourens, Francois
Team 10: Gerrit du Toit, Kobus
Here’s a run down of what the event entailed and how it all
By Jaco Kirsten, Media Manager for Specialised Adventures:
The ten two-person teams for Honda Quest 2017 were announced
around the campfire at the foot of the majestic Spitzkoppe
mountains. The following day, they kitted up and headed north for
Palmwag in the heart of the Damaraland.
This was their first day of riding together as team mates. While the
ride wasn’t technically that hard, the 350km of dirt road was in a
terrible state, with serious corrugations, making for a very trying
62 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 6 3
The biggest challenge was the dust, which made for
extremely taxing conditions with visibility sometimes down
to 30 metres. Added to that was the hazard of foreign
tourists used to driving on the right side of the road,
creating dangerous situations for all in involved.
The convoy suffered two punctures, which were a direct
result of the bad road surface. The competitors also came
to the rescue of two Dutch tourists who were stranded
in the middle of nowhere with their rental car with two
The Quest convoy eventually settled down in the camp at
Palmwag, serviced their motorcycles and support vehicles.
They also continued with their daily routine of individual
competitors having to give presentations to the rest of the
group about African subjects they were briefed on before
the start of Quest.
Things did not get any easier as contestants battle soaring
temperatures and team dynamics are being tested. The
adventurers have been practicing their mental toughness
techniques, battling to stay focused rather than being
distracted by negative thoughts and of course, dust! The
nature of Honda Quest, , is that you’re not in this alone,
and if you play as a team, then the attitudes of your team
mate can be just as important as your own.
Get to know the two-person teams and see how they cope
with harsh elements and survive punctures all in a day.
When the Honda Quest convoy left Opuwo, the capital of
Namibia’s Kaokoland area at 09:00 with the mercury already
at 29? C, everyone suspected that the 225km ride from
Opuwo to Epupa Falls was going to be quite a challenge.
Thanks to fairly open terrain, the first 130km to
Swartbooisdrif was relatively easy going. After a quick
stop at the memorial for the Dorsland Trekkers - the hardy
group of pioneers that trekked to Angola and back at the
beginning of the previous century - the riders donned their
riding gear and headed for the Kunene River, the border
between Namibia and Angola.
64 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
Here they turned left on a trail that headed
westwards and had to negotiate numerous
dry riverbed crossings, steep climbs
and descents - and the all-too-normal
rocks that never ceased to threaten the
It soon became apparent that this 95km
section was going to require huge amounts
of skill, concentration - and hydration -
because the different riders’ CRF 1000 L
Africa Twins on-board computers indicated
temperatures of anything between 41 and
47 degrees Celsius!
The teams had to concentrate hard to
maintain the proper following distances in
the scorching, dusty conditions, as well as
having to negotiate the obstacles and try
to maintain enough speed to be able to
cool down. Eventually, a tired and sweaty
group of riders rode into the tiny settlement
of Epupa Falls, where they got rid of their
riding gear and had the opportunity to
marvel at the sights and sound of the
waterfall, an oasis in an otherwise barren
and unforgiving terrain.
The “whoooooooooaaaaah!” that Glenn
Koch, one of the competitors screamed
from the top of his lungs when he
succeeded in riding up a particularly steep,
rocky climb, best summed up today’s riding.
When the Honda Quest competitors
left Epupa Falls at 07:00 after the rider’s
briefing they all had a swarm of butterflies
in the stomach, because what lay ahead
was undoubtedly the toughest riding of the
whole event: The 73km from Okangwati to
the Van Zyl’s Pass community camp.
Their excitement was warranted, because
soon after turning west from Okangwati,
the first riders succumbed to the thick
sandy tracks and regular river crossings.
But the real action still lay ahead. Because
for a couple of kilometres the riders would
have to negotiate extremely rocky and
uneven climbs and descends.
When one of the lead bike instructors’
voice crackled over the radio: “The gala
has just started.” everyone in the support
convoy knew that the moment of reckoning
Over the next few hours they had to
tackle rocky trails, helping one another
up and down these daunting obstacles,
picking up fellow riders and assisting with
At exactly 15:45 the group rolled into the
Van Zyl’s Community Camp, sweaty, dirty
and tired. But they were in very high spirits,
because never before has a group of 22 big
bore adventure bikes managed to complete
this hazardous journey…
The Honda Quest managed to do what
few others have done: Not only did they
conquer the notoriously difficult Van Zyl’s
Pass, but they did it as a group of 22 riders
on big adventure bikes suffering no damage
or injury to anyone.
When the group departed at the Van Zyl’s
Pass Community Camp, little did they know
exactly how hard it was going to be. After
all, they thought that the previous day’s ride
from Okangwati to the camp was going
to be the hardest of the trip. It turned out
that the organisers had another surprise in
stall for the riders as the approach to Van
Zyl’s Pass turned out to be just as hard as
anything they experienced the previous day.
Then they had to tackle the nerve-wracking
descend down the notorious steps at
the top of the pass. However, team work
and discipline saw to it that all 22 riders
and bikes made it through without any
problems. Once they arrived at the bottom
of the pass and headed out into the
Marienfluss, there were more trails waiting
as they once again had to contend with
challenging sandy conditions.
Turning south they headed for the famous
Rooidrom beacon in the middle of
nowhere, before heading for the overnight
stop at Marble Camp in the Orupembe
But there was one final surprise in store:
Joubert Pass. The steep, loose rocky climb
presented a huge challenge to everyone,
but finally everyone made it and headed for
the night’s camp.
It took the riders almost nine hours to
complete a mere 62 km. Their tired, but
happy faces confirmed just what they
Day 7, sandy riverbeds…
After the elation of having conquered the
notorious Van Zyl’s Pass – including the
distinction of Barbara Muszynski being the
first female ever to do it on a big adventure
bike – the Honda Quest competitors
thought that it would be a rather easy day’s
ride. Unfortunately for them the organisers
had different plans.
At first, they rode down the Otjiha Plains
and marvelled at the wide-open expanses
DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017 65
opening up to the south of them. But when they reached
the Khumib riverbed, things got serious. Here the thick
sand proved many rider’s undoing, especially with
temperatures in the high 30s. In fact, the sand was so
challenging that the organisers gave the group the option
of riding next to the riverbed for some distance until
there was no other option but to get back down into the
riverbed as this was the only route south.
After nearly 40km of sandy riverbed riding they were
finally able to exit the river and turn left towards the
southeast in order to reach Puros, where they would stay
for the next two days.
The time would be used to rest, do some washing and
perform important vehicle maintenance on their Africa
Twins, as well as on the trusted fleet of convoy vehicles
that transport the support staff, tools, food and precious
extra fuel for the whole group. By now the contestants
were digging deep, having spent seven days in the
saddle, of which the last three were enormously taxing.
But more importantly, the organisers were starting to get
a better picture of who the real contenders are to win the
inaugural Honda Quest.
After having spent seven days in the saddle, of which the
last three were enormously taxing physically, the Honda
Quest competitors spent two days in Puros.
The rest days ended with an exercise called Solitude
where the competitors were made to park their Africa
Twins in different, remote locations in the desert. They
then had to spend an hour in total solitude before they
were allowed contact with anyone else. They didn’t
know beforehand how long the exercise would last and
after having to spend more than a week with 19 other
competitors, many found the solitude both overwhelming
Day 9, Elephants and rough roads…
When they started their engines on Day Nine, the
excitement was palpable. For this day meant a trip
down the Puros river canyon – and the possibility of
After a thorough safety briefing the convoy of competitors
set off, led by a guide vehicle who scouted for a particular
female and her calf who were spotted heading down the
canyon just a day earlier. Elephants are very protective of
their young, creating a serious safety risk for those who
inadvertently stumble into these magnificent animals.
After eight kilometres of hard sand riding, combined with
numerous little river crossings, the convoy stopped when
the elephant and her a calf was spotted in the company of
an aggressive male. In the interest of safety, the decision
was made to turn back to Puros, from where the teams
would ride south towards Palmwag. But first they had to
retrace their steps back through up the riverbed, now a
churned up mass of deep, soft sand.
To describe the D3707 road heading south through
the Giribes Plains towards Fort Sesfontein merely as
“corrugated” would be like describing that Mike Tyson
as “not feminine”. Because few actual off-road sections
are harder on vehicles and riders than this particular
107km stretch of “road”. Predictably enough, it caused
havoc with tyres, with the riders suffering no less than six
66 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
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just before sunset, the Honda Quest group rode
into the campsite at Palmwag, to be informed
that an elephant had just walked through their
campsite. The footprints were clearly visible and if
that wasn’t enough, the group also noticed large
lion footprints in and around the campsite.
After unloading the gear and setting up camp,
the competitors and crew sat down for the usual
night-time routine of presentations. Prior to Honda
Quest every competitor was given a subject on
the African continent they had to prepare and do
a presentation on. Tonight would be no different.
Except that everyone would also keep their eyes
and ears open for night time visitors…
Honda Quest 2017: Here’s the winning team!
Twelve days after leaving Windhoek, the capital of
Namibia, the Honda Quest convoy finally arrived
back at their starting point, tired, happy, content
and richer for the experience.
The Honda Quest did not aim to pick purely the
most skilled riders, but instead set out to pick
the most versatile team. They were looking for
people who showed a keen sense of adventure
and who were curious about their surroundings.
They also wanted to know who would get along
with their fellow competitors and could contribute
to team spirit, as well as taking the initiative with
Looking back, there were some interesting
characters. Johannes Haasbroek, a Namibian
local with a huge beard and a collection of never
ending stories, always elicited a chuckle or two
from his fellow competitors. Then there was Glenn
Koch who was able to fix any flat tyre in a record
time, even if the actual rider of the bike sometimes
objected! Barbara Muszynski, the lone female
competitor, impressed everyone with her positive
approach and managed to silence quite a few
doubters in the process. And then there was Grant
Pentalow who, despite taking quite a few tumbles
in the deep sand, never once considered giving
up, earning him the nickname of “the Terminator”.
Andrew Johnstone amused people with his
psychological profiling of his fellow competitors.
After putting their heads together, comparing
points and interviewing everyone a couple of
times, the instructors and organisers of Honda
Quest declared Charl Potgieter from Pretoria and
Hennie “Tyres” van Heerden from Victoria-West
as the winners. They impressed everyone with
their calm, yet enthusiastic approach, as well
as the thorough way in which they approached
the special tasks. Both will be excellent brand
ambassadors for the Honda CRF 1000 L Africa
Twin, both becoming proud owners of the
motorcycles on which they competed.
The winners of the Quest Spirit Award are Grant
Pentalow and Glenn Koch. They were always in
good spirits, no matter how tough the conditions,
and remained loyal and supportive teammates
right to the very end.
So how cool is that?
See you there next year?
Charl Potgieter from Pretoria and
Hennie “Tyres” van Heerden from
68 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
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TRIAL’S BIKE RIDING
what’s the all the fuss about?
Our Cape Town Correspondent
(Howzaat for Fancy ne’?) Renette Rauch
heads out to see whats happening in the
world of trials riding daar onder in die
If you are in the Cape and you have
something going on that is of interest,
give us a shout - we’ll see if she can get
along to cover...
I had the pleasure of attending the
monthly Cape Trials Bike competition
at Welgelegen, Kuils River and taking
some photographs. Not only was the
course beautifully set up to hold the most
challenges for the riders, but it had rained
in the morning, so the course was muddy
and the rocks had a layer of clay on to test
their skills to the utmost.
The Origin of Trials Bikes.
Brian Barson, Expert rider from the Cape
Trials Club says that Trials riding originated
during last century from British Motorcycle
manufacturers testing their new production
bikes’ performance on steep slopes. The
test riders enjoyed this so much that they
developed a sport from it called Observed
Trials riding, also called Foot -Ups. This
involved riding though rivers, up and down
steep hills and over obstacles by executing
tight, controlled turns on the bikes without
putting a foot down.
Initially the Trials bikes were 4 stroke 500
CC engines, but they have evolved into
smaller, leaner machines, typically a 2
stroke 250 CC engine weighing 70 kg or
less making them lighter than most riders
and thus easier to control than other
bikes. The bikes have 6 gears, three very
low gears situated close together and the
rest taller for riding between sections. The
bottom end power and torque ensures
the tracks are not damaged and they are
quiet and environmentally friendly bikes.
The bikes’ soft tyres and suspension help
to soak up the bumps. The engine is very
small and there is no seat. There are also
smaller bikes for children who love to ride
with their parents .
How to get started:
Trials bikes are relatively cheap to pick
up second hand and with minimal gear
requirements one can start attending
weekly practice at any of the four major
centres in Gauteng , Kwa Zulu Natal , East
London or Cape Town as well as start
participating in the monthly competitions
typically held from March to October to
70 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
avoid the heat . It doesn’t matter how old
you are , the youngest riders can barely
walk and the older riders are pushing 80.
Brian Barson is 68 and has been riding
since 1970. It is also a fantastic family
sport . Mark Shearer , age 65 rides with
his grandson , Stephen Shearer , age 15 ,
both very competent riders who ride in the
Intermediate Class. Riding the more casual
children’s section were Jack and Jamie
who tagged along with their dad , Shaun
Matthews, as well as Ddohu , age 12, who
comes along with her father Eric Pannaye ,
also a Clubman rider like Shaun.
Novice riders start in the Clubmen class,
but ride the same course , just on different
lines and wider lanes . The beauty is that all
the riders first walk the course together in a
group and discuss and plan their lines , so
the newer riders learn from the old hands.
The riders ride the section one at a time
so riders have the opportunity to get input
from more advanced riders. The 8 to 10
sections are ridden 4 times each, so the
riders are able to work on improvements
all the time and correct their faults
After the first round the field is spread and
riders can choose their own sections. I was
fascinated to see so much going on at the
same time. It is not like other bike races
where you only see and talk to the riders at
the finish line . This is very much a social,
interactive sport and it is as challenging as
you want to make it . Yet very safe , due to
the slow riding and one person at a time
riding each section.
Kobus Potgieter, aka Superman , Amageza
veteran and Dakar 2016 finisher says
when he first started riding Trials bikes
a year ago, he had to go back to basics
and practice throttle and clutch control,
braking , balancing on the bike, and
coordinating everything with the terrain you
encounter. He says that riders often pick
up errors along the way and use speed
and momentum to hide their faults. Trials
Riders have no such luxury ,because of
their slow speeds, but have to rely purely
on their skills. He says that he loves that
there is so much scope for bettering
your skills in Trials riding, as you receive
immediate feedback every time you ride.
He also noted how cheap the sport is and
very low maintenance on the bikes that you
can keep going forever and his back tyre
has lasted him this whole year. Petrol is
also cheap because of the small area you
ride in .
The great thing for new riders is that it
doesn’t matter how old your bike is you
can start participating in competitions
immediately. There are at least four
categories of riders, from Novice riders ,
Clubman class, Intermediate, Experts and
Masters. The Trials Clubs welcome new
riders and it is so easy to slot in.
The scoring system is very easy . You get
penalties and for putting a foot down once
, you get penalized one point, and up to
three points for thee dabs of more . You get
a 5 point fault if you fall, or fail to finish . The
rider with the least points wins.
Mostly it is good fun and not that
competitive, the focus is on selfimprovement
and not showing off . Some
of our local men are really good like Master
rider Michael Krause riding over big
obstacles such as cars and big boulders
with ease .
Anyone can do it , you don’t have to
wheelie the 60 km around The Isle of Man
like Dougie Lampkin or ride up a tree or
house like Toni Bou or hop from rock to
rock like Laia Sanz , you can enjoy it all
the same . Even if you are a complete
novice , you can and will improve on your
general bike riding skills while still having
a lot of fun in beautiful surroundings with a
fantastic group of supportive riders .
Trials riding is increasing in popularity in
South Africa and once the bug has bitten
many riders never stop, but keep coming
back for more.
Go to one of the monthly competitions
in your area and see what the fuss is all
about . They welcome new riders , and also
spectators and Observers to help score.
This is also the ideal event to sponsor
your Company by claiming one of the
sections for your banners. Do watch out
particularly for the Nationals events, the
next one is also at the same gorgeous
Vergelegen venue , Kuils River on 16 and
17 September 2017. Take the children with
for a fun day .
Check out the Cape website at capetrials.
co.za or the Gauteng website at nrtc.co.za
for more details .
Happy Trials Riding .
72 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
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The guys from Dirt And Trail Magazine and
Dirt Maniacs are hosting a pillion friendly
adventure bike weekend with a difference:
Come and learn a little bit about South
Africa’s history - and have a great ride.
All brands are welcome! Trax KTM will be
along with some demo bikes for you to try
Thursday 9th November Wakkerstroom.
Arrive in the afternoon and settle in.
Braai at Weavers Country Estate.
On Friday we’ll visit loads of battlefield
Genl PJ Joubert gravesite, Gert vd
Westhuizen Boer War museum, Potters
Hill, Majuba battle site, Visit Potters
Hill gravesite, O’ Neil’s Cottage, Mount
Prospect and Genl Colley’s grave and back
via Zaaihoek Dam.
Total distance for
the day: 250 -
Dinner, buffet style.
Battle of Kambula
site visit, Battle of
Ntombi, and up to
for lunch. This was
the post war Magistrate Court where some
War criminals were tried.
We’ll visit a point overlooking the Pongola
Valley where the Zulus clashed and 30
000 men died between sunrise and sunset.
Jantjieshoek Pass. We will split in 2 groups
here. The braver ones will take a “technical
route” back to Wakkerstroom.
• The alternative is a slightly longer but
easier route back to Wakkerstroom.
Evening braai, slide-show, prize giving.
Total Distance: 360km and 380km.
Sunday 12th November
Ride to the top of Ossewa Mountain.
• Coffee and tea on Scotch Hill
• Visit Anglo-Boer War gravesite in
Head for home.
All brands welcome. for details:
COMPETITION TIME! Win a MOTUL Hamper
For free and Niks and Gratis!
All you have to do is send us your MOTUL Moment.
Wearing a MOTUL tee or topping up with Motul oils or Lubing
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Entries to email@example.com
Title MOTUL Moment.
We’ll publish your pic and the winning shot gets a hamper*!
*Cap, Keyring, Mousepad, Tee Shirt, Mechanix gloves, Mc
Care kit. Engine oil.
74 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
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BBS D&T Oct '17.indd 1
2017/09/13 2:26 PM
COME COME JOIN JOIN
THE THE FUN FUN
Some pics from the Maluti Mountain Ride, the guys were treated to some awesome trails
with lots of technical for the rock hoppers and smooth flowing stuff for the family riders.
The next events:
Durban 2 JHB is underway as you look at this here mag.
Then Suikerbosrand day ride on Sat the 28th Oct a 100 km route on the outskirts of JHB -
east rand. Always huge fun and - its rained, so its going to be green and beautiful.
The last weekend away for 2017 is to Luneburg *(Natal Spa on the weekend of the 24th Nov)
Always Magic!! mountains, Rivers, Forests and a fantastic family venue. Details and booking
forms go out soon.
In December - The Sunfields ride is on Saturday the 9th November. A great start to the Christmas
The first ride for 2018 (Gulp) in January is the weekend 26th January Waterberg mountain ride,
H a n g i n w i t h t h e o r i g i n a l
We know quite a few fast Dutchmen –
but if you’ve been in racing circles at all
over the last couple of decades, you’ll
know the first that held that title, and that is
Sherco’s Ian Venter.
When we met him for our li’l test on
the two bikes for this issue, we came to
understand just how long this guy has been
around. He’s a wealth of information having
ridden and raced since many of you lot
were still in Bagdad.
He’s now the man tasked with running
the Sherco South Africa team.
It’s a great team this year with “Wadeo”
Wade Young doing his bit for the brand
locally at National Enduro level and abroad
at all of the red Bull Extreme events. Tim
Young is flying the flag in OR1 and Enduro.
Scott Woods is running with the seniors
in Enduro. Justin Broughton is running
Offroad and Enduro in Masters, Eduan
Bester is running in National enduro – and
Nardus Rabe is competing in the high
School class Offroad and GXCC.
Ian still races – well everything. Wherever
a Sherco is needed for points, you’ll find
Ian dicing against the youngsters… in fact
in his last OR1 outing he came in 5th… Not
too shabby for a bullet ne’?
He appears to be quite an unassuming
guy, he casually pointed us towards
the bikes, and shared a bucketload of
knowledge that can only be gleaned from
years in the saddle. We found out a bit
more about him…
To be fair he could not remember all of
the exact details – it’s been a great career
so far, but here is the gist of it – and proof
that motorcycles do keep you young!
Started racing an air-cooled Red Rocket
80 in 1982,.
· His first MX race was at Mahem.
· He moved to Yamaha and raced under
Bobby Scott Motorcycles. In between he
started flat tracking with Brad Annasis at
Acacia and Corobrick.
· In ’86, he started racing for Russel
Campbell in the support MX team.
· In ’89, he was invited to ride with team
Green and went to his first fun enduro with
Willie Ireland at Rhino park. The following
weekend he was entered into the Sun City
400, he did one lap and called it quits –
hated life. What’s with all the mud and the
rocks? Kawasaki’s John Moore asked him
why he was loafing and told him to get
going again – he was ahead of all of the
official Kawasaki riders… He came 4th in
the 200 class. And that was the start – an
MX boy was converted to enduro. He
earned a place on team Green no bike
sponsorship – but he raced under their
· When Ralph Pitchford joined Pro
Action, he poached Ian to race a KTM125
in the support class. He was up against the
likes of Willie Ireland, Jeremy Davis, and
Hilton Beatty, the man who started parts
Unlimited in the USA.
· In ’92 he won the regional
· In ’93 he went back to Yamaha with
78 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
Russel Campbell Yamaha.
· In ’94 he moved to Honda with Lesotho
Office Equipment on a CR125.
· At the end of ’94, Butch from KTM
poached him back.
· In 95 he got a full ride with Team Green
hardcore/No fear on a KDX 200. 3rd overall
for the year. At that time he was up against
guys like Darryl Curtis, Brian Bontekoning
and Richard Manning.
· In ’97 it all stopped when Uri Human
was tragically killed during a race….
· In 2010 he was approached – again by
Pro Action to run the – wait for it – Beta
team. That lasted 8 months until KTM
South Africa took over the dealership. He
was back on KTM as team manager.
· From there Ian has gone on to run
teams for RAD KTM, The Roost and for
Centurion. While at centurion, they won
4 high school championships, 2 national
enduro champs, 2 Offroad champs, and a
Last Year, Ian was approached by Sherco
– that little brand is determined to make an
impact. Currently Wade young is leading
the national Enduro championship as well
as the global Red Bull Extreme series.
Watch this space… he’s still very fast –
soon at a race near you!
80 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE OCTOBER 2017
WE BUY AND
Cnr. Breed & Taaifontein Road,
Tel. 012 548 0040/45
Grant Scott 082 706 0070
GPS - S25’ 40.724’
E 028’ 16.326’
Henderson Racing Products - 011 708 5905
Available at selected dealers nationwide, excluding Full Throttle.