1712 DT final.compressed

RobRidefast

Dirt and Trail magazine December 2017

Ride More Stress Less

www.dirtandtrailmag.com

DECEMBER 2017

WADE YOUNG

& SHERCO

WIN 50TH ROOF!

Pic by Action In Motion

KTM’S NEW 790 R YAMAHA’S T700 FOUR GREAT BETA’S NEW

ADVENTURE CONCEPT ADVENTURES 125 SCREAMER

DECEMBER 2017 RSA R29.50

17012

9 771815 337001


Official Dealer

OWN A SCHUBERTH

FROM ONLY R2 500!

STOCK IS LIMITED SO HURRY! COLOURS MAY VARY ACCORDING TO STOCK AVAILABILITY

CHRISTMAS STOCKING SPECIALS

E&OE

(t) 011 251 4000

(e) info@linexyamaha.co.za

Cnr. Malibongwe Drive & Tungsten Road

Strydom Commercial Park, Randburg

www.linexyamaha.co.za


Photo Credit: Doc Weedon

Blake Baggett

REGINA RX3 Chains, Original Equipment

on KTM, HUSQVARNA, TM... feature the outstanding

SHAPED BUSHING technology which, together with chromized

alloy carbon steel pins and beveled plates, provides best

performance, shock resistance and reduction in wear.

SHAPED BUSHING TECHNOLOGY

PBA DEALER LISTING

GAUTENG

ZEEMANS MOTORCYCLES 011 435 7177

BIKING ACCESSORIES 012 342 7474

FACTORY RACING 011 867 0092

GAME MOTOR SERVICES 011 849 7000

MOTO-MATE RIVONIA 011 234 5275

MOTO-MATE STONERIDGE 011 609 0944

JUST BIKING 016 421 1153

KCR MOTORCYCLE FANATIX 011 975 5545

OFF-ROAD CYCLES 012 333 6443

PRIMROSE MOTORCYCLES 011 828 9091

RANDBURG MOTORCYCLES 011 792 6829

WAYNES HEASMAN RACING 011 763 5824

MPUMALANGA

BIKE CITY 013 244 2143

NELSPRUIT ATV 013 752 2023

NORTHWEST

BIKERS PARADISE 018 297 4700

INSANE BIKERS 014 594 2111

MOTORS @ KLERKSDORP 018 468 1800

WATER RITE MOTORCYCLES 018 771 5050

LIMPOPO

K.R.MOTORCYCLES 015 297 3291

FREESTATE

SALLEYS YAMAHA 051 430 3326

KZN

ROCKET RACING PINETOWN 031 702 2606

ROCKET RACING MARITZBURG 033 264 3240

CYCLE CRAFT 031 337 1716

RBS YAMAHA 031 701 1311

RIDE HIGH WITH YAMAHA 035 789 1851

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PERRY’S M/CYCLES HILLCREST 031 566 7411

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EASTERN CAPE

IMOLA MOTORSPORT 043 722 1157


EDITOR: ROLEY FOLEY

You Better be Good

Sarah and her thirteen-year-old sister had been

fi ghting a lot this year. This happens when you

combine a headstrong two-year-old, who is sure

she is always right, with a young adolescent.

Sarah’s parents, trying to take advantage of her

newfound interest in Santa Claus, reminded the

two-year-old that Santa was watching and doesn’t

like it when children fi ght. This had little impact.

“I’ll just have to tell Santa about your misbehavior,”

the mother said as she picked up the phone and

dialed. Sarah’s eyes grew big as her mother asked

“Mrs. Claus” (really Sarah’s aunt; Santa’s real

line was busy) if she could put Santa on the line.

Sarah’s mouth dropped open as Mom described

to Santa (Sarah’s uncle) how the two-year-old was

acting. But, when Mom said that Santa wanted to

talk to her, she reluctantly took the phone.

Santa, in a deepened voice, explained to her how

there would be no presents Christmas morning to

children who fought with their sisters. He would

be watching, and he expected things to be better

from now on.

Sarah, now even more wide eyed, solemnly

nodded to each of Santa’s remarks and silently

hung the phone up when he was done. After a

long moment, Mom (holding in her chuckles at

being so clever) asked, “What did Santa say to

you, dear?”

In almost a whisper, Sarah sadly but matter-offactly

stated, “Santa said he won’t be bringing

toys to my sister this year.”

Have a marvelous Christmas break guys - see you

out on the trails.

CONTENTS: DECEMBER 2017

THE TEAM:

EDITOR:

Glenn Foley

foleyg@mweb.co.za

DESIGN:

Rob Portman

rob@ridefast.co.za

ADVERTISING:

Sinead Foley

foleyg@mweb.co.za

Kyle Lawrenson

lawrensonk@mweb.co.za

ACCOUNTS &

SUBSCRIPTIONS:

Anette

anette.acc@mweb.co.za

Office no (011) 979-5035

(011) 979-0053

CONTRIBUTORS:

Kurt Beine

Richard Sutherland

Zygmund Brodalka

Byron Rudman

Sean Hendley

Tristan Foley

Mike Wessels

Dries vd Walt

12: NEW BIKES: 2018 BIKES REVEALED

24: BIG TEST: 4 GREAT ADVENTURE BIKES

46: FEATURE: 2017 MOTUL ROOF OF AFRICA

60: RACING: NATIONAL OFFROAD

TO SUBSCRIBE

CALL 011 979 5035 OR EMAIL

anette.acc@mweb.co.za

Digital or hard copy.

64: FEATURE: LADIES GS

70: TESTED: 2018 KTM’S WITH TRAX

4 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


Piston and Gasket Sets

Cranks, Conrods and Camshafts

Cylinder Kits, Rebores, Main Bearings and Clutch Plates

VALVES,STEM SEALS AND SPRINGS

Email:G124@mweb.co.za

no 4 Fifth avenue

Northmead

Benoni

011 425 1081/4


ought to you by

New life at Clearwater BMW

The Impressive Clearwater Motorrad near

Roodepoort has been in a bit of a state of flux for the

last few months. The store has new owners now –

and Motorrad man Craig Jones has brought in some

very experienced people to run the show.

Richard Friend and Jo Rust are on the showroom

floor waiting to sell you your next baby. There is

always lekker coffee, clean used BMW’s and, of

course always the latest machinery on the floor. Full

sworkshop and service centre – and the accessory

section is filling up nicely.

Clearwater Motors c/o Hendrik Potgieter and Falls

Road, Little Falls ext 6

Phone: 011 761 3500

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 - 012 342 7474

SCOOTER

Scott Dual Raid Adventure gear

These suits are available in ladies and gents cuts – and

they mean business.

Packed with nifty, practical features and they have a

distinctly off-road feel. They veer on the lightweight,

breathable and functional side over other thick and heavy

adventure suits. Ideally suited to hot SA weather riding

with a quality ventilation system. Vents are peppered

on the legs, back, chest and arms. The sleeves are

also detachable. Four pockets on the outside, one on

the inside, a map pocket and an additional transparent

sleeve pocket also come in handy. Ideal jacket for proper

adventure riders who love off-roading. And we believe that

this lot make suits for some of the OEM guys out there –

so they do know what they are up to.

Available at selected dealers.

Scott-sports.com/za/en for your dealer

6 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017

Vision racing opens in

Pomona, Kempton Park:

Under the beady eye of all rouind Mr nice guy

and MX man Grant Foley (The name says it

all). Grant runs the vision racing MX team with

riders from all over Africa. He has opened up a

race shop offering bike services, race prep and

selected parts and accessories.

(071) 536-5512

SBS distributed by

WWW.BIKEWISE.CO.ZA


Photo: R. Schedl

BUILT TO

CONQUER

KTM 300 EXC TPI

The new KTM 300 EXC TPI sets the benchmark all over again,

as the world’s first 2-stroke enduro bike with TPI (Transfer Port Injection).

Eliminating the need to change jets and thanks to the oil pump,

no more premixing oil either! Improved fuel-combustion means crisper

throttle response at all times and better fuel consumption, for longer days

of hardcore enduro domination.

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.


ought to you by

Fox Legion Gear

With a full line of off-road outerwear, jerseys, pants,

gloves and boots specifi cally designed to conquer

the trails, Legion is ready to begin the journey when

you are. Born on the track and built for the trail, the

all-new Legion pant is derived from their cutting edge

technology 360 MX pant chassis. With the use of

TruMotion 4-way stretch and durable Cordura fabrics,

the entire Legion range provides a balance of function,

durability and versatility.

“Partnering with a brand like Cordura ensures

the Legion line would exceed the demands of

off-road.” said Mark Finley, Global MX Category

Director. “Trusted for over 30 years, Cordura fabrics

are known for their combination of durability, versatility

and reliability. The combination of Fox’s forward

thinking design and engineering and Cordura’s

industry leading fabric development is the perfect

partnership to deliver the best product to market.”

The 2017 Fox Legion off-road product line is available

today worldwide. For more information check out a

local authorized Fox dealer or Foxracing.com.

HiFlo Filters from Trickbitz

All of the different brands of oil and air filters can get

confusing. We’ve used these often without any issue.

The Hiflofiltro-Thai Yang Kitpaisan factory was

founded in 1955 and has been manufacturing filters

for the OEM motor industry since 1963. With the

experience of more than four decades, continuous

research and development and modern production

facilities, we manufacture some of the best quality

filters in the world. Every oil filter goes through 16

individual quality control checks before it is ready to

leave the factory. The whole manufacturing process,

including the checking of raw materials, individual

filter testing, is regularly audited and verified

independently by TÜV SÜD. There are applications

for almost every motorcycle, scooter, and ATV that

uses an oil filter.

Imported by trickbitz – www.trickbitz.co.za or your

nearest dealer.

Great stocking fillers

With Christmas around the corner – we’ve gathered a few

bits and bobs that we’ve used through the year – that you

can grab for your nearest and dearest:

The GIVI GPS/Smartphone holder

We’ve had one on our bike for almost 2 years now. This is one of the

most practical things that we’ve ever bought. No really! It has a little

lip that shades the device for

easy reading – and it has a

universal mounting mechanism

that it fits virtually any bar. If

you don’t have a GPS, most

smartphones fit perfectly.

About R800.00

www.dmd.co.za for your

nearest stockist.

8 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017

Cycra Handguards

Go and get the Mrs a set of some

of the toughest handguards on the

planet. Available in all sorts of funky

colours to match the bike.

At dealers all over.

SBS distributed by

WWW.BIKEWISE.CO.ZA


STRIKE250 //STRIKE1000

//SECTOR450 //SECTOR750 //SECTOR1000CREW

R67 500 R195 000

R119 900 R147 500

R225 000

WWW.HISUN.CO.ZA

Andre 082 771 3040 / Sales: Avril 083 284 4201

Technical: Fernando 071 895 9567


ought to you by

MotionPro Multitool For

your bumbag… dirtbikes,

quads adventure bikes

We all use them – this is unquestionably one of the

finest lightweight all purpose tools ever designed.

One of these and a leather man will dismantle 80%

of all motorbikes in minutes.

It weighs nothing and replaces Kg’s of other tools.

- Can be used to remove 8, 10, 12 & 14mm bolts,

#2 & #3 Phillips screws,small & medium straightslot

screws and 5 & 6mm Allen bolts

- Includes a 1/4 in. & 3/8 in. socket driver

- 10mm & 12mm 1/4 in. drive sockets included

- Enhance it by adding your own 1/4 in. or 3/8 in.

drive socket attachments

- Includes convenient carrying case

- Hard nickel pewter finish

- Replacement bits available separately

www.desertlizard.co.za for your closest stockist

Talk to each other: The Sena

20S Evo Motorcycle Intercom

Headset for Dual Riders

The 20S EVO Motorcycle Bluetooth

Communication System represents a level of

refinement from the proven market leader, the Sena

20S. An integrated shark fin antenna strengthens

the signal within the specified almost 5km range to

enhance intercom stability.

Stay in contact by calling hands-free on your

Bluetooth phone, rock out to your favorite riding

jams in stereo or listen to voice instructions of GPS

navigators by Bluetooth wirelessly, all the while

having conversations in full duplex with a passenger

or other riders.

www.bikegear.co.za for your nearest stockist

10 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017

You need some bling bars

Renthal uses an exclusive aluminum alloy and

advanced manufacturing processes to produce a full

range of handlebars. This range includes traditional

7/8” diameter handlebars, tapered 1 1/8” braceless

Fatbar handlebars and an exclusive to Renthal 1

1/8” Twinwall handlebar which is a braced handlebar

utilizing two tubes, one within the other. More OEM

manufacturers of off-road motorcycles choose to

equip their models with Renthal handlebars than any

other brand, this includes Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki

and KTM.

www.bikewise.co.za for your closest stockist.

Motul love for your machine:

for all bikes and quads

At dealers all over - rush out – grab some of the good

stuff – pop it under the tree – it compliments Santa’s

outfit and you know that it’s the right thing to do. Your

bike will love you for it.

Motul has established itself as one of the worlds

leading lubrication and all sorts brands. Their product

lineup is quite simply astonishing. Chat to your dealer.

www.ampsa.co.za for your closest stockist.

Spanjaard’s Cleaning Products:

for all bikes and quads

Yup! This full cleaning kit even comes with a bucket

and a nifty sponge and spray attachment so you can

scrub up your bike or bakkie after the ride.

At dealers Nation-wide.

STREET

SBS distributed by

WWW.BIKEWISE.CO.ZA


ZA/EN


NEW BIKES ON THE HORIZON

There’s a lot going on in the world of motorcycles at the moment. Over the next

couple of pages we take a look at some of the bikes we can or could expect soon…

Yamaha’s 07GEN concept

for the old mx racers

Let’s just say that Yamaha’s concepts

are a bit…ambitious. Take the Yamaha

07GEN concept, for example – a

three-wheeler from the Tokyo Motor

Show.

This oddly styled electric threewheeled

motorcycle for urban travel

is an interesting mix of new-world

technology with old-world aesthetics.

It might even be too hippy for the

hippest of hipsters…maybe.

Yamaha simply states the following

about the 07GEN concept:

“The 07GEN brings modern classical

design through stylish forms and high

quality finishes. Encouraging a more

active and confident lifestyle, the user

will grow with the vehicle through

every experience.

Taking the journey slowly, bringing

a sense of excitement to every

destination. Authenticity at the heart

of mobility, 07GEN is a comfortable,

elegant three wheel electric commuter

that supports seniors with a variety of

lifestyles.”

So there is hope – if you are a rusty old

racer – Yamaha still has a bike for you!

Yamaha Ténéré 700 is

still a Prototype - for now

Last year, we were teased with

the Yamaha T7 concept, a

bike we expected to become a

700cc Yamaha Ténéré adventure

machine. A year has passed now,

and finally we can see the new

Yamaha Ténéré 700 at this year’s

EICMA show…or so we thought.

Based on the parallel-twin engine

found in the Yamaha FZ-07,

the Yamaha Ténéré 700 World

Raid promises to bring a potent

middleweight adventure bike to

Yamaha’s dual-sport lineup. But

instead, it is yet another prototype

teaser from Yamaha.

CMON!!! Lets go, we want to ride it!

Yamaha’s excuse for continuing

to tease us with the Ténéré 700

is that it needs to further develop

the machine by testing it on

public roads. Perhaps they are

also weighing up the oppositions

products too?

The Yamaha Ténéré 700 World

Raid looks like a bike we’d really

want to ride, but must still wait for.

Yamaha says that it plans to take

the Ténéré 700 World Raid on a

world tour, on every continent,

both as a way to test the machine,

but also to drum-up interest in the

final production machine.

We look very forward to the final

offering!

Yamaha’s New XT1200ZE Super

Tenere Raid Edition

Have bike, will travel is the message Yamaha

are sending out with the new Super Tenere Raid

Edition. Built to go anywhere with lots of kit.

The Raid Edition expands on the standard model

with lots of accessories including a pair of 37l

aluminium side cases. For increased weather

protection there’s a high screen and wind

deflectors as well as fog lamps for adventures

after dark. To complete the look, it’s also fitted

with carbon side panels and a large side plate that

protects both the sump and the engine cases.

• 1199cc parallel twin

• 110bhp @ 7250rpm

• 845mm seat height

12 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


CASH

4

BIKES

BMW Debuts Revised F750GS &

F850GS Models

The middleweight Adventure segment is

hot right now, with a bevy of models in this

category debuting at this year’s EICMA

show.

For BMW Motorrad, it’s a two-pronged

attack, showing the updated BMW F750GS

and BMW 850GS models.

This space has always been a bit crowded in

the BMW motorcycle lineup, with the F700GS

and F800GS having considerable overlaps.

For 2018, the Germans explain how they see

the F750GS and F850GS as differing.

Accordingly, the BMW F750GS is designed

for riders who prefer a travel enduro that has

a low seat height, good power, and plenty of

bang for the buck.

Conversely, the new BMW F850GS boasts

more power and torque, is more featureheavy,

and is designed with extensive offroading

in mind.

For the 2018 model year, both bikes have

been punched out to 853cc. For the F750GS

Moto Guzzi V85 – A New Enduro

A quirky bike in its own right, the Moto Guzzi

Stelvio had a strange cult following behind

its bulky adventure-touring frame. As such,

it was missed when it disappeared

from Moto Guzzi’s lineup.

Well, now it’s back…

sort of.

this means a very modest power increase to

77hp (up from 75hp), while for the F850GS

the power increase is more substantial, 95hp

(up from 85hp).

Both versions of BMW parallel-twin motor

have a crankshaft with a 90 degree journal

offset, a 270/450 degree firing interval, and

two counterbalance shafts.

Straying from the weirdness of before, the

countershaft sprocket is on the left-hand

side of the bike now, which will make visually

identifying the F750GS and F850GS very

easy (the previous models have their chain

drive on the right-hand side of the bike).

More subtle changes include a revised frame,

which uses the bigger engine as a stressed

part of the chassis. The fuel tank remains

between the seat and the steering head,

behind the cylinder head.

As usual, BMW Motorrad has an à la carte

selection of electronics and features that one

can package their bike with, however ABS,

ASC plus ‘Rain’ and ‘Road’ riding modes are

included as standard.

The following is what’s being called the

Moto Guzzi V85 concept. It’s a loud enduro

model that picks up where the Stelvio left

off, and it also boasts a new 850cc engine

platform from the Italian brand, which with

its 80hp, will sit between the V7/V9 family of

bikes, and the big 1400 cruisers.

Strangely, Moto Guzzi isn’t sharing too

many details about the new V85 concept,

though we know that it will have a fully

digital dash, as well as LED daytime

running lights.

We also know that the chassis

is a completely new design,

made from steel tubes, with

the v-twin engine used as

a stressed member. The

swingarm is made from

aluminum, and it has an

asymmetric design in

order to accommodate

the shaft drive to the

rear wheel.

WE BUY AND

SELL GOOD

CONDITION

SECOND HAND

BIKES

www.bobbyscott.co.za

Cnr. Breed & Taaifontein Road,

Montana, Pretoria.

Tel. 012 548 0040/45

Grant Scott 082 706 0070

grant@bobbyscott.co.za

GPS - S25’ 40.724’

E 028’ 16.326’


Husky News

We have had to wait two years to see it

come into production, but the Husqvarna

Vitpilen 701 will finally be available to

motorcyclists in March 2018. As an added

bonus, the street-going machine stays true

to its concept design, which wowed the

crowd at last year’s Kyalami show.

This year in Milan, the Husqvarna Vitpilen

701 is all the talk at EICMA.

Husqvarna is subtle and sophisticated…

maybe even understated.

It is that understatement that has been

the driving force behind the success

of the brand’s Vitpilen and Svartpilen

motorcycles, with both the “white” and

“black” arrows showing unique design

languages.

For the Husqvarna Vitpilen 701, the 690cc

single-cylinder engine is wrapped in a

modern take on an old design. As such,

this neo café racer makes 75hp, 53 lbs ft of

torque, and is tamed by a traction control

system.

Still, this new Husky must be an odd duck

around the office, as Husqvarna is very

terse on its basic specs and features,

instead focusing on the design of this

café racer. Such is the state of a bike that

sells on emotion and lifestyle, rather than

outright performance.

Is The Husqvarna Svartpilen

701 the Future’s Flat Tracker?

The brand also teased EICMA goers with

its dark side, debuting the Husqvarna

Svartpilen 701 as a concept model.

A neo-retro take on the flat tracker

aesthetic, this “black arrow” street tracker

was designed to boast both minimalistic

and sophisticated lines to motorcyclists

around the world.

Centered around the same 690cc singlecylinder

engine as the Vitpilen 701, the two

bikes are a sort of ying and yang to where

the Husqvarna brand is headed with its

street bikes.

They share common design elements, like

the round headlight, exposed pod air filter,

fuel tank shape, and muted color palette.

Likely to be a 2019 model, the Husqvarna

Svartpilen 701 concept is very close to

what we can expect to see on dealership

floors, if the debuted Vitpilen 701 can be

believed.

14 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


www.husqvarna-motorcycles.com

BUI LT T O GO

A S FA R A S

DAR E T O TA

REVOLUTIONARY 2-STROKE

SMART APPROACH

Delivering unrivalled versatility, the TE 300i harnesses the

perfect balance of power and lightweight agility. With the

addition of electronic fuel injection, the trusted 2-stroke is

exceedingly simple to manage. By ensuring the perfect fuel

delivery for each changing condition, the system delivers

a smooth and precise power delivery every time while also

eliminating the need for jetting changes. By using a seperate

oil tank and pump, 2-stroke oil is delivered independently at

regulated ratios eliminating the need to premix oil and fuel.

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 li

weight – letting you easily explore wherever you choose to go.

TE 300i

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


Say Hello to the Trail-

Shredding KTM 790 Adventure

We were the first to bring you spy photos

of the KTM 790 Adventure R prototype,

but now this 799cc trail-shredding

machine is out in the wild, and we can

share with you more specs, details, and

higher resolution photos.

The first point is the obvious, the KTM 790

Adventure R will not be a 2018 model, but

instead will debut for the 2019 model year.

It shares a parallel-twin engine with the

KTM 790 Duke, which also debuted at the

EICMA show in Milan. The 105hp engine

is a fully stressed part of the steel-tube

chassis, which means there should be

excellent weight savings for the 790

Adventure R.

A full electronics suite is expected, with

the 790 Duke already showing itself to be

fully stocked against the competition.

Virtually every brand has a new or revised

competitor in this adventure-touring

space, though we think the KTM will hold

its own.

Of note are the bulbous panels low and

on the sides of the KTM 790 Adventure

R prototype, which we still haven’t fully

figured out.

Extra storage? Low-slung fuel tanks for

better weight distribution? Leg protection

for the rider? Our jury is still out…

16 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


Triumph News: The 1200

Adventure

The 2018 Triumph Tiger 1200 too gets a

much needed overhaul, though like the

Tiger 800, the changes are hard to spot on

the full-size adventure-tourer in the British

brand’s ADV lineup.

Triumph is quoting a 10 kilogramme weight

reduction for the new Tiger 1200 though

(note the name change too, by the way),

along with over 100 other improvements

found on the adventure bike.

The biggest improvement comes to the

1,215cc three-cylinder engine, which

makes just shy of 140hp in its shaft-drive

format – just as it did in 2017.

Hoping to make a splash with adventure

riders with its 2018 edition however,

Triumph has been sure to pack the Tiger

1200 with a bevy of premium features,

starting with WP Suspension’s semi-active

suspension pieces.

Other niceties include and an up-anddown

quickshifter, colour TFT dash,

keyless ignition, adaptive cornering lights,

all-LED lighting, updated cruise control,

an electronic windscreen, and heated

seats for both the rider and passenger and

heated grips.

Triumph doesn’t stop there though. An

inertial measurement unit (IMU) has been

added to the mix, which provides cornering

ABS, as well as helps adjust the new

traction control system.

A ride-by-wire throttle provides six riding

modes, including the new “Off-Road Pro”

mode, which allows the rider to disengage

the electronic rider aids.

Like the Tiger 800, the 2018 Triumph Tiger

1200 comes in six different varieties: two

on-road models, and four off-road models.

The new Triumph 800 Tiger:

The Triumph Tiger 800 gets a refresh for

the 2018 model year – 200 of them, if you

believe the British brand, though they are

hard to spot with the naked eye.

While not a completely new ADV bike,

the 2018 Triumph Tiger 800 does get

meaningful upgrades to a variety of its core

systems, helping it maintain its status as

the benchmark in the middleweight ADV

category.

Triumph tells us that the 800cc threecylinder

engine has been made more

responsive, while peak power remains at

95hp. The Brits have also shortened 1st

gear, for better low-speed character. The

exhaust has been worked over, as has the

new five-position windscreen.

Of course, the feature you will be really

happy to hear about is the new “Off Road

Pro” mode (XC models only), which lets one

turn off the various rider aids, which is ideal

for off-road riding, especially if you are a

pro. So…that name makes a bit of sense.

Adding to the changes are the full-LED

lighting elements, the subtly changed

bodywork, and the bevy of new colours that

Triumph has cooked up for the ADV line.

Our favorite feature has to be the new TFT

dash though, which takes a page from the

new Triumph Street Triple 765, and has a

number of smart-looking interface designs.

Other standard features include traction

control, ABS, ride-by-wire throttle, cruise

control, heated seats and grips. For 2018,

a “low ride height” model continues to

be also available, for riders with shorter

inseams.

Still available in six confusing different

varieties, there is a Triumph Tiger 800

model for just about anyone looking to ride

on the street and off-road.

Broadly, the Tiger 800 XC models are

off-road focused, while the Tiger 800 XR

models are on-road focused.

Also, the more letters, the more features,

though the lowercase “x” models have less

than the “A” and “T” models…aww crap,

we told it was confusing.

DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017 17


The New Honda Africa Twin

Adventure Sports

The Honda Africa Twin gets a sibling for the

2018 model year, as the Honda Africa Twin

Adventure Sports debuted at Honda’s pre-

EICMA launch event.

As expected the Africa Twin Adventure

Sports is a more off-road focused version

of the Honda Africa Twin, and comes with

a set of features that make it easier to go

globetrotting on the plucky adventuretourer

from Honda.

The Adventure Sports version comes with

improvements over the original Africa Twin

design.

This includes new foot rests, a new

instrument panel, ride-by-wire throttle

control with three throttle maps, seven levels

of Honda’s traction control system, a new

exhaust design, and a lithium-ion battery.

Internally there are some changes as well,

like a modified airbox, which improves

the mid-range response, as does a lighter

balancer shaft.

Looking at the differences between the two

machines though, at the heart of the Honda

Africa Twin Adventure Sports though is

a new larger fuel tank, to the tune of 24

liters, as well as taller suspension (10.6″ of

ground clearance).

As you might have noticed, the Honda

Africa Twin Adventure Sports doesn’t stray

too far from the concept of the same name

that we saw at last year’s EICMA show,

which is probably a good thing, considering

how well-received that prototype was with

the Italian crowd media.

Accordingly, the details of the Africa Twin

Adventure Sports includes a bevy of crash

protection pieces, like a full crash cage

around the adventure-tourer’s body, as well

as a robust skid plate. The bodywork has

also been changed.

The seat is now flatter, the windscreen

is taller and heated grips are fitted as

standard.

An optional item, the dual-clutch

transmission (DCT) has also been improved

for the Africa Twin lineup. Conversely, the

parallel-twin engine makes 94hp, and 73

lbs ft of torque. The Honda Africa Twin

Adventure Sports tips the scales at 243

kilogrammes at the curb.

For Honda, the Africa Twin Adventure

Sports adds to the lineup what many

manufacturers are doing with the ADV

offerings, so the model debut makes a lot

of apples-to-apples sense, when compared

to the other OEMs.

Given the Africa Twin’s strong price point

against the competition, we’re pretty sure

that Big Red just put the BMW R1200GS

Adventure and KTM 1290 Adventure R

on notice, and that’s a good thing for

motorcycle enthusiasts.

As Honda’s founder Soichiro Honda was

fond of saying, competition improves the

breed.

The 2018 Honda CRF1000L Africa Twin

Adventure Sports will be available in one

30th anniversary Tricolore paint scheme to

celebrate the XRV650’s launch in 1988.

There’s no word yet on local availability.

18 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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Ducati Scrambler 1100 Debuts

We have all the details on Ducati’s new

heritage motorcycle. Surprisingly, it’s not

just one motorcycle, but three flavours of

the Ducati Scrambler 1100 have debuted.

There is the new Ducati Scrambler 1100,

the Ducati Scrambler 1100 Special, and

the more premium Ducati Scrambler 1100

Sport for the 2018 model year.

All three machines are built around Ducati’s

venerable air-cooled v-twin engine design,

which comes in a 1,079cc format and

makes 84hp and 65 lbs ft of peak torque.

The top of the food chain model for the

Scrambler Ducati family, the Scrambler

1100 models all come with Bosch’s

cornering ABS as standard, dual 320mm

brake discs up front, which are mated

to Brembo 4.32 calipers and a hydraulic

master cylinder.

Ducati has also added 10-level traction

control to the new Scrambler 1100 model,

as well as a ride-by-wire throttle and an

LED headlight. With an 18″ wheel up front,

and a 17″ wheel in the back, the Ducati

Scrambler 1100 series continues to sport

the Pirelli MT60 RS tires.

Looking further down the spec sheet, we

begin to see the differences between the

three 2018 Ducati Scrambler 1100 models.

The weight for the base and sport model

Ducati Scrambler 1100 is 205 kgs at

the curb (189 kgs dry), while the Ducati

Scrambler 1100 Special is a bit heavier, 210

KG’s at the curb.

Alloy wheels are featured on the Ducati

Scrambler 1100, while spoked wheels

come on the Scrambler 1100 Special

(hence the extra weight), whereas the

Ducati Scrambler 1100 Sport features

lighter weight alloy wheels.

Meanwhile, suspension on the base and

special model is handled by Marzocchi

forks (fully adjustable) and a Kayaba

shock (preload and rebound settings only).

The Scrambler 1100 Sport uses Öhlins

suspension, front and rear.

We’re still waiting for word on pricing and

availability… Watch this space.

Bigger Is Better. So Says the

New Ducati Multistrada 1260

For the 2018 model year, the Ducati

Multistrada gets a bevy of updates, and

becomes the Ducati Multistrada 1260.

As the name change suggests, the

new Italian ADV machine features the

1,262cc DVT engine, previously found

only on the Ducati XDiavel.

The changes for the 2018 Ducati

Multistrada 1260 extend beyond just

the motor though, and if

you look closely, you will

see that Ducati’s engineers have made

several tweaks and changes to the

Multistrada 1200’s steel trellis chassis.

Of course, what people are really

going to talk about is the much

anticipated Testastretta DVT 1262,

which makes a whopping 158hp in its

Multistrada 1260 form.

The larger engine was designed to

make its power down low (aided by

its variable valve technology), and the

Italians say that the Ducati Multistrada

1260 makes 85% of its torque below

3,500 rpm.

For bonus fun, Ducati has also made

available an optional up-and-down

quickshifter, which is standard on the

various “S” models in the lineup.

The entire Multistrada lineup

gets this new 1,262cc

motor, including the very

handsome Ducati Multistrada

1260 S Pikes Peak version,

which tips the scales at 205kgs

(dry) – almost 3 kgs lighter than the

Multistrada 1260 base model.

Service intervals on the valves is set

at 18,000 miles, which should allay

the fears of road warriors that have

previously shied away from Italian

ADV bikes.

No word on pricing or availability

in SA yet.

Ducati Desert Sled

You’d have read all about this bike in last

months issue - for the 2018 model year, Ducati

is updating the Scrambler Desert Sled with

another colour option, one that the Italian

brand calls “Shining Black”. As boring as

that name sounds, it might be the best retro

Scrambler paint job that we have ever seen

from Borgo Panigale.

The new Desert Sled colour scheme screams

back to another part of the 1970s – a time

when souping up passenger vans and living in

them was an acceptable thing for non-creepy

men to do.

Still, we love the effect that is done with the

all-black paint, contrasted with the warm red/

orange/yellow rainbow colors. Now, the only

question is how hard would it be to wedge

the Scrambler 1100’s engine in this off-road

chassis? Not too hard, we think.

20 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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A Closer Look at the Ducati

Multistrada 1260 S Pikes Peak

The Ducati Multistrada 1260 S Pikes Peak

takes its name from one of America’s

oldest racing venues, and as a result it is

the sportiest version of Ducati’s adventuretouring

machines.

Now fitted with Ducati’s Testastretta DVT

1262 engine, the Multistrada 1260 S Pikes

Peak makes 85% of its torque below 3,500

rpm on the v-twin engine. That is a good

thing, because Ducati says the bulk of

Multistrada owners rarely get above 6,000

rpm on their machines.

This makes the 1,262cc engine the perfect

candidate for low-revving excursions, like the

ones you would take down a dusty fire road.

For the sports-focused Pikes Peak model,

the choice is a little bit more curious, but we

won’t scoff at the 158hp on tap.

It looks great!

Beta enters the 125cc Fray

The guys at Beta have been upping

their game lately in the off-road

racing department with new and

updated models as well as a factory

off-road team.

With the addition of the XC3 125

Pro class in the GNCC Series this

year, Beta has unveiled a brand new

125cc two-stroke. The goal for this

bike is to be able to serve as both

a play bike and a competitive race

bike against any other small bore two

strokes in its class.

The Technical and R&D Departments

at Beta’s Italian factory have been

working hard to produce this new

machine with weight distribution

and power delivery being the main

focus during engine development.

The compact engine design provides

performance with a smooth but

powerful power delivery. The two

ring piston design provides reliability

and better performance in the low to

mid RPM ranges which is common

with enduro riding. Likewise, the

exhaust flange system on the

cylinder is similar to the other 2018

RR models which is claimed to

have better control of the pistonflap-cylinder

front tolerance for

better performance at low RPM. A

Beta progressive power valve and a

crankshaft with polyamide inserts are

also featured.

Additionally, a removable cylinder

head dome, possible due to moving

the engine mount to the cylinder,

is rigid and lightweight and allows

for fine tuning and replacement of

the combustion chamber for better

power throughout. The die-cast

aluminum crankcase features an

innovative design layout to reduce

weight without compromising

strength. Magnesium clutch and

ignition covers provide minimal

weight with great looks.

The bike comes stock with V-Force4

Reed Valves for optimum lowend

power output. The multi-disc

clutch features the clutch actuator

arm integrated into the outer cover

unlike the 250 and 300 RR’s. It also

displays a 6-speed gearbox and is

ready for an electric-starter which is

offered as an accessory.

The chrome-moly steel frame was

redesigned from the 250/300 RR

frame to compliment the smaller and

more compact engine and enhance

its rideability and maneuverability.

The upper engine head stay is

altered to reduce vibrations while

still maintaining optimal stiffness.

The Sachs 48mm open-cartridge

fork and the shock have its unique

settings developed specifically for

this bike and the Nissin brakes are

standard.

It comes with a skid plate and a filter

box sleeve to improve the flow from

low to high RPM’s.

It displays the same colours and

graphics as the rest of the 2018 RR

range and the price has yet to be

determined.

It will be available in SA early 2018.

That sounds like fun!

www.cayenne.co.za

22 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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4 Great

Adventure Bikes

So. Where are we going boys? That was on Tuesday morning. The week before was spent collecting

bikes from all over with the basic idea that we were heading out for a soft adventure. Soft

meaning – majority tar with some lekker gravel roads thrown in for good measure. By the time

we’d rustled up a few bikes and gathered, we were still clueless as to where we were headed.

That’s the beauty of riding a motorcycle… Words: Glenn Foley Pics: Kyle Lawrenson & Glenn

24 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


We had gathered a motley crue of bikes

– and as it happens, they turned out

to represent a great cross section of

capacities. The Junior member of the

family was the Triumph 800XCX. Next in

line was the slightly bigger Africa Twin

1000. KTM provided us with their new

1090S – small wheel version. Yamaha

came to the party with their venerable

Yamaha 1200 Super Tenere’.

Four very different bikes with four

very different riders.

The fat Ed and Kyle are pretty

experienced, having ridden just about

everything. Our guest riders were

Brandon from We Sell Parts, who is

predominantly a road racer and Steven

Crittall who is an avid social off-road

rider.

‘Ok boys – why don’t we head

towards Bapsfontein and see what

happens?” And that is exactly what we

did. At the refuel in Baps (To top the

bikes up), we made a bet that we’d find

a circular route with no toll gates. Hmm,

we got that one right. Off we went,

Bronkhorstspruit, Groblersdal.

Quite a lekker road in good condition.

Scenic mountains would you believe?

We need to get our dirt bikes down here

for some exploring. There are a couple

of small townships en route – might be

busy on the weekend, but during the

week it was very quiet.

We had to chuckle – there is a

massive HIV campaign going on in the

town just outside Groblersdal. Signs

abound telling you all about the use of

prophylactics. Really funny stuff and

we almost crashed into a few of the

potholes reading them.

Groblersdal is a really pretty town,

surrounded by farmlands and vineyards.

We did a fairly circular route looking for

the local Wimpy to top up on energy

for the day. Of course the talk was all

about the bikes – and shared views

and opinions. We saw a sign for Marble

Hall – hey – I used to go to school near

there – let’s go and check it out! Off we

went – chopping and changing bikes all

along. Marble hall is a very unassuming

, the highlight was watching a farmer

drive a Kubota backacter through a

fairly large intersection.

No Tolls yet, we were doing pretty

well. We saw a sign for Polokwane… so

that’s the way we headed. Limpopo! As

we exited Marble Hall, there stood the

DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017 25


Fuzz. We all pulled over grinning sheepishly

– the Triumph is unregistered, no number

plate – but it is new. We extracted our

licences, smiled and explained – and they

waved us along wishing us a safe trip.

Some people are so cool!

We hit a back road. Long, straight – and

bar the goats and donkeys, BORING

as tears. Kinda like the old homelands.

We hit the T-junction on the outskirts of

Polokwane with fuel on low… Beeline to

the garage and a bit of maths.

We’d done exactly the same mileage

on all of the bikes and the consumption

was close, bearing in mind that the 800

was still being run in – so nothing over

130KPH/6000 RPM on that bike:

At 263.5kms:

The Triumph took: 14.5 litres.

The Honda Africa Twin: 14.5 litres.

The KTM 1190S: 14 litres.

The Yamaha Tenere’: 15 litres.

Interesting.

Even though there is a discrepancy in

engine capacities, there was only a litre or

so in it. We re-ran the exercise at the end of

the trip with a bit more fast riding involved.

Cutting through Polokwane is – well not

too pleasant, it’s a massive cosmopolitan

city, busy traffic and all that… we saw a

sign that said Haenertsburg… Hmmm –

been a long time. Out of town, past the

Peter Mokaba Stadium we went. Back

into homelands. Keep your wits about

you through rural traffic, more goats and

In the republic of bapsfontein.

Comparing notes on fuel consumption.

Ver Verlaate Vlaktes.

26 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


donkeys and Nissan 1400 bakkies. And suddenly we

start climbing into the mountains along verdant forest

roads. This is what makes riding so worthwhile. A quick

stop outside Haenertsburg to swap smiles and a guy in

a bakkie pulls up to check out the bikes. “Hey guys –

there is a brewery in the forest that you need to go and

check out!” Evening accommodation sorted! But first

we went to visit the Debengeni Falls.

Guys and Gals – this is why we ride – enough twisties

to keep the grins pinned. This is a gorgeous neck of the

woods and we strongly recommend that you get out

there and see it. The falls themselves are spectacular –

but the road heading towards Tzaneen… wow!

We shot back up the hill and into the forest – our

overnight was at Zwakala Brewery. A beautiful, rustic

place. We slept in a converted tobacco shed, comfy

self-catering with a lekker braai area – and the beer,

while leaning towards the pricey side at R25.00 a bottle

is fresh and crisp.

The plan is to head back there for a holiday with the

family soon. www.zwakalabrewery.com

Friday dawned rainy and generally mooky. One of

our party had tickets to go and see Live, so we needed

to hustle along a bit. No maps or GPS’ meant a typical

long way round. Haenetsberg , via those marvelous

twisties to Tzaneen. And more traffic check poinbtrs.

Once again – super friendly, and off we went. A quick

stop in at Tzaneen dam – cool spot – refuel – and we

followed a sign that said Mpumalanga.

This is Zwakala Brewery

Lydenberg 125KM’s.

Ish! long way round. But how cool to be on these bikes?

They all gobble up mileage and we were soon whipping

past vast game fences in the African bushveld.

Flat, fast, fantastic roads. The distant mountains

started to grow and we were soon climbing up the

Schoemanskloof pass towards the iconic JG Strydom

tunnel. A fantastic piece of South African road.

The famous JG strydom -

soon to be J.Zuma Tunnel.

The Shoe near Orighstad.

The first section of gravel.

28 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


By now the tummies were grumbling…

Signboards along the side of the road

display Vetkoek and Pannekoeke, Pure

Plaas Kos, the perfect, healthy alternative.

And we were doing our bit for the local

economy- sometimes way nicer than the

commercial establishments.

Great views led us into Lydenberg and

some of the most badly potholed roads on

the whole trip. Lydenburg – to the famous

Dullstroom where we filled up and did the

maths again: remember – by this time, the

XCX was run in and we’d been going a bit

faster… identical distances from the last

refuel in Tzaneen.

The Triumph took: 13.29 litres.

The Honda Africa Twin: 13.97 litres.

The KTM 1190S: 14.59 litres.

The Yamaha Tenere’: 14.21 litres.

Dullstroom to Belfast passed in a blur.

Belfasts streets are also very interesting

thanks to the trucks that trundle around

that town. Kyle pointed his KTM for JHB

on the freeway, the rest of us decided to

take the Stoffberg road. It’s much nicer! A

mountain pass into the flats before you turn

towards Middelberg. And there are no tolls.

Middelberg to Witbank on the back

roads is somewhat uninspiring, the roads

are in good shape, but it’s very industrial

and all that. If you get it just right, you can

hit the freeway after Witbank and skip all

the tolls. We thought we were very clever…

but the roadworks and traffic were just

mind numbing…

Nature had the last say in this trip. We

were properly whacked by a Highveld

thunderstorm and huddled in one of

the weighbridge offices just outside

Bapsfontein. It was hectic, like a mini

tornado. But then the sun shone –

rainbows and smiles all the way home –

and not a single toll gate.

Tzaneen Dam

When you hit Dullstroom, you have to

visit the Duck And Trout.

Polokwane Town Hall

A quick piccy outside Tzaneen Yamaha.

30 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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So that was the trip. All about The Bikes?

This was a great spread of bikes. We

sent a request to everyone – explaining

what we were planning and the guys

came back with this mix.

We’ll start from the smallest to the

largest:

The Triumph 800 XCX.

The triple cylinder XCX has really proved

itself – and on this trip it was certainly not

lacking, despite the fact that it was the

smallest of the bunch.

With no fewer than eight Tiger 800

models in Triumph’s lineup, the XCX is

the mid-level off-road-ready version. As

such it comes equipped with plastic hand

guards, an aluminum sump guard, an

aluminum radiator guard, engine protection

bars, a centrestand and an auxiliary 12-

volt power socket. Include the standard

cruise control, additional dash functionality,

switchable ABS, and variable ride modes,

and you have a bike that on paper anyway,

measures up to many of the bigger

adventurers.

32 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


The Tiger’s seating position is somewhat more road

biased with its handlebars positioned lower than other

off-road adventurers, forcing a rider to lean over a

tad further when standing on the pegs. Taller riders

never complained of discomfort, and shorter riders

welcomed its adjustable 33.0-to-33.8-inch seat height.

The biggest single update to the Triumph 800 XCX

was the upgraded suspension by WP. This has made

a really noticeable difference in off-road conditions.

Add this to the 21” inch front wheel and you have a

bike that’s so well rounded. It is an absolute joy on

the road – with such creamy power delivery. Handling

is predictable and stable and even the big riders

commented on the overall comfort and ergonomics.

Fast enough at around the 190kph top speed, but she

will gladly cruise along at 160 all day long.

Triumph really has built such a well-balanced

motorcycle. It is good at – well just about everything

and has pegged itself as one of our very favourite

adventure machines.

The Tiger proves to be a good option for anyone

intimidated by the 1000cc plus adventure bikes on

offer. Its more easily managed size and weight are

something to be seriously considered, and it oozes

value considering the robust electronics package and

other add-ons.

Not biggest, baddest ass on the market, but such

an accomplished all-rounder.


The Honda Africa Twin:

Honda absolutely did their homework when

they built this bike. Not only does it look

the part with its clean lines, aggressive

headlamps and tall posture, but they

fitted some proper dirtbike stuff to give it

that much extra “houding”. The cockpit

is open, the fairing effective but not all

encompassing and the seat is ‘all day

comfortable’. Another thing that we are not

complaining about is the lack of clutter and

gizmos on the bike. The clocks are clear

and have a stripped back simplicity that

is refreshing compared to the information

overload on some bikes, where just turning

on the heated grips seems to require a

sequence of 16 button presses. The display

shows speed, rpm, gear, traction setting,

fuel and that’s about it – perfect. They are,

however quite difficult to read in the bright

sun – we’d probably angle the clock a bit

more. If there is another criticism, it would

be Honda’s inexplicable decision to swap

the position of the hooter and the indicator

switch. Just like our Husqvarna terra, every

junction gets accompanied by a toot.

We have ridden the AT a few times since

the launch a few years ago, but this was

the first time on a real, long road trip – with

less dirt. At the heart of this beast is the

very torquey parallel twin that pumps out

a healthy 93 bhp. Now that’s a massive

amount on gravel, but is way, way down

on the existing competition. It does make

great power and accelerates very smoothly

all the way up to the 200kph mark. It is

physically quite a big machine – so you

do feel like King Dong tearing along. It is a

great all-rounder but it definitely lends itself

more to gravel and off-road trails. In fact –

in the dirt, it brings out the hooligan in you.

We found that tackling the twisties on the

fast road, you really need to put input into

turning. She also feels a little bit top-heavy so

you really need to change your riding style.

But what a bike. Definitely one of our

favourites.

Honda has an absolute winner and it is

no surprise that this is the bike that almost

single handedly destroyed the smaller

800cc market.

34 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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The KTM 1090S:

On our trip many people asked why we

selected the” S” (small wheel) rather than the

bigger wheeled “R”. That’s easy – this was a

soft adventure and we are of the opinion that

a bike like this is more than enough for most

who travel the road every day and wants to

do the odd foray into the gravel.

The conventional 48mm WP forks and

WP rear shock work straight out of the box.

The forks are non-adjustable but on our

test route that didn’t pose any problems.

A 170-section rear tyre and the 1090’s

relatively low weight enable it to be hustled

with ease. Boring it certainly isn’t.

There are three riding modes: Sport,

Street, and Rain with an optional Off-road

setting. Each mode changes the engine

characteristics and level of traction control

intervention. And you can really feel the

differences.

Although it’s called the 1090, the engine

is the same 1050cc motor as used in the

old 1050 Adventure. In the old model KTM

restricted it to 95bhp, but they’ve unleashed

an extra 30bhp for the 1090, pushing peak

power to 125bhp and torque to 80.4ftlb.

A bonus with the smaller front wheel is

that fact that the bike is a bit shorter than

the ones mounted with 21 inch fronts. The

new 1090 has all the appealing qualities

of the 1050 and is still easy to ride. But

extra power makes it a more exciting ride,

especially on twisty roads where its excellent

handling and light steering come to the fore.

If you happened to catch our launch

feature on this bike at the beginning of

the year, you’ll have read our comments.

Scimitar. Great engine. Awesome on the

road. This is one great motorcycle. Perhaps

a bit less refined than the others on this ride

– it has a raw edge to it that makes it really

appealing.

Comfortable, compact with long legs

and blistering acceleration. This bike is

exciting from startup and makes you want

to ride fast. And don’t be fooled by the

smaller wheel – it is just as much fun in

the dirt – exceptionally capable, with plush

suspension to soak up the hobbles.

Reading back to our launch feature, we

mentioned that we got a bit of a headshake

on one of the fast gravel sections. If you plan

to ride a lot of gravel, chat to your dealer

about a steering damper – sorted straight

away.

KTM’s mantra is “Ready To Race” and you

can feel this in every one of their bikes that

you ride. It’s fun, fast, comfortable – and that

V-Twin engine is a real peach.

36 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


The Big Daddy – Yamaha’s 1200 Super Tenere’

Yamaha has been very conservative in developing this

bike. And to be quite honest it is easy to understand why.

If you are looking for a bike that simply eats distance

in absolute comfort, then this is one machine that you

should perhaps be looking at.

In our opinion, this is the closest option you have to

BMW’s GS1200. Big, smooth comfortable. This one was

fitted with an Akarapovic pipe, gives it a bit more meat

without being obnoxious.

It has proved to be one of the most reliable bikes out

there and if you were to describe it in a few words –

Capable, Comfortable, smooth – all the things that most

distance riders are looking for.

Over the years it has been upgraded a bit in the

power department and Yamaha has given her all of the

electronic mergafters that anyone would need.

This one came with a Yamaha Top-Box – great quality -

tip. Don’t try to carry eggs. Ours exploded.

Load it with luggage, pop the handbag on the back

– and this is the bike of this group that we’d choose to

head down for a distance holiday.

Of all of these bikes, we’ve probably spent most time

in this saddle. It is the Juggernaught of the four bikes

ridden, with great gravel manners and excellent road

capabilities.

In fact it was quite interesting to see how – as the riders

got a bit tired and needed to hit the longer roads, they

gravitated to the more comfortable options like the Supe

and the XCX…

A supremely comfortable distance tourer with decent

gravel manners.

38 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


2nd opinions from people who don’t ride a lot of

adventure machines:

Brandon: being more road inclined, Brandon

spent most of his time on the KTM. But when we

hit the long road home, we could not get him off

the Super Tenere’.

Yamaha 1200 Super Tenere:

The Super Ten was definitely the most comfortable

bike and offered the most wind protection for the

rider. Definitely my choice for long rides.

KTM 1090S:

The KTM is the most exciting bike to ride. The

throttle response is fantastic, engine sounds

beautiful, handling and brakes both superb. If you

are going to spend most of your time on road this

would be my choice.

Honda Africa Twin:

This bike does everything perfectly just like most

Honda’s do. The only criticcism about this bike is the

angle of the instrumentation which is a bit difficult to

read at times.

Triumph 800 XCX:

This little 800 impressed me. The engine was

superbly smooth and produced ample power to run

with the bigger capacity bikes on test. This bike felt

lighter than the rest and was easier for me to move

around and would be my choice of the 4 bikes that

we tested.

Steve: We could not pry him off the Africa Twin.

Yamaha: Very smooth & enough torque, great bike

for Capetown trip

KTM: Open the throttle and it roars at you. Very

comfortable and sporty.

Honda: One of the nicest looking adventure bikes,

great on the dirt. I’m going to buy one.

Triumph: Smooth on the throttle & very nimble, a

great all rounder.

The beauty of adventure bikes. All

dressed up with no clue...

DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017 3 9


MOTOCROSS

MANUFACTURER

MOTOCROSS

65cc CLASS

Daiyaan Manuel

ENDURO

MANUFACTURER

ENDURO

SILVER CHALLANGE

Kirsten Landman

MOTOCROSS

85cc CLASS

Dylan Kirk

ENDURO

MASTERS

Hilton Hayward

CROSS COUNTRY

MANUFACTURER

CROSS COUNTRY

MASTERS

CROSS COUNTRY

SENIORS

Peter Holl

Juan Van Rooyen


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MOTO-MATE STONERIDGE 011 609 0944

JUST BIKING 016 421 1153

KCR MOTORCYCLE FANATIX 011 975 5545

OFF-ROAD CYCLES 012 333 6443

PRIMROSE MOTORCYCLES 011 828 9091

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Cameron Durow

Nanda Clowes

ENDURO

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MOTOCROSS

85cc Pro Mini

Camden Mclellan

ENDURO

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Travis Teasdale

CROSS COUNTRY

OR1 CLASS

CROSS COUNTRY

OVERALL

Ross Branch

Ross Branch


The 2017 Motul Roof Of Africa

50 years of ROCKS

Pics by Kyle lawrenson, Red Bull, Action in Motion, Franziska Brandl and many more. Thanks Guys!

Wade Young Blitzes the field! This year: 1st Wade Young, Sherco. 2nd Travis Teasdale, KTM.

3rd Graham Jarvis Husqvarna. 4th Blake Gutzeit Yamaha.

46 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


To Celebrate this 50th Roof

milestone, the weather Gods sent

along a bit of snow to spice things up

and temperatures plummeted in the

Mountain kingdom. So this is one Roof

that we’ll all talk about for a while.

You never know with the Roof.

A few days prior to the event, we

were scorching at 30 plus degree

temperatures. There was a bit of

consternation as temperatures

plummeted and the snow feel. Day 1

was delayed a bit whole Roof officials

made sure that the chopper could fly –

and then it was Race On!

By day 2, the snow had melted and

sunny blue skies were the order of

business. The slightly cool temperatures

made for perfect racing weather. And

race it certainly was.

Wade Young overcame three days of

brutal racing to win the 50th edition of

the ‘Mother of Hard Enduro’ – the Motul

Roof of Africa in Lesotho.

The South African raced into the

history books after claiming his third

victory in the event, leading home fellow

countryman Travis Teasdale and British

legend Graham Jarvis.

Young said: “To get back on the top

of the Hard Enduro podium and do it at

home in the 50th edition of the Roof of

Africa is very special.

DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017 47


The snow made day one interesting...

I think it’s the flux capacitor...

South African OB’s to counter the snow.

Happy Husqvarna familia...

Dirt And Trails Foreign correspondent Peter

Schluter gets some Basotho Culture.

48 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


“It’s been a tough three days of hard

racing. Travis kept me honest all week. I

managed to break him on one of the climbs

and kept it together until the end.”

Riders had to navigate isolated mountain

trails and contend with a mixture of

rocky terrain and unpredictable weather

conditions including blisteringly hot

sunshine one day, and unseasonably heavy

snowfall the next.

The epic race brought a close to the Red

Bull Hard Enduro season with Jarvis, who

was aiming for a fifth Roof of Africa title,

winning the overall World Series.

He said: “With the riding so fast it was

tough to catch the leaders. They had a big

lead and were just better than me on the

open fast stuff this year.

“It’s always nice to be on the podium

and with consistent wins this year ending

2017 as the overall champion is the icing

on the cake.”

He diced a long battle with young South

African star, Blake Gutzeit (Bidvest bLU

cRU Yamaha Racing), Jarvis gapped him

up Soldiers. Approaching the final climb,

Jarvis felt that he “should be able to get

time on Blake there”. Asked about the

speed of Young and Teasdale, he candidly

retorted, “They are faster than me in the

fast stuff, that’s all there is to it”.

Blake Gutzeit flew the Yamaha flag

high by riding in to a superb fourth place.

“It’s an honour to ride with a rider of

that calibre”, he said of his duel with the

legendary Jarvis. “He is the best in the

world and gapped me on the last hill, where

it mattered”.

Racing into 5th was last years second

place finisher, KTM’s Alfredo “Freddy”

Gomez.

His sister Sandra Gomez also entered

the record books by bringing her

Husqvarna home in 30th place to become

the highest ever female finisher in the

history of the race. What a family!

Lesotho is riding heaven...

All the way from Yamaha Japan... Mori Kosuke

DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017 4 9


SILVER CLASS:

The very talented Heinrich Zellhuber (Alfie Cox MOTUL

KTM Racing) did it again maintaining his lead over team

mate Bradley Cox (Alfie Cox MOTUL KTM Racing), to win

convincingly. Wilhelm Schonfeldt (BCR Arrow Yamaha) came

home in third. Czech rider Zdenek Cyprian, finished in4th

place.

BRONZE CLASS

Brett Geary (KTM) was a man on a mission. He put the

hammer down to clinch the win. Clearly a good year for

Brett’s, as Brett Boyes (KTM) brought it home in second.

Grant Burton-Durham (Mechspec Racing), also KTM

mounted, rode into third.

Kirsten Landman - 2nd gold Roof

Top 3 each class:

GOLD:

1. Wade Young (Sherco Liqui Moly Racing) - 10Hrs 41,28

2. Travis Teasdale (Brother Leader Tread KTM) - 10Hrs 52,34

3. Graham Jarvis (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna) - 11Hrs 04,06

SILVER:

1. Heinrich Zellhuber (Alfie Cox MOTUL KTM) - 11Hrs 28,02

2. Bradley Cox (Alfie Cox MOTUL KTM) - 11Hrs 49,36

3. Wilhelm Schonfeldt (BCR Arrow Yamaha) - 12Hrs 01,00

BRONZE:

1. Brett Geary (KTM) - 9Hrs 20,22

2. Brett Boyes (KTM) - 9Hrs 24,52

3. Grant Burton Durham (Mechspec Racing) - 9Hrs 32,18

For full race results go to: www.racecontrol.co.za

Gold podium...

50 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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Graham Jarvis: Husqvarna

“With the riding so fast it was tough to catch the

leaders. They had a big lead and were just better

than me on the open fast stuff this year.”

Wade Young: Sherco Racing Red Bull

“Couldn’t be happier to finish the season on

a high. Thanks to all the South Africans on the

mountain this weekend, was unreal. Couldn’t

have done this with out my team.”

52 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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Blake Gudzeit - 4th overall

Dwayne Kleyhans

Letti in Full Cry

54 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


Flanagan goes high...

Steve Thomson with Yamaha’s factory riders.

Two of SA’s top riders - don’t even look tired...

Wild Will The Cox Family - Brad 2nd in Silver Happy KTM team - Franziska, Alfredo and Riaan

Lots of talent on this stage...

DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017 55


Husky’s Sandra Gomez - 31st overall Gold

Mario Roman - Sherco

Team bLU cRU keeping the Yammies happy

Thumbs up from Darryl Curtis

Gomez in biking heaven...

The Luck boys...

56 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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58 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


HONDA BACK IN

NATIONAL MX FOR 2018

Motivation: Jarrad Boog Goetsch from

Revival motorsports alongside Fanie

Scholtz from BBZambezi Honda have

dived back into the big leagues by

developing their own full MX team to

compete in the regional and national MX

scene in 2018.

Partnering up with this passionate driven

team will be Heine Engelbrecht from ADA a

well known establishment for training, who

will assist the team in all aspects.

Better Batters who deal in the food

industry have taken a chance on MX

development in SA and are fully backing

this young vibrant team.

Crowd pleaser Mike Kok is back, but he

won’t race the national scene, but will be

full supporting this team at all the the races

and events. He will be an ambassador and

we are pretty sure that you’ll get to see him

in action at some of the races.

Gerrie Kok is a young up and coming

rider will ride a crf450f on the national

scene and will truly shine – this was quoted

by the late Jannie Stander from Syringa.

Enrico Narbonese is a previous success

in SA and dove into America head on with

much success in Loretta Lynns for 3 years.

He’s back in action locally and will be a

true contender for some bar bashing and

podium battles..

Jarrad Goetsch has much experience

with development projects in SA and

understands exactly what the rider needs.

Going forward with Honda is a passion

Jarrad has had for some time having raced

for the brand before.

“We understand it’s not gonna be spoon

fed to us. Hard work lots of testing lie

ahead and being a part of the Honda family

will be an honour.”

Carly Goetsch team coordinator will be

at the forefront looking after the boys.

She has had much success managing

athletes under the monster energy banner,

names like Mike Kok, Richie van der

Westhuizen and Alistair Sayer to name a few.

It will be awesome to see Honda’s back

in the mix. BB Zambezi’s Fanie Scholtz

and Revivals Jarrad Goetsch are onto

something… Watch this space…

DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017 5 9


RACE PARTS

www.motosport.co.za

Brett Swanepoel (Pepson Plastics Husqvarna)

Pics: Nadia Jordaan

National Offroad Champs crowned!

As the dust settled after the recent Atlas

Copco Gold 400, the sixth and final round

of the 2017 SA National Cross Country

Championship for Motorcycles and

Quads (SACCS Moto) that took place at

Glenharvie on the West Rand, the points

have been finalised and the championship

titles have been allocated.

After a competitive season with some

neck to neck racing that took riders

from Lichtenburg in the North-West

Province to the Battlefields at Dundee in

KwaZulu-Natal and from racing for three

days and completing almost a thousand

kilometres in the Botswana desert back to

Harrismith in the Free State, most of the

titles were only finalised at the final round

towards the end of October. The Drop

Points system, where riders who started,

finished and scored points at each of the

six rounds had to drop their worst set of

results, also came into play.

In the motorcycle category, the bigger

bikes in the OR1 (Open) Class did not

have it all their own way and the overall

and OR1 champion, Ross Branch

(Brother Leader Tread KTM) as well as

the runner-up and the winner of the last

two rounds, Kenny Gilbert (Liqui Moly

Racing Husqvarna) had to be quite weary

of those behind them. Ten points separate

Branch and Gilbert on the overall leader

board while third-placed Brett Swanepoel

(Pepson Plastics Husqvarna), who

clinched the OR2 (250cc) title, trails

Gilbert by ten points.

Branch’s team-mate, Louwrens Mahoney

(OR2), made a successful comeback

to the national racing scene by finishing

fourth overall, 16 points behind Swanepoel

and 16 points ahead of the motocross

ace and rookie off-road racer, Tristan

Purdon (Bidvest Blu Cru Yamaha) who

was again only eight points ahead of the

newly crowned OR3 (200cc) champion,

Kyle Flanagan (Bidvest Blu Cru Yamaha).

The rest of the top 10 consists of Louw

Schmidt (Brother Leader Tread KTM) who

experienced an injury-ridden season, but

finished seventh overall, six points behind

Flanagan and only one point ahead of

Jaycee Nienaber (Super Moose KTM) with

Charan Moore (Live Lesotho Yamaha),

Wilhelm Schönfeldt (BCR Arrow Yamaha

Racing) and Ruan Smith (KTM Centurion

Liqui Moly Racing) all on the same points,

eight points behind Nienaber.

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Stefan van

Deventer

(Bidvest Blu

Cru Yamaha

Racing)

In the OR1 Championship the gap

between Branch and Gilbert, who could

not complete the opening round due to a

crash, was even smaller as only six points

separated them with Purdon, who could

only not finish the final round, rounding

off the podium after three earlier podium

results. Ruan Potgieter (KTM) finished

fourth, a single point ahead of Schmidt

who fought back after crashing at the

opening round and not scoring points on

the second day in Botswana.

The OR2 title was also only completely

signed off at the final event with

Swanepoel taking his second national offroad

title leading Mahoney by 12 points

with Gareth Cole (KTM) finishing third, but

only two points ahead of Smith who had

some breathing space over Nienaber, who

competed in OR1 at the final round, in

fifth place.

Everything could have gone right or

wrong for both the OR3 class leader,

Flanagan, or second placed Moore at

the final event and eventually it went

wrong for both. Flanagan earned the

title after a season that not only included

four victories, but also various visits to

the hospital due to injuries. Despite not

completing the final round, a victory

Kyle Flanagan

(Bidvest Blu Cru

Yamaha)

and two more runner-up results secured

Moore’s second place, 13 points behind

the winner, while Schönfeldt, who broke

his leg halfway through the season,

persevered to finish in third place, only

four points behind Moore.

He had Ian Rall (KTM) on his rear wheel

in fourth place, eight points astray while

a mere four points separated Rall from

Haydn Cole (KTM) in fifth place. The

winner of the last round, Taki Bogiages

www.motosport.co.za

(KTM) managed a sixth place in the

standings after injuries during the season.

In the High School Championship, Stefan

van Deventer (Bidvest Blu Cru Yamaha

Racing) was leading the standings with

four victories after the first events when

he had a big scare at the penultimate

event. A crash saw him not finishing the

race and losing his lead to Juan-Pierre

de Villiers (Q-KON EMD Basefit Racing

KTM) who had a very consistent season.

The defending champion fought back

and claimed his second consecutive

High School title with a victory at the final

round with De Villiers the runner-up, a

mere three points ahead of third-placed

Maarten van Jaarsveld (Doorzone Bikers

Warehouse Husqvarna), who finished on

the podium five times.

Ryan Pelser (KTM) started the season

in the 125cc Class that was disbanded

after the first event. He was moved to

the High School championship where he

stood his man despite competing with the

smallest motorcycle and finished on the

podium twice. He is fourth in the class,

14 points behind Van Jaarsveld and nine

points ahead of Barend Pretorius (KTM)

who could not score points at the opening

round.

Pieter Holl (KTM)

PUT... OIL IN YOUR BIKE

www.motosport.co.za


In the Senior Class, there were six

straight wins – and a huge scare after a

crash at the final race – for Juan ‘Bollie’

Van Rooyen (Brother Leader Tread KTM)

who scored a hat trick of Senior Class

Championship titles. Hentie Hanekom

(Husqvarna) finished on the podium five

times, but had to settle for second place.

He had Bruce Viljoen (Doorzone Bikers

Warehouse Husqvarna) breathing down

his neck, but despite five podium results,

an unfortunate result in Botswana saw

Viljoen finishing the season in third place,

only two points behind Hanekom. The

endurance specialist, Bruce May (Bidvest

Blu Cru Yamaha) scored consistently to

finish fourth with some breathing space to

Willem du Toit (Husqvarna) who used the

cross country season to prepare for the

2018 Dakar Rally.

The Master Class championship has been

a nail biting affair from the opening race

with defending champion, Wayne Farmer

(Doorzone Bikers Warehouse Husqvarna)

and arch rival, Pieter Holl (KTM) banging

handle bars at each event. After both

scored three victories each and finishing

the season on equal points, it boiled

down to the amount of runner-up results

which then sees Holl taking the title, his

second national cross country title after

winning the Senior Class in 2013.

Faan van Deventer (KTM) is third after

rounding off the podium at five of the

six events with Lyle Roebert (Doorzone

Bikers Warehouse Husqvarna) fourth

and track car racer, Iain Pepper (Pepson

Plastics Husqvarna) fifth in his first ever

off-road racing season.

In the Silver Class Challenge, Matthew

Coetzee and www.motosport.co.za

Ryan van Es finished the

season with the same amount of points

with Patrick Moore third.

KTM takes the coveted Manufacturer’s

Award with Husqvarna second, Yamaha

third and Sherco fourth.

In the quad category, Hannes Saaijman

(Q-KON EMD Basefit Racing KTM) had

also not secured the overall or Open

Quad titles before the final event despite

leading both. He had some trouble at the

last race, but two victories and consistent

scoring saw him claiming both titles

for the second year running. Keenan

Hammon (Yamaha), who also started the

season in the High School Class, crashed

at the Battlefields 400, but scored

consistently after that to finish second

overall, 10 points behind Saaijman

with Stef Bester (VANS Racing Division

Ross Branch (Brother

Leader Tread KTM)

Juan ‘Bollie’ Van Rooyen

(Brother Leader Tread KTM)

www.motosport.co.za


PUT... OIL ON YOUR CHAIN

www.motosport.co.za

Yamaha) in third, 17 points behind young

Hammon, after not scoring at the opening

event.

Pierre van Heerden (Honda) was the worst

affected by not finishing the last event

and dropped from second overall to the

fourth although only three points behind

Bester. Botswana rider, Motsumi Lekone

(Yamaha) also scored at five of the six

events and rounds off the top five, four

points ahead of Attie Saaijman (Q-KON

EMD Basefit Racing Yamaha) who won

both events in Botswana. Behind him

only four points separated the rest of

the top ten with Peter Walter (Can-Am

Side-by-Side) seventh, two points ahead

of both Hennie Michau Jnr (Yamaha), who

finished on the podium twice in Botswana

and Russell Ferreira (Honda) with Gideon

Jacobs (KTM) who led a few races before

running into problems, in tenth place, two

points further back.

In the Open Quad championship

Saaijman finished 27 points ahead of

Hammon who scored in the High School

championship at the opening round. Only

one point separated Hammon from Bester

in third place. Van Heerden had to settle

for the fourth place again, trailing Bester

by three points with Abraham Saaijman

rounding off the top five.

Junior Vardy (Yamaha) won the Silver

Class Challenge (Yamaha) ahead of

Fernando and Tony dos Santos (Yamaha).

Yamaha took the Manufacturer’s Award

and is followed by Honda with Can-Am

and KTM finishing on equal points behind

them Suzuki is fifth and Polaris sixth.

Hannes Saaijman (Q-KON

EMD Basefit Racing KTM)

AIR FILTERS

www.motosport.co.za


South African Girls Rule!

A couple of weeks ago, lady teams from all over the world descended on the BMW facility at Country Trax

to mud wrestle over who would represent the ladies at the GS Trophy in Mongolia next year.

The 23 ladies from 12 countries had

their work cut out – not only were the

typical BMW exercises in place, but

torrential rain made things just that

much more interesting.

Let’s put this into perspective.

Take a rather large BMW GS1200 and

try stuff that most people normally do on

your dirtbike. Now get a lady to to that.

So – no question, these very unassuming

looking gals are Tough!

In typical BMW fashion, the ladies

were treated to a real South African

experience over the 3 day event. On

the way out to Amesfoort, they stopped

in at a farm school to donate piles

of stationary. They were greeted by

singing and dancing – a great team

build and get to know each other

session.

The games commenced and the top

14 were selected, exercises like night

navigation – where you are penalized if

you stray too far from the track, changing

wheels and tyre – like boot camp, speed

tests around the Amersfoort track, riding

over tyres, Olifants loops… if you follow

the magazine, you’ll have seen what they

get up to.

Then there were six:

The top 3 female qualifiers in team

one are Ezelda van Jaarsveld (South

Africa), Julia Maguire (Australia) and

Sonia Barbot (France). Team 2 in no

particular order are Jocelin Snow (USA),

Bettina Nedel (USA) and Linda Steyn

(South Africa). They thought that they

were competing for 1 team to go, and

the games continued. but BMW had a

surprise:

This from BMW Motorrad;

We are exceptionally proud of our

super-skilled female GS riders.

Therefore, we made the decision to

have 2 female teams at the International

GS Trophy 2018 in Mongolia!

Our six winners are 1. Ezelda van

Jaasveld (South Africa); 2. Julia Maguire

(Australia); 3. Sonia Barbot (France);

4. Jocelin Snow (USA); 5. Linda Steyn

(South Africa); 6. Bettina Nedel (USA).

We are really looking forward to

seeing you all again in June 2018.

Get the full scoop at gstrophy.com

64 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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Here’s an extract from Linda Steyn

Boddington – one of the most

unassuming people you will ever meet

on her selection:

What an amazing experience - the BMW

GS Trophy 2017 International Female

Qualifier!! The dream was Mongolia and the

goal was achieved!!

Building obstacles in the back yard,

traveling to all the training weekends, never

having a weekend off for months on end!!

Ezelda Van Jaarsveld, it was phenomenal

to train with you! You knew exactly when

your short legged friend would struggle

with a side stand and when I looked

around for help, you were there to kick

in the side stand!! Thanks for making

training fun: e.g the teasing that I shouldn’t

be sitting through and obstacle (when I

was standing)! Mongolia is going to be

soooo much fun!! Going to be fantastic

experiencing the Trophy with you!! Callie

Steyn, for being there with Ezelda when

Joe worked away from home and always

being willing to be the sweeper behind me!

It was such a compliment when a couple

of weeks before the finals you said that

sweeping behind us was boring because

we didn’t need help through the obstacles!!

To all the riding buddies for always

being willing to ride with us!! Pierre van der

Meulen, Christelle Van Der Meulen, Theo

Van Niekerk, Jaap van Hofwegen, Eugene

Fourie, Colin Morris. Tanya van Niekerk,

Corlien Morris, Lijanta Fourie, your support

was so special!!

To all the other GS Ladies who started

the journey at the start of the year (to many

to tag) keep practicing and dreaming, it’s

worth it on so many levels!

To all the training instructors and

coaches that assisted - thank you so

much!!! CountryTrax Jan du Toit, Leonard

Van Greunen, Gert Becker (to name a few),

Thomas Böhm, Johan Gray.

Morag Campbell, what you did for the SA

GS ladies this year was / is spectacular!!

Thanks soo much, you helped pave the

rocky road for us!!

To #BavarianMotorcycles, Roger and

Sharon, thank you so much for the massive

continued support!!

To all the other sponsors #DONJOY

for the knee braces and #Guardrisk

for the insurance sponsor of the bikes.

GPS4AFRICA Pauli Massyn, Bruce

INT. GS TROPHY FEMALE TEAM QUALIFYING.

OVERVIEW OF PARTICIPANTS - 1.

INT. GS TROPHY FEMALE TEAM QUALIFYING.

Camila Mejía, 31

Dr. GrittAhrens, 49

Marion Linder, 44

Medellín

Calw (nearStuttgart)

Bad Tölz

OVERVIEW OF PARTICIPANTS - 2.

Yoshida Mieko, 51

Nagoya

Australia

Andrea Box, 26

Melbourne

-> 27. Geburtstag am 13.11

Colombia

Japan

UnitedKingdom

Kirsty Hodges, 31

Turnbridge Wells nearLondon)

(

Julia Maguire, 33

Melbourne

Ai Mizutani , 22

Nagoya

PetaLouise Hodgkinson, 48

London

ValérieHéroux, 44

Louise Mitchel,54

Saint-Laurent, Montreal, QuébecBramton, Ontario (Nähe Toronto)

Germany

LeticiaBenitez, 45

Mexico City

Bettina Nedel, 51

Colorado

Canada

Mexico

USA

McDonald #Motorradical - thank you!!

To the Country Trax team - thanks

for making the final such an amazing

experience Jan, Stefan Boshoff, Gert,

Herman Kirstein, Aldo van der Walt, Behan

Boshoff, Derick van Rensburg, Marchant,

Keith, John Briscoe (also hopefully I haven’t

missed anyone).

To the ladies joining me in Mongolia,

let the fun begin! Ezelda van Jaarsveld

Julia Maguire Sonia Perso, Bettina Nedel,

Jocelin Veilleux Snow!!

It’s going to be fun!

Watch this space!

Stephanie Schinkel, 31

Mexico City

JocelinSnow, 46

California

Jessica Leyne, 28

Ostende, Belgien

Malaysia

Khai Zabidin, 47

Kuala Lumpur

Dr. Linda Steyn, 48

Pretoria

China

Sun Renhui27

Nanjing,Jiangsu(nearShanghai)

France

South Africa

XiaominLi, 30

Nanjing, Jiangsu(nearShanghai)

Sonia Barbot, 33

Montpellier

Thailand

Wanwisa Phirom, 33

Chiang Mai

Ezelda van Jaarsveld, 39

Pretoria

-> 40. Geburtstag am 16.11.

66 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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Honda’s 3 wheel Kamikaze Machine

THE ATC 250

Here is a little piece of motorcycle history. Before there were Quads, there were 3 wheelers.

After riding this one, we are not surprised that they were banished into the annals of history…

For sale. Honda ATC 250 3-wheeler with quite a lot of history…

That caught our eye – we contacted

the seller – who turned out to be Gary

Whitehouse of Dirtbike Fanatics fame and

asked whether we could perhaps check

the bike out. He agreed and we all met

under the trees at the rather smelly Terra

Topia Track near Fourways.

Gary has a bit of history with this bike.

When he worked at Midmacor Honda all

those years ago, he modified the bike so

that his colleague and Quadriplegic Rider

Eric Buckle could join them on outrides.

Many adventures were enjoyed. When

Eric passed, the ATC was donated to the

motorcycle museum in Deneysville. They,

in turn have sold it along – to Gary almost

30 years later.

How’s that for a Story?

The 1981 ATC250R was the first highperformance

three-wheeler, featuring full

suspension, a 248 cc air cooled twostroke

engine, a five-speed transmission

with manual clutch, and a front disc brake.

Here is what the bike was all about. We

could not have said it any better.

By “Super Hunky” Rick Siemen who lived

through the era of some super frightening

off-road inventions: this is an excerpt from

his book Monkey Butt. It’s a great read,

look it up sometime.

The All- Terrain Cycle, or ATC, was

introduced by Honda to let people who

didn’t have the skills to balance a regular

two-wheeled bike ride in the dirt. Cute

little buggers, the ATCs sold like crazy.

Then savvy people started noticing that

they handled like a shopping cart loaded

with bowling balls with one locked front

wheel going down a flight of stairs.

People started doing wonderful things like

riding over their own legs and biffing over

the bars when the things got into a highspeed

wobble-you know, anything over 20

mph. Suspension on these early threewheelers?

Nothing. Zip. Nada. Zero. Just

three balloon tyres were there to take the

impacts.

As the years passed, the ATVs got more

and more powerful and they gave them

forks and shocks. This let the unstable

triangle wallow around, as well as defy

the laws of physics when trying to turn.

The rest is history. Three-wheelers are no

longer being made. However, be warned!

They’re still out there, wiggling and

lurching around the trails and sandpits of

America…

68 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


Yup –it’s true.

Cornering is more challenging than with

a four-wheeled machine because leaning

into the turn is even more important, to

counterbalance the weight and keep the

machine stable. Operators may roll over if

caution isn’t used at high – or in our case low

speeds.

Hell, just trying to ride a circle, the rear wheel

lifts…

The front end of three-wheelers obviously has

a single wheel, making it lighter, and flipping

backwards is a definite hazard, especially when

climbing hills. Three-wheelers take more time

to learn to ride properly than other machines

and require a different style that others as well;

such as leaning to the inside of the turn and

steering with the throttle. The key is to break

traction with the rear tyres and “power slide”.

And don’t think that because there is only one

wheel up front you can put your feet down.

These things had a nasty habit of riding up the

back of your legs…

Suspension is, indeed supplied mostly by the

balloon tyres. The 200cc two stroke engine

still sounds and goes brilliantly in a straight

line, open the throttle and wheelies are

really simple – and the brakes work well, but

don’t even think about turning, chances are

excellent that you will tip over onto your ass!

Three-wheelers can still be built and sold by

American manufacturers if any choose to build

them. But thankfully – no-one is doing it.

It’s difficult to believe that these things sold

so well.

By todays quad standards they are – well

downright flippen terrifying. But it’s still a really

interesting machine – and this one brought

great joy to someone who would otherwise

not have been able to ride.

Kindly supplied by Dirtbike Fanatics – 083-

459-5050

Hardly a shock -

the tyres took the

punishment...

Guys used to race

these... gulp.

Forward kickstart. air-cooled 2-stroke 250.

Disc brake up front

So - you need 3 ramps to load...


THE FUN

THE 2018 KTM 4T ENDURO LINEUP AND THE CARBURETTED 2-STROKES…

We took the kids for a Li’l outride to Rhino Park the other day and saw a long queue of peeps standing under

the Trax KTM gazebo. We mooched across to have a looksee and discovered that they had brought along the 2018

range of KTM enduro machines. Words: Glenn Foley

70 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


We have not yet had

the opportunity to

ride them – so we

bribed them with

some boerewors

rolls – (prepared by

engelsmanne nogal), and convinced them

to stay for a couple of hours after their day

so that we could take a spin and get some

pics… Don’t be fooled by the plastics,

Trax has fitted some of their own signature

plastics to the new machines.

What was really lekker was the fact that

they had some of their national Off-road

racers on hand, along with their sales guys

– so there were plenty of volunteers to put

bums into saddles.

We worked a great little loop through the

trees and quarries and took each bike for a

loop or two to get a feel for them.

Changes for 2018: Four Stroke.

KTM’s line of three EXC-F dual sport

motorcycles are back—a 500, 350, and

250—with a few updates to make these

motorcycles even more appealing.

NOTE: there was no 250 on demo for

the day.

Here are the essential facts. The Fours:

The WP fork gets updated on all three

2018 KTM EXC-Fs. The WP Xplor 48

inverted split front fork gets new outer

tubes. This is designed to allow it to react

more quickly, reduce stiction (ie the forks

slide better), and lower weight. Also, KTM

has stiffened the settings to appeal to

more aggressive riders.

KTM firmed up the linkage-free WP

shock. This year, the WP Xplor PDS shock

gets more aggressive settings to reduce

bottoming, while still offering a progressive

feel without using maintenance-intensive

linkage.

Mud riders will like the new radiator

guards. They’re designed to improve airflow

in the slop.

The EXC-F motors are closely related to

the SX-F models, but there are important

differences. The 350 and 250 have the same

bore and stroke as the motocrossers, while

the 500 gets an additional 60cc over the 450

thanks to a longer stroke. Also, the EXC-

F’s 42mm throttle body is two millimeters

smaller than the motocross counterpart.

A six-speed transmission makes sure the

2018 KTM EXC-F bikes are always on the

cam. In addition to a six-speed tranny and

DDS clutch, the EXC-Fs also have an X-ring

chain.

DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017 7 1


Riding the bikes:

With a range like this, you need to

figure out what you’d like to do with

your bike. Are you a rock hopper who

enjoys events like the Roof? Then you

need to look at the 2-strokes maybe.

Do you enjoy fast open track like

GOC racing. Maybe the 300, 350 or

the 450 – or even the 500. Or are you

a trail guy or girl who enjoys a mixup

of everything? In this case most of

the smaller cc bikes will be perfect.

Desert racer? The 500 fits the

bill. Are you a beginner – or are you

experienced?

Is this going to be your only bike –

or are you lucky enough to have two

or three bikes for all of the different

things that you want to do. Each of

these bikes is distinctly different with

it’s own personality.

That is the beauty of a brand like

KTM, it seems as if they have a bike

for everyone…

We started on the big one…

The KTM 500 EXC-F: Not for sissies.

It is a monster. Make no mistake –

and riding this one gave us exactly

the same feel as last years bike. It

makes very refined power – but it

is still – a monster. The 500 EXC-F

delivers an enormous amount of

power, fed by the Keihin engine

management system with 42mm

throttle body and new injector

positioning, allowing better throttle

response and ability to control the

big-bore fire-breather better.

BUT and here comes the but…

This is also one enormously

capable bike that in the right hands

can do literally anything. It’s an

amazing blend of agility and finesse

– like a heavyweight boxer wearing

a TuTu. Make sense. It’s big, bold,

fast and comfy but she is also pretty

agile and quick on her feet. Go into a

corner fast though – and that’s when

you realise that you are on a big cc

machine.

She pushes you around a bit. The

tighter single trail we ride through the

forests really didn’t feel like hard work

on the 500 EXC-F like we thought

it might be, however the handling

really did shine on the open flowing

trails, using the torque of the bike in a

higher gear that took the edge off the

power.

Aim for the steepest hill and

she wanders up without breaking

a sweat, open wide on the gravel

trails and she’ll rip your arms out as

she accelerates to Mach 4. It’s so

fast that we know of people who

have switched from a 690 to a 500

and who are as happy as Pigs in

Palestine. The down side of this is

that the 500 has far shorter service

intervals.

On the 500 you can still ride

with your buddies on their smaller

dirtbikes. Just not all day up

and down the rocks… and – we

guarantee that you will drill everyone

in the fast stuff.

This is one impressive machine…

72 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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74 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017

The KTM 450 EXC-F:

If you are a regular reader, you’ll remember that we

used last years 450 on the Tri nations event – flowing

, fast sandy trails through the Makatini Flats and we

loved it! The new one is very similar – in fact close your

eyes and open the throttle it still has that great user

friendly feeling. The power delivery is easy and can be

made more manageable by using the mapping switch.

It’s very different to the 500 though. Where you can idle

along on the 500, the 450 LOVES to be revved. It feels

like a race bike when you whip it in anger.

Climbing hills for example takes a lot more rider input

on the 450.

KTM 450 EXC-F engine is a powerhouse, what’s not

to like about the new engine that they gave it last year?

The single overhead cam engine has enough power for

any rider and can be tamed down with the mapping/

traction control switch. The 450 EXC-F engine is given

life by a Keihin engine management system with

electronic fuel injection. It features a new 42mm throttle

body and different injector position, the response to

this animal is much quicker and direct than the older

models.

Putting power to the ground is a six-speed gearbox

with a very refined, precise feel. This is a big part of why

the 450 EXC-F is so much fun to ride. There is power

on tap and it keeps pulling right from the bottom all the

way through the gears.

The bike feels like you can move it around when and

where you want, it’s not like you’re pushing a light twostroke

around, but it’s definitely different to the 500. A

lot more aggressive. The suspension is really plush and

forgiving, the bike floats well across rough small rocky

sections and is really predicable.

If you are into bigger cc bikes, and you like to go

really fast, then this one will tick all the boxes.


The KTM 350 EXC-F: A bike for everyone.

We genuinely have no idea why the Jap

manufacturers have not looked at this

engine configuration. The beauty of a 350

is the fact that you don’t need to rev it like a

250. And the torque is just so user friendly.

KTM has mated this powerhouse to a

chassis that really works. It’s quite easy to

understand why these bikes are so popular.

We wouldn’t like to bet anyone but we

reckon that on this tightish loop that we rode,

the 350 is probably quicker than the big 450

– simply because it is so much easier to ride

and it is so manouvreable. There is nothing

brutal about it at all, just easy, useable power

right through the rev range.

KTM’s philosophy with the 350

powerplant was to create “250 agility with

450 power,” and as far as we can tell they

hit the target. There’s no wringing the 350

out to stay in the power like you might

do with a 250, and yet it’s docile enough

for riders who might not feel ready for the

monstrously torquey 450 or 500 EXC. It’s

just such a well-balanced motorcycle…

Narrow, tall, light and nimble with a

marvelous spread of very useable power…

2018 KTM four stroke Specs.

Engine: Single-cylinder four-stroke

Displacement: 500: 510cc, 450: 449.3cc, 350: 350cc

Valve Train: 4-valve DOHC w/ finger followers

Fueling: Keihin EFI w/ 42mm throttle body

Ignition: Keihin EMS

Cooling: Liquid

Lubrication: Pressure w/ two oil pumps

Transmission: 6-speed

Clutch: Wet multi-disc DDS-Clutch w/ Brembo hydraulics

Final Drive: 5/8- x 1/4-inch X-ring chain

Frame: Chromoly double-cradle

Handlebar: Neken tapered aluminum

Front suspension: Fully adjustable 48mm WP Xplor fork; 11.8 inches

Rear suspension: Fully adjustable WP Xplor PDS shock; 12.2 inches

Front wheel: 1.6 x 21” Giant Rear wheel: 2.15 x 18” Giant

Front brake: 260mm disc Rear brake: 220mm disc

Wheelbase: 58.3 inches

Seat height: 96cm

Fuel tank capacity: 8.5 litres

Dry weight: 500: 108.862KG. 350: 108KG’s. 450: 109.5kg’s

76 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


The two’s. Essential Facts.

The 2-Strokes:

In KTM model language, bikes that have

the “XC-W” suffix are more trail-oriented

than those without the W. So, the 300 and

250XC-W both have cushy suspension,

wide-ratio gearboxes and a smooth power

delivery. Both have the WP Xplor coil-spring

fork and PDS rear suspension without

linkage. Unlike their relatives in the Husky

TE line, KTMs have Brembo brakes. KTM

afficionado’s are slavering at the fact that

KTM now has a fuel injected 2 stroker –

but… Don’t forget that they are still the

market leaders in normally aspirated models.

In a nutshell, KTM has updated the

carburetors, suspension settings and

tubes and the bikes all get the redesigned

radiator guards. KTM has also fitted new

CDI’s for improved starting.

All of the bikes share the stuff that is

kinda non-negotiable in this day and age

– Electric start, side stands and little digital

displays so you know what you are up to.

The KTM 300 XC-W

We will repeat this is not the TPI. But you

cannot ignore the fact that this is one of

the most successful bikes on the planet.

Ever. We might be wrong but we think that

the one we rode on the day is actrually a

2017… trax hs just sorted the carburetion.

Even with a carburetor. It’s light, fast,

agile and most importantly it makes such

lekker torque for a 2-stroke. This is the

reason that it is so successful at events like

the Roof.

The chug-a-lug makes it so easy to ride

slowly, but lean towards caution – it can be

a fire-breathing monster when you open

the throttle wide – she tears off at Mach 4

and will make your eyes water.

The bike underwent a few changes

for the 2017 year model and there were

a few grumbles about carburetion. For

2018 this has all been sorted with updated

38mm Mikuni TMX carburetor settings for

smoother and more controllable power

delivery. The carburetor body has also been

turned 7° to reduce fuel overflow.

Guys this is still a fantastic all-round bike.

In face it will be really interesting to see

how it’s fuel injected sibling goes when we

ride it just after the Roof Of Africa later this

month. There will be a full feature on that

bike in next months issue. It’s is so easy to

understand why the KTM300XC-W is a firm

favourite among enduro riders.

A fantastic option. Especially for more

experienced riders.

2018 300 XC-W Specs.

Engine: Single Cylinder, 2-Stroke

Displacement: 293.2 cc

Starter: Electric, Lithium Ion 12 V 2 Ah / Kickstarter

Fuel system: Mikuni TMX 38 Carburetor

Lubrication: Premix 60:1

Cooling: Liquid

Lubrication: Pressure w/ two oil pumps

Transmission: 6 Gears, wide ratio

Clutch: Wet Multi-Disc DDS Clutch, Brembo Hydraulics

Frame: Central Double-Cradle Type 25CrMo4 Steel

Handlebar: Neken tapered aluminum

Front suspension: WP Xplor USD Ø 48mm

Rear suspension: WP Xplor PDS Monoshock

Suspension travel: 300 mm / 11.8 in; 310 mm / 12.2 in

Front/Rear brakes: Disc Brake 260 mm; 220 mm

Front/Rear rims: 1.60 x 21” / 2.15 x 18” Giant

Front/Rear tyre: 80/100-21”/ 110/100-18”

Wheelbase: 1,482mm ± 10 mm / 58.3 ± 0.4 in

Ground Clearance: 370mm / 14.6 in

Seat height: 960 mm / 37.8 in

Fuel tank capacity: Approx: 10 l

Dry weight: Approx: 100 kg

DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017 77


The 250 XC-W

This was the bike that provided the most

fun for the afternoon. It is just so easy to

ride, without getting boring. Light, fast,

agile, nimble – and we did say fun?

Last year, KTM redesigned everything

about the motor. It got a gear-driven

counterbalancer. The electric start was

relocated to an area under the motor, and

it lost weight. The XC-W chassis is a little

different from anything else in the KTM

dirtbike lineup.

Such a well-balanced machine, were we

in the market for a 2-stroke we’d probably

lean towards the 250 as an everyday

machine – and then we’d go racing on the

weekend.

It simply does everything so well with

more than sufficient torque and it still has

that exciting 250 2-stroke feeling without

getting out of control. The motor is really

smooth. The counterbalancer snuffs out

almost all the vibration that we used to

associate with two-strokes. In addition

to the anti-vibe aspect of the balancer,

the balancer shaft lends the motor more

spinning inertia, just like a heavier flywheel

would. This explains the excellent torque

characteristics. This bike is a rock hopper

that you can ride REALLY fast. Kapish?

The KTM is the lightest bike in its class.

That fact is obvious when you ride it. It

does make you a bit cocky though… like

you can get out of any situation you put

yourself in. Drop down a sheer cliff into a

ravine you’ve never explored?

Sure! It will work out fine. The XC-W

excels in extreme situations. Having electric

start only makes you braver...

It’s light, flickable, compact and just so

much fun… Go and ride one. You’ll see

what we mean.

KTM XCW 250 Specs.

Engine: Single Cylinder, 2-Stroke

Displacement: 249 cc

Bore/Stroke: 64.4 / 72 mm

Starter: Electric, Lithium Ion 12 V 2 Ah / Kickstarter

Fueling system: Mikuni TMX 38 Carburetor

Cooling: Liquid

Lubrication: Premix 60:1

Transmission: 6 Gears, wide ratio

Clutch: Wet Multi-Disc DDS Clutch, Brembo Hydraulics

Final Drive: 13:50

Frame: Central Double-Cradle Type 25CrMo4 Steel

Handlebar: Neken tapered aluminum

Front suspension: WP Xplor USD Ø 48mm

Rear suspension: WP Xplor PDS Monoshock

Suspension travel: 300 mm / 11.8 in; 310 mm / 12.2 in

Front/Rear brakes: Disc Brake 260 mm; 220 mm

Front/Rear rims: 1.60 x 21” / 2.15 x 18” Giant

Front/Rear tyre: 80/100-21”/ 110/100-18”

Wheelbase: 1,482mm ± 10 mm / 58.3 ± 0.4 in

Ground Clearance: 370mm / 14.6 in

Seat height: 960 mm / 37.8 in

Fuel tank capacity: Approx: 10 l

Dry weight: Approx: 100 kg

78 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


The 150 Specs.

Engine: Single Cylinder, 2-Stroke Displacement: 143.99 cc Starter: Electric, Lithium Ion 12 V 2

Ah / Kickstarter Fuel system: Mikuni TMX 38 Carburetor Lubrication: Premix 60:1

Cooling: Liquid Transmission: 6 Gears, wide ratio Clutch: Wet Multi-Disc Clutch, Brembo

Hydraulics Frame: Central Double-Cradle Type 25CrMo4 Stee Front suspension: WP Xplor USD

Ø 48mm Rear suspension: WP Xplor PDS Monoshock Suspension travel: 300 mm / 11.8 in;

310 mm / 12.2 in Front/Rear brakes: Disc Brake 260 mm; 220 mm

Front/Rear rims: 1.60 x 21” / 2.15 x 18” Giant Front/Rear tyre: 80/100-21”/ 110/100-18”

Wheelbase: 1,482mm ± 10 mm / 58.3 ± 0.4 in Ground Clearance: 370mm / 14.6 in

Seat height: 960 mm / 37.8 in Fuel tank capacity: Approx: 10 l Dry weight: Approx: 91.5 kg

KTM’s Baby, the 150.

KTM’s 150cc models are filling a small-but-important

place in the motorcycle market. A half-step between

a 125cc two-stroke and a 250cc four-stroke, they

have the weight and feel of the former and the power

of the latter.

A couple of issues back you’d have read the

feature we did on the 150. At that stage we were

trying to figure out why KTM built it in the first place.

It replaced the venerable 200 last year, but has it

filled that bike shoes – or tyres in this case?

Well, it won the Bronze and silver class at The

Roof in its debut year, so that says a lot. It’s not mind

boggling in terms of performance, but it is a very

light, nimble, capable machine. That’s exactly what

beginner riders – and some of the rock hoppers that

we know, are looking for.

It’s real fun to ride.

KTM seems to have sorted some of that fluffy

feel on the new model, light, tall with great ground

clearance. After the bigger beasty’s we found that we

has to adjust our riding style on this one – especially

with the steeper slopes and things. The smaller

capacity means that with the lesser torque, you need

to be conscious about what gear you are in.

Make sense? So, you can get away with climbing

a hill in third on the 250, but on the 150, you tend to

stall. Use the box more and she’ll go anywhere.

The chassis feels light and nimble with really

impressive suspension and brakes to match.

This bike is deceptively fast, fun to ride, light and

nimble - a great intro to the world of riding enduro.

These bikes are all at Trax KTM – (012) 111-0190

We’ll be riding the Fuel injected bike as you read

this – so full feature on that in our January issue.


By Rick Sosebee.

2018 Polaris RZR XP Turbo EPS DYNAMIX Edition

TRAIL SMART

Smart suspension = brilliant machine

If you look at the recent record of

improvements to high speed and

superior suspension travel SxS machines

currently offered, the overwhelming trend

might stand out as horsepower upgrades.

There is a time and place for power and

although we all usually long for more, one

company has begun a fight on harnessing

handling for high-power side-by-sides.

They want to make sure all that power is

controllable for the driver, helping to build

confidence the entire time. Polaris has

had a team of engineers working for over

two years to make shock adjustment and

control less of an inconvenience and more

of a direct, simple function controlled by

the way you the owner, drive your ride.

This new 2018 Polaris RZR XP Turbo

Eps Dynamix model comes with an

intelligent computer and specific built

shocks by FOX that will not only create

a better ride but a better overall handling

vehicle. We had our opportunity to get

a little more familiar with this system in

the Mojave Desert just outside Primm,

Nevada on a hot and dry day. Luckily,

with the wind flowing through the cab, we

could focus on the newest engineering

marvel and nothing was getting between

the rough terrain and us.


Smart shocks

Just to be clear,

this Polaris RZR is

an XP 1000 (925cc) fuel

injected turbo charged

power plant just like

any other RZR and the

running gear is all the

same except for a slight

gain in weight of roughly

9.5kg or so. This unit

does have the full Ride

Command dash as well

and a little dash or two of

silver in the graphics. The

new Dynamix Active Suspension is the

key technology here, and it is a big divider

from the rest of the RZR pack.

This was a true collaboration, as FOX

built the shock and Polaris designed and

developed the operating control software.

It operates via seven key inputs transfer

information like steering angle and throttle

80 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


application to the onboard computer. This

computer will then decipher this information

at a rate of approximately 200 times per

second. The information is culminated in

brief form on the Ride Command Dynamix

Visualizer screen so the driver can see how

this system is affecting the ride. On the Ride

Command Dynamix screen you will notice

information like steeringwheel position

as well as shock firmness on each wheel

shown on the screen. As for any real-time

rider input, there are only (at least for now)

three selections that allow the driver to

switch the machine’s suspension to adapt to

riding style and conditions.

This doesn’t allow total control for the

driver but it does give you a preset shock

positioning that adjusts to the trails or

your style a bit more. When you think

about this system it is simply this; Polaris

has essentially designed this new valving

device and software to regulate fluid control

through the shock.

The three settings that are controlled by the

driver are Comfort, Sport and Firm. As we

left the home base we had the car set in

comfort mode on the dash-mounted switch.

This gives the casual rider a little more

comfort, softening up the suspension for

general trail riding speeds or terrain.

Continually monitoring the ride is

the onboard computer and it will interact

with the shocks as needed even in these

first of three modes.

Set it and forget it

Just a few miles into our trip we felt this

setting was pretty comfortable but as the

group’s speed increased it became a bit

too soft. And on the fly, we simply flipped

the switch to Sport mode. The Sport mode

or the Sport setting on the switch is a

middle ground or maybe an average ride

setting that still gives a plush feel but is set

up to adjust the shocks a little firmer and

control the body roll even more. This would

become our favorite setting for the day and

it seemed to fit the speeds we had driven

during our ride. The larger unexpected

washouts or ditches in our trail seemed

to get soaked up surprisingly well by

the suspension making our confidence level

higher with every encounter. That’s when

we think found a limit of sorts to the Sport

setting compression stroke.

I am not sure if the suspension actually


ottomed but it was a pretty good bump

on a higher speed section, possibly a

rock or raised center in the trail. It was

not very far up the trail that we thought

we would try the firm setting because the

trails were getting a bit rougher and the

pace had increased a bit as well. Keep in

mind we are making these changes from

the driver’s seat via a switch on the dash

without stopping on the trail at all.

This setting is really noticeable as it gets

stiff into corners effectively controlling

body roll as well. The benefit of this setting

was discovered in one particular event

when we came over a rise in the trail at

speed only to find out that the trail has

gone to crap in front of us. At 80kph in

slight dust with your foot on the floor it

was a “stand on it and pray” moment.

As quick as we could form a thought of

“man this should hurt pretty good,” we

could tell the shocks took the hit for us

and we’re still thankful. It was not pleasant

but it could have been much worse

without the controller adjusting the

shocks in split seconds for us.

After taking the days ride in, I

found that for our somewhat

limited ride speed during the

guided adventure as well as

the comfort I desired, the Sport

setting worked well for me.

The words escape me for how

I feel about this system entirely

so far. I can say that this single

advancement will begin to forever

change the way we look at suspension in

the SXS industry. I am also not sure how

consumers will be able to relate to this, as

most never touch their suspension period,

much less with a system that controls

almost every aspect of it.

The Verdict

I hope this will begin to help

the riding public realize

that you can have a

more fine-tuned ride in

varying terrain if you

simply take the time

to understand

your suspension. This will revolutionize our

industry and bring that extra wow factor

to a machine already packed with loyal

buyers. It’s something of pure intrigue

because it is just the start to a whole new

finely tuned ride experience.

82 DIRT & TRAIL MAGAZINE DECEMBER 2017


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