Off-Road Observer: 20
The Yamaha WR450F features a five valve fuel injected engine housed in a YZ250F chassis. The current model WR450F heralds the biggest change since the introduction of that first WR400F. Yamaha designers, testers and engineers have revisited the drawing board and re-invented the new WR450F from the ground up.
Enduro expert Adam Riemann shares his insight into the world of off-road, presented by Yamaha.
Winning both days was business as usual for Toby Price at rounds seven and eight of the AORC at Broadford, Victoria over the weekend, which extends his championship lead.
Saturday’s Cross Country proved to be hard and fast utilising the surrounding bush of the MX track, but dusty conditions made it all the more challenging. Ballard’s Yamaha rider Daniel Milner put in another standout performance on his YZ250F.
“I had a pretty good run considering I had bad start,” he said. “I must have been back in about 20th or so, then managed to carve through the pack into about fifth by the end of the first lap. By about the end of the second lap I’d worked up into second place behind Toby and was making good ground on him.
“We’d blown the tank out a bit on my YZ, so it was carrying just over eight-litres, which meant I only had to pit once. It was good test for the YZ too because there were some big uphill straights where I had to hang right off the back of it and keep it wedged for ages! I actually nearly had Toby there for a minute, but in the end he crossed the line about eight or so seconds in front of me.”
While fuel logistics were clinical and accurate during the three-hour Cross Country, they ultimately became Milner’s undoing during the Sprint format on Sunday.
“All was going pretty good up until the fourth sprint lap of the day,” Milner added. “We actually have a dip stick used to check the fuel level, so there’s just the right amount in the tank to get through each Sprint lap. Anyway, there was a bit of a misunderstanding as to whether or not my bike needed more fuel going into the fourth lap.
“So my old man grabbed a refuel jug to add some fuel just in case … the only problem was, the nozzle wasn’t compatible with the YZ tank so it barely dribbled any fuel into the tank. I got about half way round and she cut out on me.
“I was so pissed and let every body know about it after I pushed my bike back to the pits, then went out and won the last test of the day Outright. Not that it mattered cause I’d lost all points for the day, which puts me back in third outright for the championship behind Matty Phillips and Price. I’m still leading the E1 championship, so that’s something to be happy about I guess”
With over two-months break before the next AORC, some of our top guns are now heading for the desert as the countdown to Finke begins. Pretty safe to say that 2010 Finke champion and KTM-mounted Toby Price is the favourite for the event, but the GHR Honda Team of Todd and Jacob Smith will be ready to hold it tapped for the two 240km sprints down the track and back.
As for Yamaha, they’ve actually got themselves the Finke dark horse in last year’s runner-up, Jarrod Bewley, who’ll be mounted on a desert-spec YZ450F. Bewley learnt from the best last year, having spent many hours pre-running Finke with the Desert King, Ben Grabham and the Motorex KTM Off-Road Team.
Bewley’s since been out pre-running on two occasions with his new teammate and manager, AJ Roberts. However, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, good luck to anyone who has to try and beat Toby Price. Check this video I knocked up last week – it’ll explain everything.