Radek solo 2012 Baja 1000 on 990R
Well I might as well throw my hat in the ring.
I'm going to solo this years Baja 1000 on my 990. I already did it on a dirt bike a couple of years ago on a 2 man team, so I figure this should be a whole different challenge. This year is the point to point which I wanted to do and I've been enjoying my 990 much more than my dirt bikes so might as well see what it can do.
If the race is closer to 1000 miles this year, I figure I can do it between 30 and 40 hours if it goes smooth.
Last time I did it we shot a small documentary Road To Baja which followed our effort.
Here is the 45 minute show we did last time...
I'm contemplating on shooting one this year too with the difference being that we would follow multiple solo efforts instead of just one. So if you're a solo let me know if you're interested in being part of it.
Any advice on racing the big bike, besides dont? :)
Have Bob bell set up the forks and Shock for you.
He worked with KTM alot on the BIG Bikes.
You might want to look into getting some good wheels.
The scraping on the wheel was from beating it back so I could finish the ride, it was and inch bigger.
If they run the same course as 2010,(we are assuming they are), it will be closer to 1100 miles.
Should be fun ridding a 990 through the 100 mile long whoop sections on the southern part of the course,(Bob Bell to the rescue!)
The only woops are south of SF for about 45 miles.
I would love to ride a 990 in this race.
But I think I will be riding my 640 Rally bike insted.
As for your wheels: I use John Anderson ( owner )
CALL : at DUBYA
He can bulid you a GREAT set of Wheels Or Bulk your stock hubs up with Better spokes and DID or Excell Rims
he ran QTM for years and also ran White Bros for years
Or you could Call Woodys wheels.
Sorry I have no Contact info
I wood also get a Comfort Seat from Seat Concepts
Call: Robert (owner)
GREAT seat for have the cost and wait time as Renacco
I'm think I'll do woody's A60 and 2 rears.
I'm wondering about rear rubber. In the soft/woops it's really nice to have some knobs to tractor through, but on 90% or the rest its harder dirt/rock so something that ill last and have more contact. Perhaps a 908RR is a good compromise.
Woodys wheels are great but not cheep.
I would run Talon cush hubs and DID Dirt Star 215X18 Rims
As for Bob Bell he did all the testing with KTM when Scott Harden was running the USA Dakar offroad team.
As for James at Superplush I have never used his stuff.
But I have uesd Bob Bell's in Mexico at the 1000 point to point and won!!!
So one of the first things I am looking at is analyzing our first race to see what went wrong....
We did it in 2008, team of 2, in 30 class. This was a loop race and it was short 630 miles. We finished the race in 19:53 so that put as at about 32 mph total average. Seems slow. But here are some of the things that happened....
Our ktm 540 blew up 2 days before the race so we ended up racing a tired 450exc. This slowed us down quite a bit. In the woops it did not have enough power, and i remember on the salt flats being passed by one guy because I had to have it in 5th gear as 6th would not pull.
We screwed up on the second pit as I finished the section a bit faster and we were not ready. We were supposed to put on lights and new rubber in the daylight right before the woops but we just kept going. Not smart riding the whole san felipe section on toasted tires.
This caused us to have to switch everything at night and we did not have any lights so we were doing it in front of our truck headlights. This pit stop was over an hour long!
Then I broke down on the east coast and it took me almost an hour to get going again. At that point the fog had rolled in and our pace was reduced to a crawl. Also the break down took a lot our of me mentally. Giving up all those spots after battling for them so hard was discouraging.
So best case scenario we would have shaved 3 hours from our time easily if we weren't stupid. That would put as at an average somewhere at about 38 mph. The other factor was that I had only been riding motorbikes for 1.5 years at the time and I'm a much much better rider now.
So based on the previous race I'm thinking here are the pros/cons
Going for me
- I have 3 times the riding experience than i did then
- It's a faster course
- I have raced and ridden the baja several times since then
- I'm racing a 990r which for non woops riding will be more comfortable than a dirtbike
Going agains me
- I'll be doing it solo instead of with a partner
- the race is probably 400 miles longer than the last one
- I'll be racing a 990r instead of a dirtbike which will be tough in the woops
I'm actually thinking that the 990 will benefit me more than a dirtbike. As a big buy ( 6'4" 280 lbs ) a dirtbike is not fun to ride for long distances, and my size allows me to handle the big bike better in technical areas. I think if I can get through the woops ok, on the majority of the course I'll be less fatigued on the 990 than a small bike.
So if the course is 1050 miles...the numbers would be this
Best case: 38 mph that would put it at 27 hours.
Probable case: 30 mph that would put it at 35 hours.
Adjust for baja +5 hours : 40 hours
At this point have to start thinking about sleep. I can probably make 30 hours without sleep, but after that would have to factor in some shut eye.
From all this it becomes so clear.... to finish, be consistent and keep a higher average to finish faster! Duhh!
Bob Bell/Precision Concepts did my 950 SE suspension, full revalve and I would not recommend them. I heard of his experience with the race bikes and his reputation and spent alot of time and money to get it right afterwards.
For the 950/990 suspension nothing has beat the Superplush bikes I've ridden, both SE and Adventure 950/990. I don't know his secret sauce, but it just works. Give James Sidall a call before you do anything.
Sounds like your gearing was wrong on the 450exc
What type of tires did you run?
in the loop race you should only need one Tire change unless you have a lot of wheel spin.( Back to wrong Gearing )
also NEVER put your race lights on before you run the SF woops!!!!
( if you are in the dark at that tme you are WAY behind!!!! )
This year plan a Tire Change on the 990 at LA Bay or San Ignaico and make shure you gearing in good.
Running in a higher gear makes the Tires last
I know SPS out of San Fran can set up KTM very good ,but I have not seen too many in mexico
From what I can tell PC will do a great job if you know Bob or someone refers you.
The things that he did to Crashed,( and three other buddies of mine) stuff was something I would not have expected from someone who charges so much. He found bent shims and the shim stacks did not match the other leg in the forks. It looked like they just used some shit they had lying on the bench. They were not polished like they are supposed to be either.
Just sayin if you do go PC have Baja Dad call Bob first.
here is the seat you need!!!
Seat Concepts low seat kit - NO pan, just the foam and cover, mounted and cleanly removed, sold bike, this stayed behind...used, Excellent.
This is a very comfortable seat. They call it a "Low" but I don't think it's any lower than stock. It certainly is wider and firmer - two good things.
$125 obo plus shipping
We got to rm420 after to woops loop just after it got dark in 10 hours, but the night section killed us...especially the fog.
I do not like the ED78 you can spit knobs off real fast
the silt will be a struggle on that big of a bike, I'll be following your efforts
great luck Dave
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