I have a Tiger 800XC with ABS. I've never bothered to turn ABS off and I've taken it in several off pavement excursions. Never felt the brakes pulsating or missing or anything. Although I'm not racing a Dakar, I've taken it to 70 mph on gravel roads. Like others mentioned, when on dirt I anticipate the necessary moves and I use engine braking in combination with front and back brakes as well.
On the video of the GS going down hill, it seems there was no engine braking whatsoever. The rider could have panicked and had his clutch pulled all the way in. I bet engine braking would have helped a lot.
Like others have mentioned, it may be more important to take a class on riding off pavement, ABS or not, before venturing out there.
And yes, ABS is always better to keep it off when on dirt. But I'm too lazy for that. And I just work around the issue.
Lion BR screwed with this post 08-27-2013 at 05:52 PM