Motocross Action is a monthly publication focused on providing motocross-specific information, including bike and product tests, race coverage, technical features, personality stories and events that are both current and nostalgic.
AMA OUTDOOR NATIONAL MOTOCROSS POINT STANDINGS AFTER ROUND 8
Cooper Webb still 54 points behind Eli Tomac in the Championship standings, but his 1-1 performance moved him passed Jason Anderson into fourth place.
The 2019 Millville National started off rough with heavy rain and lightning at the Spring Creek Motocross Park. But once the lightning stopped, the show resumed only an hour later than the original start time. Eli Tomac struggled to get a good start and it was extra hard to make passes at Spring Creek because of the muddy conditions. Most of the track was one-lined and it definitely hurt Eli Tomac’s ability to charge through the pack.
2019 AMA PRO MOTOCROSS 450 NATIONAL RESULTS FROM MILLVILLE
Cooper Webb wins his first ever 450 Outdoor National Moto at the Millville National.
The 2019 Millville National has been an exciting one so far. After crazy weather fell on the Spring Creek Motocross Park, qualifying had to be adjusted and the racing schedule was delayed one hour due to lightning near the facility, but weather has cleared up and show has gotten underway! Coming into round eight of the 2019 AMA National series Eli Tomac held a 34-point lead over Marvin Musquin, but now with the wet and muddy conditions anything can happen.
Isaac Teasdale grabbed the holeshot but it was Cooper Webb who grabbed the lead after the first turn. Local Minnesota native, Henry Miller inherited the second place position and held onto it until Eli Tomac made the pass on him early in lap three. On the first lap there were five privateer riders inside the top ten, they were Isaac Teasdale, Henry Miller, John Short, Kyle Cunningham and City Schock. After ten minutes of racing Marvin Musquin was able to get into third position and Ken Roczen had moved up to 12th. In the final stretch of 450 Moto 1, Eli Tomac got close to Cooper Webb, but he wasn’t close enough to make the pass. Webb also got some help from a lap rider who held up Eli considerably on the final lap. Cooper Webb grabbed his first ever 450 National Moto win.
2019 AMA PRO MOTOCROSS 250 NATIONAL RESULTS FROM MILLVILLE
Hunter Lawrence wins 250 Moto 1 at Millville.
Coming into the the 2019 Millville National, Adam Cianciarulo had a 25-point lead over Star Racing Yamaha rider Dylan Ferrandis. The muddy conditions in Minnesota have made for a wild roller coaster ride of a day. First the heavy rain and lightning storm caused a power outage at the Spring Creek Motocross park, this took down the loud speaker system and their internet. Then, the first qualifying sessions were cancelled and the races were rescheduled to start an hour later. Finally, the racing was able to get underway and we have the results from Moto 1 right here.
Hunter Lawrence grabbed the early lead with Adam Cianciarulo in second. Alex Martin quickly moved into third and Dylan Ferrandis was fourth early in the race. The privateer KTM rider, Zane Marrett sat in ninth. Hunter Lawrence held the lead in the mud, but later in the race Adam Cianciarulo started to close the gap. As the race went on the track continued to deteriorate as the ruts and bumps got deeper and deeper with every passing lap. Cianciarulo took his goggles off and started making mistakes until finally a small mistake turned into a crash. Adam tucked the front end coming over a roller and he went down. Luckily, Adam kept his hands on the bars and he was able to pick up the bike quickly and continue the race in third place. Chase Sexton moved pass Ferrandis to inherit fourth place, but unfortunately for him, his Geico Honda expired and he wasn’t able to finish the race.
Cooper Webb was your fastest 450 qualifier at the muddy Spring Creek National.
The 2019 Millville National is off to a wet and muddy start. Heavy rain and lightning caused not only a delay for qualifying at round eight, but it also temporarily shut down the internet and the loud speakers at the Spring Creek Motocross Park. The qualifying schedule and the track have been adjusted accordingly to handle the muddy conditions. Instead of two 15-minute sessions for qualifying, the 250 and 450 A and B groups only had one session on the track and it was lengthened to 20 minutes. The steep Spring Creek hills in the middle of the track were also abbreviated due to the mud. The riders will still go up the hill and turn around, but it is only small portion of the original hills.
Cooper Webb laid down the fastest time in the 450 class with a 2:11.131. Luckily for the fans, the muddy conditions hasn’t separated the top riders as much as usual. Justin Barcia, Eli Tomac and Jason Anderson were all close behind Webb, their fastest lap times were also in the 2:11 range.
Justin Cooper qualifies first in the mud at Millville.
After receiving heavy rain this morning at the Spring Creek Motocross park, qualifying was finally able to get underway on an abbreviated track. With the steep hills now taken out, the 250 group A and B riders took to the track for one 20-minute qualifying session each. Due to the conditions, there will be no LCQ today. The top 40 riders in qualifying have transferred straight to the motos.
Justin Cooper was able to grab the top qualifying position with Chase Sexton qualifying second in his first race back. Chase suffered from heat exhaustion at the Florida National which caused him to DNF at Southwick and miss the entire Redbud National. The hometown hero, Alex Martin qualified third with Dylan Ferrandis and Adam Cianciarulo fourth and fifth.
DEAN WILSON SIGNS WITH THE FACTORY ROCKSTAR HUSQVARNA TEAM FOR THE 2020 SEASON
Dean Wilson is very happy to be back with the Rockstar Husqvarna team for the 2020 Monster Energy Supercross and AMA Pro Motocross seasons.
Dean Wilson has gone back and forth between being a factory rider and privateer rider over the last few years. Once he made the jump to the 450 class, Dean spent the 2015 and 2016 seasons with the Red Bull KTM Factory team, but unfortunately he struggled with injuries both years and the team didn’t resign him for 2017. Dean began the 2017 Supercross season as a privateer on a Yamaha 450 before Christophe Pourcel left the Rockstar Husqvarna team which opened up an opportunity for Wilson. Bobby Hewitt, owner of the Rockstar team signed Dean during the week leading up to the Oakland Supercross and he stayed with the team for the rest of the 2017 and the entire 2018 season. Then, with Zach Osborne moving up into the 450 class for 2019, the Rockstar Husqvarna team tried their best to work out the details to resign Dean for another year, but it didn’t work out. With two 450 riders and three 250 riders already signed, Dean was the odd man out.
Dean Wilson’s factory supported Husqvarna FC450 and sprinter van pit set up from Anaheim 1 earlier this year.
Once again Dean went back into privateer mode for the opening rounds Supercross. But in 2019 it was a little different. Dean stayed on the Husqvarna brand and with support from the race team and Rockstar Energy he went racing. The 2019 Anaheim 1 Supercross was a complete mud race and Dean Wilson came out swinging and shocked the industry by leading the 450 main event for 15-minutes before eventually dropping back and finishing fourth. Dean continued as a privateer until the Minneapolis Supercross when he rejoined the Rockstar Husqvarna team as a fill-in rider for the injured Jason Anderson.
Dean Wilson finished third overall at the 2019 Houston Supercross Triple Crown.
Dean continued to improve as a factory rider again before he eventually reached the podium by finishing third at the Houston Supercross. Unfortunately Dean has still experienced some trials throughout the 2019 season. Dean had a bike malfunction at the Denver Supercross that resulted in a hurt shoulder. His Supercross season ended with only the Las Vegas finale left on the schedule and he would also miss the first half of the AMA Outdoor Nationals. Finally, once he was ready, Dean made his comeback to racing at the Redbud National where he finished ninth overall. Many thought this injury in the middle of the 2019 racing year would hurt Dean’s chances at a ride for 2020, but luckily for him the Rockstar Energy Husqvarna team has made room for him under the tent next year and we are happy to see the rider from Scotland secure a factory ride.
The 2019 Millville National qualifiers have been rescheduled due to heavy rain.
The 2019 AMA Nationals are in Millville, Minnesota today and round eight of the season is set to get underway at the Spring Creek Motocross Park. Adam Cianciarulo currently holds the points lead in the 250 class while the 250 West Coast Supercross Champion, Dylan Ferrandis is making moves and is slowly closing the gap. Qualifying has been delayed due to heavy rain and lightning at the Spring Creek Motocross Park. The first 250 Moto is still set to begin at 11:00 A.M. pacific standard time, check back in with us for results throughout the day.
The August 2019 issue of MXA is out now. MXA is the most comprehensive analysis of modern motocross machines possible. We are a true-to-life motorcycle magazine. Take a look below to see a small sample what’s in the August issue, you’ll be impressed.
You can’t tell how modern your current race bike is until you know what came before. Take this 1967 Greeves 250 Challenger as an example. Your eyes will immediately turn to the leading link forks, but did you see that the front half of the frame is aluminum? Or that it was bolted top and bottom to a chromoly steel frame cradle and backbone?
There is no doubt that you know what a forged piston is, but do you really? MXA takes you deep behind the aluminum curtain to explain everything you need to know about the difference between a forged and cast piston. And specifically about the controlled deformation of aluminum by compressive force.
Did you ever think about buying a Limited Edition Honda CRF450WE, better known as the “Roczen Edition”? The MXA wrecking crew spent two months racing both the Roczen Edition and the stock CRF450 in multiple races, at several different tracks and with four test riders (from slow to pro). We tell you whether the Roczen Edition is worth the extra $2400.
Although we’ve known Marty Smith since 1973, we decided to sit down for an engaging talk with one of the nicest guys in the sport. We cover his life as a teen idol, factory Honda racer, his time on a 200cc Cagiva and life after fame.
This is MXA’s Performance Guide to all of the 2019 two-strokes that we tested over the past year. That includes an analysis of the good and bad of the YZ125, KTM 125SX. TC125, YZ250, TC250, 250SX and TM300MX.
MXA tests products by racing with them and, in the August issue, we went head-to-head against two of the most popular Honda CRF450 mods—the FMF 4.1 RCT exhaust and the Rekluse TorqDrive clutch kit.
The 2019 Dubya USA World Two-Stroke Championship was open to anyone who wanted to the race. The Pro classes were divided into 125cc and Open (Open meant any thing from a 125 to a 500—as long as they were smokers). The race was a big success, the track had 3 minute lap times and Glen Helen was packed with riders of all ages and all skill levels.
When Husqvarna off-road team manager Timmy Weigand said that he was going to race a 112cc Husqvarna SuperMini in the 125 Proc class at the World Two-Stroke Championship, we were shocked. When he finished sixth overall we were on the phone to get our hands on Timmy’s two-stroke pop gun.
After the 1998 Motocross des Nations was over, MXA rounded up John Dowd’s, Doug Henry’s and Ricky Carmichael’s MXDN bikes for a chance to test Team USA’s bikes. This is a retro test of those three machines.
In honor of James Stewart finally making a public statement about his retirement, we dug into the archives to find a photo of James on his Chevy Trucks, Pro Circuit, Kawasaki KX125 two-stroke. We picked an artsy-fartsy shot for giggles.
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We all remember the good, the bad and the ugly of the bikes we grew up with. Rewinding the memories from 20 years ago feels like a trip to a different world. By today’s standards, the bikes of yesteryear were slow, poorly suspended and crude looking. It doesn’t take a genius to see that the bikes we loved to race 20 years ago wouldn’t hold a candle to the bikes we race today. But, what if you could update your favorite bike from the past with new-school technology?
That is what the MXA gang wanted to do when we ran across a barn-find 1995 Honda CR125. We thought about just restoring it from head to toe, but just staring at a show pony has never been our cup of tea. Then, it hit us. We would make this old dog young. But how? Trial and error. Over the course of the next month, we tried numerous modern parts in hopes that they could be transferred across the 22-year gap—but nothing slipped on like Cinderella’s shoe. That didn’t stop us; it just meant that we needed machining, fabricating and custom work to bring our dream to fruition. The ultimate goal for our old warhorse was to make it blazing fast, better handling, more reliable, super suspended and, of course, more stylish than when it rolled off the showroom floor two decades ago.
We used a few tricks to make our two decade old CR125 two-stroke look more modern.
Honda’s 125cc machines of the early ’90s were built for speed, but Honda was under intense pressure from its competition. The 1995 CR125 had lackluster bottom-end power but a hard-hitting midrange and decent rev on top. By 1995 it was an engine that had grown long in the tooth, as it had been virtually unchanged for half a decade. It may have been on its last legs as a race engine, but it was still a bike that could be made to work in the hands of talented racers—evidenced by the fact that Doug Henry and Steve Lamson dominated the 125cc AMA National Championship from 1993 to 1996 on their factory-prepped CR125s. The engine could be made to work, even 21 years later, but could we fix the rest of the ancient warrior?
UNDER FEDERAL LAW, A MANUFACTURER ONLY HAS TO KEEP PARTS IN STOCK FOR A DISCONTINUED MODEL FOR SIX YEARS. THIS IS UNFORTUNATE FOR EVERY BIKE RESTORER, BECAUSE MANY MUCH-NEEDED PARTS ARE NOT AVAILABLE ANYMORE—AND THE AFTERMARKET IS NOT RUSHING TO BUILD NEW PARTS FOR 24-YEAR-OLD MACHINES.
Our CR125 had been sitting idle. The engine needed a total update, and the suspension was grim. Step one was to tear it down and thoroughly inspect every bolt, bearing, nut, seal and widget. We stripped it to the frame, split the cases and searched for modern replacement parts. The frame was in good shape, so we spent some time roughing up the paint before sending it to San Diego Power Coating to get a fresh coat of white paint electrostatically applied.
We didn’t want to leave anything to chance on the engine, so we set out to replace all the important parts without busting the bank. Luckily, Wrench Rabbit makes a complete rebuild kit that includes all the parts you need to get an old steed up and running again. Wrench Rabbit’s CR125 kit included the crankshaft, main bearings, piston, rings, transmission bearings and all the gaskets necessary to make the engine new again. Best of all, it came in one box—no need to chase after individual part numbers.
Back in its heyday, the 1995 Honda CR125’s engine was eye-wateringly fast. It might be down on power by modern standards, but this engine was tons of fun to ride at full tilt.
Under federal law, a manufacturer only has to keep parts in stock for a discontinued model for six years. This is unfortunate for every bike restorer, because many much-needed parts are not available anymore—and the aftermarket is not rushing to build new parts for 24-year-old machines. In our case, the stock 1995 cylinder was thrashed. We searched for used cylinders, but it was hard to find anything of quality. From looking at the bore, we assumed that our cylinder wasn’t salvageable, but we sent it to Millennium Technology to be evaluated. As luck would have it, Millennium was able to re-plate our CR125 cylinder and work magic on the cylinder head. They saved our bacon.
The frame and engine were the easy parts, requiring only a modicum of mechanical acumen. After that the headaches began. We didn’t even want to mess with the stock Kayaba forks. They were atrocious in 1995 and really not ready to handle the high-flying antics of modern motocross tracks. At first we tried to retrofit any new-age fork that would mate with our CR125’s stock clamps. There was no match. The closest affordable combination we found was a set of Showa forks from a 2008 Honda CRF450. But, in order to get the 13-year-newer forks to fit, we needed custom triple clamps machined. No problem. We had a pleasant experience with Applied Racing when they built us a set of KTM triple clamps that accepted Kayaba SSS forks a year ago. So, we asked the guys at Applied to make 1995 Honda CR125 clamps that would accept 2008 Honda CRF450 forks and 2016 CRF450 plastic. While we waited for the triple clamps, we sent the forks (and shock) to Race Tech to get them valved and sprung.
New troubles kept popping up. Thanks to our new forks, we had to throw the dated CR125 front-brake system away because it wouldn’t fit on the new 2008 fork lugs. We bit the bullet and went to the used-parts market to get an entire front-brake system from a 2008 CRF450. As for the rear brake, the complete 2008 CRF450 brake system would not mount up to the old swingarm. Still, we used the 2008 integrated master cylinder, which forced us to cut the old-school remote brake-fluid reservoir bottle off the frame.
EVERY MXA TEST RIDER WANTED TO TRY IT, BUT NOBODY WANTED TO BE THE FIRST. THEY WERE A BIT LEERY ABOUT POUNDING OUT LAPS
ON A 21-YEAR-OLD BIKE.
At this point our 1995 Honda CR125 was golden. It ran, the frame was refurbished and the forks were first-rate. To button it up, we made a few other updates: (1) Wider titanium Raptor footpegs (for a KTM); (2) A 2007 CR125 aluminum ignition cover (instead of the old plastic one); (3) UFO number plates that we cut to create a modern look; (4) A Moto Tassinari V-Force reed cage; (5) Cycra front fender and Stadium front number plate; (6) New clutch plates and springs; (7) An FMF pipe and silencer; (8) DeCal Works graphics kit; (9) Dunlop MX32 tires.
We took UFO number plates and cut them to create a modern look.
When the time came to ride our renovated and refreshed CR125, every MXA test rider wanted to try it, but nobody wanted to be the first. They were a bit leery about pounding out laps on a 24-year-old bike. They were reassured when the bike started on the first kick and delivered that raspy vibrato that was the hallmark of one-two-fives of the 1990s. So, what was it like to ride it?
Okay, it wasn’t rocket-ship fast, but this comes from riders who have been lulled into senility by the metronome power of 450cc four-strokes. It took the four-stroke-bred test riders a little while to adapt to the pipey CR125 powerband. Once they began to click with the high-rpm shift points and the need to keep the engine percolating above the midrange, they began to rip off decent lap times. Other than the engine being underpowered by today’s standards, everyone loved this bike. It didn’t hurt that it was better than when it was showroom fresh.
Applied Racing made us custom triple clamps that mated with the new-school Showa forks and Cycra front fender.
The modern Race Tech-tuned 2008 Honda forks were supple on hard hits and handled well over the chop. They were a giant step in the right direction. At first the front end wanted to push in the corners, but once we recognized this fact, we slid the forks up in the clamps to bring the 1995 chassis back into its sweet spot. With the forks up in the clamps, the head angle became steeper and more weight was transferred to the front tire. This allowed the CR125 to take advantage of its light weight, crisper powerband and vastly improved suspension. Everything else was spot-on. The updated brakes, wider footpegs and clean ergos gave this old dog a modern feel.
This was not an easy project by any means. We spent considerable time and money making this bike all it could be, and it was all worth it when we could go to the local racetrack with a 24-year-old Honda CR125 and embarrass lots of guys on the newest, latest, greatest machines. We weren’t just remembering one of our favorite bikes from the past; we were racing it.