Moto Media

from ... Chris Power

Hi everyone, so the silly season starts again eh!
Maramarua was the setting for Round 1 of the Belray and the weather couldn’t make up it’s mind. The off and on showers proved more annoying than anything else and as the shotgun went off it was sunny days.
Having just taken possession of the new 2012 Honda CRF450, this was going to be the first ride for the new girl and I was interested in how it would go compared to the old bike. And just like the old bike it fired first kick, although i had to really check as it was so quiet compared to all the other bikes around me. The start straight was very short and it ducked straight into a creek. I shot into the creek in about 10th place and then emerged from the creek in third. The track was a good mixture of fast open farmland mixed with some very tight and tricky native bush. the laps were 18 minutes around and I soon found myself in the lead dicing with Yamaha rider Adrian Smith. It wasn’t long before KTM racer Jason Davis made it a three way battle for the lead midway through lap two. Having not ridden since August, Smith led both myself and Davis through and we both put the hammer down. Dave slid past me coming into a tight off camber corner and we then played follow the leader for the next 40 minutes and gapped the rest of the field – it was now a two man race.
We both pitted at the 1hr 10min mark which is where the dynamic of the race changed. Davis exited the pits a good 30 seconds before me as my ‘quick filler’ was more of a ‘medium paced’ filler. Loosing sight of Davis was not good and I tried to pick back up to his wheel. I was pushing a little hard and had a small slid out on an off camber. When I remounted I could hear something was wrong with the bike. It sounded like loose spokes which can happen on a new bike. I pulled over and checked the wheels and found nothing wrong. But the noise was still there when I got going again. I later realised when looking down on a slow corner that my header pipe guard had broken and was knocking against the header making the noise I was looking for.

I got back on the gas again but it was too late and Davis had rode a great race taking the win. I was happy with second place as it was the first ride on the new bike. I had only put on my own handlebars and run the stock tires even.
The bike was good. It never stalled out on me and the standard suspension was even not too bad for the bush. The new 2012 CRF450 will be a good choice this season
I’d like to thank all my sponsors and especially Honda for extending their support for another year. It’s always good when your team is right behind you 100%.
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Thanks again,