Yamaha Yz450f

The GYTR YZ Power Tuner allows up to nine custom maps to be stored. Suggested base maps can be downloaded from the Yamaha website and then customized. Fuel and ignition can be altered to rider preference. Part # 33D-H59C0-V0-00

power off the bottom, completely transforming the bike for most of us. What a difference a map makes! It was still a handful through the midrange and up top but far more manageable exiling ruts and tight corners. Compared to the other two bikes, though, the YZ can be physically and mentally taxing.

Dudek preferred the standard base map. "I love the peppy motor. It always has power and immediate snap, which gives me bursts of speed," he said. But after struggling to match his fastest lap time on Pala's pro track, he came to the conclusion that the YZ was so aggressive it was digging trenches instead of moving the bike forward. Maybe our old-man map wasn't so wussy after all.


So much for being objective! We measured lap times on three different tracks, and there was a different winner on each one. The results at two of the tracks make perfect sense: The Honda dominated on the tight, twisty and hard-packed Pala Vet track, and the Yamaha kicked ass on Milestone's soft, loamy layout, which is highlighted by three triples. But the YZ's failure to go the quickest on Pala's power-robbing sandbox main track, which also has multiple steep hills, was surprising. The Yamaha was a full second slower than the KTM there, proving how critical smooth deliv-

It may have taken a long time for motocross bikes to catch EFI fever, but they enter the game far ahead of where their sportbike cousins did a decade ago. All three machines in this comparison have a means of either selecting different preprogrammed fuel/ignition maps or altering them.

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