This project has come together with the help of some great companies and hard working individuals in our industry. Yamaha gave
us this brand new WR450 offroad motorcycle for us to transform into an
asphalt ripping, supermoto weapon for MotoGP racer Ben Spies. Yamaha
also gave us full access to their race department and commissioned,
esteemed engine tech, Bob Oliver to pumping up the restricted WR power
plant. The GYTR cylinder head, cams, K&N
air filter and re-worked carburetion were done to really wake up the
power delivery on this machine. Trevor Kemp, marketing manager for
Yamaha’s GYTR accessory program, got us hooked up with every bolt-on
product we could throw at this bike. From the exhaust system to hand
guards to all the little billet oil plugs and Lightspeed carbon fiber
bits, they had everything in stock and we had it in our hands the next
The powerplant is the heart of any machine but, the first thing you’ll probably notice on this bike are the insane graphics! Roland came up with this GP-inspired blue burst scheme and we hit up our boys over at ZLT to print them out for us. These guys do custom MX graphics for racers and riders all day and this graphics kit came out beautifully! ZLT had the WR450 bodywork templates and all of the sponsor logos already in their database for us to access. The colors are vibrate and they lined right up to the plastics kit and shorty supermoto front fender that we got from Acerbis.
GYTR Cylinder Head
Race Tech got us taken care of on the suspension side of things by installing Gold Valves and re-springing the front and rear. Race Tech has been around the block and we’re confident Ben is going to be stoked with the way this thing handles. SDG doesn’t make a stock replacement WR seat, but they had no problem cutting down the foam on the stocker to make a custom step seat and covering it with their sticky kevlar traction. Yamaha’s race department got us one of their “spare” Brembo front brake kits and QTM helped us to get it onto the stock WR front fork with one of their caliper brackets. We saw some really nice looking Talon pegs while we were down at QTM. Turns out that they are also the distributor for Talon so, we somehow weaseled a set out of them for the project too! We installed set of Easton EXP handlebars, risers and grips to make for a nice looking and comfortable cockpit.
Tallon Foot Pegs
BRP Chain Guide
Performance Machine made us up a custom set of their race-weight Assault wheels in a new finish called Black Ops. The contrasting rough and smooth textures look insane and really set off the bike. We wrapped the wheels with true Dunlop road racing tires. The medium compound (6680) D211GP up front and D209GP out back are sure going to keep ol’ “Elbows” hooked up! Drive Systems USA supplied us with the AFAM sprocket and we hooked them together with a D.I.D. 520ERV3 X-ring chain. Keeping the chain on the sprocket is a BRP rear chain glide block, made from a specially formulated low-friction polymer. We also got a blue anodized billet gas cap from BRP while we were at it. They make some beautifully machined products for the offroad and MX industry and we are proud to run a couple of them on Spies’ bike.
Brembo Brakes and QTM Caliper Adapter
BRP Gas Cap
Just finished up the graphics and sent them to ZLT to get printed. They always do a good job so we know it’s going to look killer. Stay tuned to see it all come together.
Parts are back from Olympic powdercoating. We gave the frame, swing arm, sub frame and miscellaneous components a semi-gloss black treatment. Suspension is going out today to get valved and sprung. Making progress.
Ben Spies is a bad ass. No doubt about it. First year in World Superbike and he wins the title, first year in Moto GP and he’s on the podium and looking to be a big time threat next year. We’ve talked to Ben a number of times about building him a bike, we went back and forth from cruiser to café racer, but in the end he wanted something completely versatile and fun. If all goes as planned we’ll be handing this “street legal” Yamaha WR 450 SuperMoto beast over to the man himself at the Long Beach IMS show. It’s getting all the goodies. Yamaha factory engine work, Ohlins suspension, one off graphics, Forged PM racing wheels, GYTR components, some RSD goodies and what ever else we can find to spice it up.