Maybe you heard, maybe you didn’t because you don’t follow me on Instagram (dick), but BRO recently made the switch from 450s to 250s. “Oh Eazy, what 250, two stroke or four?” The answer, blissfully ignorant reader, is both. That’s right, I make the kind of fuck-you money that allows me to buy both a 2015 YZ250F and a 2015 YZ250. Now I’m here to talk about them, because unlike many writers in this business, I still actually ride.
I hate two-stroke nazis. Those “two-stroke or die” people always piss me off. If it has two wheels and a motor, odds are I’m going to enjoy it no matter what. Of course, that by no means should be read as “BRO hates two-strokes”. Every single time I ride the two-stroke, I say to myself, “I’m never riding the four-stroke again.” Then I ride the four-stroke, and every single time I think, “I love this fucking four-stroke.” The fact of the matter is that both bikes kick ass. The 250F is easy to ride, and once I had the thing dialed in, suspension-wise, I could ride the wheels off that motherfucker. What I love about the 250F is being able to go balls-to-the-wall and not have the consequences associated with a 450. They always say “Don’t override the bike,” but on a 250F, that’s kind of what you’re supposed to do. Kind of.
The two-stroke is a different story. You do have to respect that machine, and the power delivery is so different from a four-stroke that there is much, much more technique involved in riding it. I initially would ride the thing like my 250F, and I sucked. Riding a two-stroke is a sweet symphony between rider and machine – there has to be a serious amount of mutual admiration in the relationship. My 250F is my bitch, I fucking rule that thing, chains and whips and safe-words, the whole nine. It’s so easy to ride. My two-stroke I have to really appreciate – take it out to dinner and make sure it knows that I love it and all that shit. Sometimes, I go and talk to it into the wee hours of the night, but that’s less from a riding standpoint and more because I’m an introverted weirdo. The two-stroke is my lady; the four-stroke is my side piece.
Of course, if both bikes are heaps of fun and deliciousness, the end-all question has to be this: which one am I faster on? I honestly don’t know. I have never brought both bikes to the track on the same day and compared lap times, mainly because I have not really cared to. I feel like I’m going faster on the 250F, because I’m pinned way more on that thing. But the two-stroke is clearly the faster bike, as far as top speed is concerned. For now, I’m content just having fun on both.
I definitely argued against 250 two-strokes being allowed to race 250Fs when the AMA made that rule change in the amateur ranks years ago. I thought the two-stroke was clearly faster and it was stupid to put two bikes in the same class when one clearly outperformed the other. Now, I’ve changed my tune. I still think a two-stroke 250 is faster than a 250F, and if we were drag racing and I’m on my 250F and Vin Diesel pulls up on a 250 two-stroke, I will have no choice but to formally protest. But on a motocross track, top speed is only a small piece of the puzzle. Like I said, the 250F is MUCH easier to ride, and because of that, riding one in a long moto could actually pose an advantage over a two-stroke.
The time has come to allow 250 two-strokes to race the 250 class in professional racing. The argument that the factories would not be happy might be valid, but it’s also stupid. Let’s break it down: Yamaha and KTM (and Husqvarna, I guess) make two-strokes, so they’d be thrilled. Honda and Kawasaki have the two premier 250 teams of the last five years, and even a factory 250 two-stroke would not definitively outperform the PC and GEICO bikes. Suzuki doesn’t even have a 250F team, so they can go fuck themselves (although I’m hearing a Suzuki team might be back for 2016. Whatever, somebody needs to go fuck themselves). What I am saying is that no team has the right to be upset about two-strokes being allowed to race in the 250 class. These idiotic politics are genuinely eroding the possibilities of good racing.
The thing is, even allowing two-strokes to race the 250 class would not stop the four-stroke domination. I guarantee that most riders would still choose to ride four-strokes. Canada and Australia have both made the change, and since then, the top five in points every year in both series has been mostly four-stroke (Kaven Benoit even raced both to win the Canadian title, which is pretty awesome). There is no valid reason to continue to keep the 250 class at pro races four-stroke only. Ok, this rant is over. I’m going to go ride dirtbikes. Maybe four-stroke, maybe two-stroke; either way, having more fun than you. Eazy out.