wr450f vs kx500 desert racing

Hi all, I think i'm about ready to enter a race or 2 in the deserts of utah and I'm trying to decide which bike I want to ride. Would you pick my 08 wr450f with mods done or my buddy's kx500 piped and reeds but nothing too crazy if you were to enter a desert race?

Its really a matter of which bike is going to perform better because I can have unlimited access to both (mine obviously and he Literally has a spare 500)... I know weird but its convenient for me:thumbsup:

If you had to pick one which would it be and why?

Also does the wr need any big mods to run desert, other than suspension and a stabilizer?

Thanks everyone your replies are appreciated

How long is the race? If really long, I'd go with the WR. If short, like less than 2 hours, I'm getting some of the KX500. Shoot, if I could set up the KX500 suspension and other little tweaks, that would be my desert racer.

How much experience do you have with an open class 2 stroke? You really either love em or hate them. If it's a long race the vibration from the KX might be a bit tiresome compared to the smooth WR. Also depends what motor and suspension mods you've done to your bike. Wouldn't dream of a high speed desert race with the stock WR suspension....

I would pick the one with the best suspension since they both have a top speed that most likely will be more than you will need.

I think the KX500 is one of the winningest desert race bikes of all time til Kawi and Destry Abbott switched to the four stroke. All things being equal in terms of set up and time on bike I'd go with the KX. But as stated, the vibration and insane arm pull may get to ya after a while.

Thanks for the replies! :)

I probably should have added: I'm right about 6' 160lbs and neither one do I consider heavy or hard to handle. I've never raced but I'm most definately not new to riding, I'm just thinking its about time to get into the race scene. Also... the WR is my first 4 stroke actually so riding 2 strokes isn't any big change for me.

I'm not talking baja, just more like a max, MAX length of about 200 miles with most of my races being around 60mi

Will the kx be hugely outdated compared to my wr in terms of suspension and handling or will I appreciate the extra power when I go to open it up? (then again its not like the wr is slow)

Will I be happy i'm abusing the 2t top end when it comes time to rebuild it or will the 4t last so long that its not that big of a deal?

Are they both about equal at high desert speeds in terms of stability etc?

Having lived in utah for many years in the past and having raced both bikes in Utah I would say you will most likely be faster on the wr in just about any situation. The KX500 is an awesome bike and great for desert racing but will in no way compare to the wr during the longer races. The kx will just plain tire you out faster. The kx is also a very slow steering bike so it really shines on the long straights but will lag in the tighter areas. Plus the wr has the added benefit of the button so when you crash you won't waste energy kicking over the bike. The 500 can get hard to start after a few wrecks.

I would say for the more open races such as knolls or wendover, go for the kx500. for all others ride the WR.

I have gpr stabilizers on both bikes and have never had a problem with stability at speed and I use the full range of speeds on both bikes. Both bikes have had great reliability also so no complaints there.

I am also 5'10" and weigh around 155lb.

Whatever you decided just make sure you have fun!!

What a coincidence, I rode a friend's KX500 today. Totally not set up for me in terms of sag and all that. Wow, it was a handful on the super dry slick hot trails.

I mentioned this thread and asked what he'd go with for a long desert race. Mind you, he's a pro level rider and is in shape enough to hang onto a mad bull during mating season. He'd go 2 smoke.

Whichever you choose, set it up and get used to it before unleashing your off-road prowess!

I had a KX500 and currently have a WR450. Have not raced either one but like the WR much better. It just feels easier to ride and I am more relaxed on it.

WR450 all the way. At the Finke Desert race in Australia. for ever the best riders rode CR/KX500's. now since the 450 4's have arived every half decent rider races them. for the last 5 year a 450 4 has won it.

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