GET UP CLOSE WITH THE LAST HONDA TO WIN THE MX NATS PREMIER CLASS IN OZ

PIP BUILT, ANDO RIDDEN - THE TITLE WAS WON - THE BIKE SHINES ON

Opener

It may come as a somewhat surprising stat that Honda has not won a premier class motocross title in Australia since 2006. That’s a heck of a long time between Champaign sprays. Since that time, CDR Yamaha alone has won it eight times. Fun stat for all you Satan worshipers out there, Dean Ferris won his first title on a Yamaha in 2016 with a final points tally of 666.
Suzuki has won the title twice with Matt Moss since 2006, but Kawasaki (Reardon 2007) and KTM (Gibbs 2015), both share the unfortunate stat of just the one title each. Husqvarna also has just the one in 2019 with Waters, but the brand hasn’t been competing on an equal footing anywhere near the length of time the other five have, so we’ll hand them a pass.
To get more of an idea on what was inside that 2006 CRF450F, we gave Craig ‘Ando’ Anderson a call. He was 28 years-old when he and the ’06 took the title and he started the converstaion by saying, “That was apretty sick bike that ’06.”

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Sitting quietly, 14 years since it took a 28 year-old Ando to Honda’s last outdoor 450 title

“People probably don’t know this but I ran the same suspension settings for ’05, ’06, ’07, and ,08. In ’06 we may have gone a shim harder, but it was just for bottoming resistance. The stack was basically the same for that many years.”

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Red hot rims!

“We ran a Gripper seat cover and factory Michelin tyres. We ran standard wheels with a heat anodised coating on the hub so it had red hubs and silver rims.

It was a really good standard bike because the suspension matched the engine really well. It had good power and good handling and was a complete package that just seemed to work.”

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“Pip (Harrison) built the whole bike. He built the engine and the suspension himself.”

Poster 4a

“I got hurt in a supercross round just before the motocross. I separated my shoulder and got a bit of a concussion. So in the first round [of motocross] I went something like 4-12 and Hurley went 1-1. Then the next round I went 3-3, and the next round I went 2-2 and then I won the next four rounds.
I crashed practicing at Broadford just before round eight and broke my thumb and then Hurley crashed and hurt his knee at round eight in the first moto and was out for the series.”

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Team boss and bike builder, Pip Harrison, would step away from the racing team in 2007 and an era came to an end.

“I ran the same gearing every year of 13-50, I didn’t change that at all. I ran the standard link the whole time. I know that my motocross bike had standard piston but a cut cylinder (to give it more bottom-end), but my supercross bike had a high comp piston.”

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The team kept the same sponsors and partners for many years which made it easier for Ando to maintain a bike that didnt need many changes year-on-year
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Pro Circuit pipe and muffler
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“I ran different clamps for a little while but I always went back to standard.”

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Ando fires it into life evey now and then and it sounds like a beast. But otherwise the 2006 champ lies in rest, its hard work all done.
Damien Ashenhurst
About Damien Ashenhurst 1724 Articles
Managing Editor of DIRT ACTION magazine. Damo doesn't like cheese or ISIS. Can often be found riding in mud because it's closest to the natural environment of a squid.