YZ400 in the Mojave desert

I land speed race my Hayabusas at the El Mirage dry lakebed in the Mojave desert. Since I got my YZ400F going, I took it with me this weekend. My wife's uncle and I managed to do about 2 hours of riding and I have some questions.

What can I do to the YZ400 to make it a better desert/trail bike? Is the YZ prone to heating up in slow-going? We were creeping through some slower rocky climbs and dried up rocky washes and the bike "smelled" hot and stalled and was difficult to start (starting has been reliable since I fixed the bike).

I found myself wanting more top speed and a lower 1st gear.

Also, the bike wallowed in the sand at high speed making for a nervous ride.

Is the wallowing in sand not as bad on the WR?

Sorry for all the questions - I am thinking that a WR would probably make a better mount for me but if I can put a few bolt-ons on the YZ to make it more tolerable on the trails, I would rather do that.

Is the YZ prone to heating up in slow-going? We were creeping through some slower rocky climbs and dried up rocky washes and the bike "smelled" hot and stalled and was difficult to start (starting has been reliable since I fixed the bike).
Any water cooled engine needs to either be kept moving, or have a fan added. Note that most quads have them. Unfortunately, there's no source of DC current to run one with. The YZ400 radiators are on the smallish side, and you can improve the situation by using a pair from a WR, or from a later YZ426. Be sure your cap is in good shape, your coolant fresh, and try not to let it idle for longer than 40 seconds.
I found myself wanting more top speed and a lower 1st gear.
Almost every desert rider on an MX bike has the same complaint. Can't have both without a WR transmission, which you could install.
Also, the bike wallowed in the sand at high speed making for a nervous ride.

Is the wallowing in sand not as bad on the WR?

Sand is tough, no matter what. You will find that fresh, trackless dunes don't cause this, and the bike is actually being steered to some extent by the tracks previously cut into the sand by the traffic that went before. A Scotts damper is apt to be the best solution, and I doubt the WR is that much different in this regard.

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