I thought I would post up my experience with the WR450F. I am an A (expert) enduro rider, but semi-retired, I race about 4 events a year and the rest of the time if spent fast trail riding. I've have a lot of bikes in the past, KTMs, YZs, KXs. My latest bike prior to the Yamaha was a KTM four stroke and while it never broke down on me the high maintenance was wearing me out. I was looking for a new bike in 2010 and ended up buying a new 2009 WR450F. The thinking was: - seemed like most reliable, lowest maintenance, high performance 4 stroke - I had a 2002 YZ250F that I had liked and a 2004 YZ250 that I had liked - Charlie Mullins was hauling on one (but I wasn't sure how much of a WR it was) - I should be able to turn the bike into a KTM killer and be reliable and have lower maintenance I bought the AIS removal kit to get all the jets, but left the AIS on as I am in CA and some riding areas actually look for that. So I did the uncorking, removed the pea shooter from the muffler, snipped the grey wire, rejetted the carb, removed the airbox baffle, but left the AIS on. I also replaced the stock seat with a Guts racing cover and tall medium foam to get a softer seat and improve the seat-to-footpeg distance (was too cramped for me, but I'm only 5'10"). On the first ride I was pretty happy with the power, clutch, and brakes. The transmission seemed very notchy but was ok. The handling seemed fine, nothing great, nothing bad. But the suspension was odd to me. Stock, it was deflecting off rocks and roots kind of excessively. Ok, stopped and lightened up the fork compression. Still not so great, made a few more clicks. Oh, I weight 160lbs so spring rates were good stock. Then I went over a few small jumps on a simple track area and the forks bottomed fairly easily and moved thru their travel way too easily. Very odd ... on rocks/roots the forks felt non-compliant, but easily blew thru the stroke on small (3 foot) jumps. I had planned on a revalve so I wasn't that concerned ... just not sure who Yamaha thought would ride the bike. Seems like it would work fine if you didn't have any rocks or roots around, but where is that? So I sent the forks and shock to a well loved by thumper talk suspension shop and I'll admit, I was expecting a dramatic improvement. When I got the bike back together and went for another ride the problem was a bit better but still way worse than any stock KTM I'd ever had. Same issue. If I softened things up for rocks/roots then any small jump would blow thru the travel. If I set it up for normal jumps that I would do in an enduro then it would deflect badly on rocks/roots. So basically the range of what it could handle was very limited which is really bad for enduros as the range of conditions are pretty extreme. Another odd thing popped up ... the bike seemed to be a slow turning (I'm thinking not that big a deal, I can play with the rear shock preload) but it was also very twitchy and had headshake at not that fast of speeds over not that rough ground. So back to the suspension shop for round 2. Went over my experience and hoped for a big improvement again. I don't think the suspension shop did that much on round 2, maybe raised the fork oil height, not sure. Go for a ride, same issue, too much deflection if set up for any kind of fast riding/little jumps, too soft if set up for some trail junk. Ok, back to suspension shop for round 3. This time the shop make things more stiff. So it was ok at jumps but worlds worse on rocks/roots and deflecting all over the place. And now it was so stiff that I couldn't dial the clickers down to a point to reduce the deflection. So at this point I made up a list ... 3 columns ... one was everything I loved about the bike, everything that I liked (was ok), and everything I disliked about the bike. In the "Loved" column I had nothing. In all the rides and testing nothing really stood out as great. In the like column there were several things. Noise level was nice, brakes good, clutch good, I liked the power and gear ratios, ergos ok, nice fit and finish, ahhh, pretty blue color. In the dislike column was the horrible suspension and bad handling. Also didn't like the notchy shifting (although it worked ok). Also, the gas tank size was too small so I was going to have to buy a larger aftermarket tank. So at that point I figured I would need to buy a gas tank, switch to a difference suspension tuner and hope they could work some magic, and hope the suspension improvements fixed the handling issues (slow turning yet lots of headshake). So another ~$600 into the project. And there was nothing in the "Love it" column. Thought about it a while and decided to see if I could sell it at a reasonable loss. I figured if no one would buy it at a decent price then maybe I continue along. And someone gave me a reasonable price, bike gone. I know I'm risking hate mail coming on a WR450 forum and saying I had a bad experience with one, but I just thought I'd report up what my experience was. And for the question "What did you buy next?" ... I got a 2011 KTM 300 XC ... oh so nice ... stock.