Moto: Bridging the gap between mini and full size

I am 39 years old, 5 foot 7 at 135 pounds and live in California (green/red sticker). I got a used little 1998 kx80 a year ago to see if I like dirt biking.

Of course I do, so now I need a bigger bike but a 125/250 seem too big for me. I can just barely tippy toe when sitting on one. I know people way smaller than me ride full size bikes and I should be on a full size bike, but I guess I am just intimidated by the size and power of the bike.

Do you think I should get a kx 100 or get the full size bike?

Brian Lopes wrings out a BBR-maxxed CRF150 at an indoor track in Seattle. This bike retailed for something like $15K. He bought one on the spot.

Hey Brian,

Welcome to the world of moto. What’s not to like about ripping around on what amounts to a perpetual downhill?

Most mountain bikers take quickly to moto riding, but the size and weight can be intimidating. That’s why so many MTB/MXers ride smaller motorcycles. But true minis like 80s are awfully small.

Check out the Honda CRF150R. It’s a small-sized bike with nice, usable 4-stroke power (I don’t think you need or want a two stroke like a Kawasaki KX). The CRF150R Expert model is made for slightly taller riders — I think you’d really dig that.

Many MTBers start (and stay) on bikes like this. Given your height, I think you can tune and tweak your 150R as your skills improve. It’s a solid little bike, and BBR Motorsports will make it as fast as you can handle (and afford).

Don’t be in a hurry to ride a bigger bike. A confident rider on a 150 is faster and has more fun than a nervous rider on a 250.

This is pretty interesting:

Lopes, a very solid moto rider, rips a flat turn on the 150.

Same turn, same rider, on a 250. He’s still killing it, but he looks more reserved.


— Lee

PS: I have a fair amount of time on both a 250 motocross bike and a 450 trail bike. The 250 is much narrower and about 60 pounds lighter, and, to be honest, it’s more fun to ride.

Look at the big smile inside Steve Peat’s helmet. Peaty (about 6’5″) is a big fan of small motorcycles.

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