Husqvarna FC250 Wiseco Racer Elite Tested in Arenacross

April 18, 2018 / by Scott Meshey

Scott Meshey is a motocross racer that has been working his way up through the ranks. His most recent journey involved racing Arenacross to earn his Road to Supercross points. Scott has been a key tester of Wiseco Racer Elite 4-stroke pistons. Check out his detailed write up on on his experience using Racer Elite in his Husqvarna FC250.

Previously, I have used the Wiseco Racer Elite piston in my Kawasaki KX250F’s that exceeded my expectations and tremendous results. However, I have had the opportunity to make the brand switch from the 2017 Kawasaki KX250F to a 2018 Husqvarna FC250. I’ve had a good amount of time on the bike, riding it as showroom floor stock, 9 hours, and then installed the Racer Elite piston. Mainly, I tested the Racer Elite in the indoor environment, of professional Arenacross races, Amateur Supercross events and a pro Supercross track. In this process, I have obtained my Road to Supercross points in four events for my professional Supercross license with only a Racer Elite piston, race fuel, and an aftermarket muffler installed on the bike.

Scott Meshey racing at the Daytona Amateur RC Supercross.
Photo courtesy of David Pilgrim - Pilgrim Pictures

This was a great opportunity to get some thought provoking data on the Racer Elite piston’s impact on performance. These disciplines require a great range of power throughout the power curve, and test the bikes ability and response due to the different obstacles and conditions. I showcased the Racer Elite in multiple events including Greensboro Arenacross, which featured bit of sand and dirt mixture that held a good amount of moisture, but was slick in berms and nasty ruts. This made the catapult and rhythm sections a challenge demanding immediate torque. Florence Arenacross was mainly red clay providing loads of traction. However, the track broke down and got deep ruts, which can rob a bike of its low-end power. At the South of the Border training facility, I rode both the Arenacross and Supercross tracks, both hard clay that was no nonsense and not very forgiving, requiring bottom to mid end horsepower, not high rpm’s which would result in spinning.

Arenacross is demanding on bikes, calling for immediate, strong power when it's needed. Here, Meshey races the Greensboro round of AX.

In my previous experience with the Racer Elite piston, it created a strong increase in power throughout the power curve in the Kawi, and made the bike leap out of the corners. The Husqvarna FC250 is a bit different compared to my last experience, as it has an impressive 5 more HP stock out of the crate than a KX250F, and the meat of that power can be found in the high RPMs. Of course, once you got to that top end power, it never stops digging and gaining speed, but getting there is the bump that is needed for the Husky in my humble opinion. For tight and technical racing, it’s super important to have reliable bottom to mid-end power for multiple scenarios, but is especially important for whoops!

The Racer Elite piston provided the Husky a lot of necessary power for any scenario that was thrown my way from my indoor endeavors. It was very easy to notice the increase in power, however, what was so amazing was exactly how the increase in power changed the overall performance and profile of the bike. It added a good deal of power on the lower end of the RPMs, which made it easier to climb quicker towards the high RPMs where the FC250 excels. In addition to a needed bottom end bump, it promoted the never ending full throttle climb on top that allowed me to really ring the bike out on an Arenacross straight without worrying about unnecessary shifting. This was also helpful coming out of a tight corner into a finish line catapult or a big triple into a rhythm section, because I was able to use the same gear coming out of the corner all the way up the jump without concern of coming up short. If you’ve ever frame-cased an Arenacross catapult, you understand why that is such a relevant concern!

Jumping a finish line catapult or tripling in a rhythm section in AX can be the difference between victory and defeat. Having the power to get you over is the lifeline Meshey relies on.

As I mentioned, the Racer Elite provided a much needed bottom end bump in horsepower. Before I added the Racer Elite piston, I was skimming the Arenacross whoops at the South of the Border in 3rd gear, with a little bit of struggle. I was then instructed to use 4th gear instead which would utilize a greater amount of power available in the gear and decrease engine breaking and front end drop. This worked nicely, but it was difficult to get consistent runs because I felt the need to enter in with more speed to compensate for the lower RPMs. For me, I do better in Arenacross whoops when I am able to focus on each whoop and adjust accordingly for each one.

When I added the Racer Elite piston, I was able to keep a controllable approach, and gain speed further into the whoops because I was able to judge each one and keep a consistent amount of throttle. I even started to increase the throttle towards the end, and skip one whoop out. This not only helped with the whoops themselves, but made the following corner easier because I had better control going in, had less jerky or rushed movements within the corner, and was able to keep a good speed coming into the following rhythm section. In the type of racing where your lap times range from about 21 to 26 seconds, every tenth and even hundredth of a second is crucial.

Scott_meshey_FC250_1

In the two pro Arenacross rounds that I raced in, there were two very particular instances that I can specifically say that the benefits of the Racer Elite piston made my success that much more attainable. They happened in separate rounds, but actually made the difference of making the main event in one of my classes. In Greensboro, I started around 5th in my AX Lites LCQ, and had to quickly make my way to second place to get my spot in the main event. For this race, the catapult had an exceptionally short run, and the corner before got pretty deep and beat up. For the final two passes, the riders in front of me were having a hard time clearing the catapult, whereas I was able to get plenty of power to the ground and with the help of the Racer Elite piston. I was able to jump the catapult free and clear and get the drive necessary to propel the Husky up and over to set me up correctly for the next corner. It was the ability of my bike to get the power out of the corner and up over the catapult that got me within striking distance of those in front me going into the following turn.

The second instance was in my AX heat race in Florence, where I was sitting two spots out of a transfer. I knew the two riders ahead of me were going to get together in a corner before a rhythm section. I had made sure I gave them some room, but I would have to cut down hard in the corner and triple into the section, which was no easy task, even with a clean outside line. They had hit each other, and I was able to cut down hard on the corner, into a deep rut. Even with almost coming to a standstill, I sunk deep into the rut and gave it a handful of throttle that started at mid RPM’s, and could triple into the rhythm section and pass both guys for the transfer spot. Compared to how the bike performed without the piston, I doubt that I would’ve cleared the jump in a pinch like that!

Overall, I was very impressed with Racer Elite piston in the FC250. Of course, with some high-quality race fuel, the benefits of the Racer Elite are further enhanced. I truly believe there was a substantial difference made in my bike because of the piston, and it helped give me a boost of confidence in my machine to know that I was able to accomplish what I was demanding from the bikes performance. Aboard my FC250, with only a Wiseco Racer Elite piston, slip on muffler, and race fuel as my engine modifications, I was able to make both the AX and AX Lites main events at the Florence and Greensboro Arenacross races, and place top 5 in the Tampa Amateur Supercross round, as well as win the Atlanta Amateur Supercross in the 250 A class. These finishes produced the results and earned the points required in the Road to Supercross, to obtain my professional Supercross license. The performance of the Racer Elite piston was instrumental in the outcome of the end results!

The Wiseco Racer Elite piston separates itself with its asymmetrical skirt design, billet construction, lapped rings, and ultra-flat ring grooves. Learn more about the science behind the Racer Elite piston here.

Scott Meshey action photos courtesy of Martha Prentis - MEPMX, unless otherwise noted.

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