July 26, 2005 Austrian motorcycle manufacturer KTM had one of the most remarkable debuts of any racing machine in history when it gave its new KTM Grand Prix 250 its first outing in the hands of Australian rider Anthony West at the British MotoGP round. The 250 class is highly competitive with any one of a dozen riders capable of winning on any day, and a machinery war between Honda and Aprilia that keeps improving the two-stroke breed, minute-by-minute, making it nigh-on-impossible for a new bike to break into the top echelon of 250 racing. So despite KTM’s illustrious off-road racing pedigree, and a fine showing from its recently created 125 roadracer, it was not expected to be competitive for some time yet, given that it had only been ridden ONCE prior to arriving at the Grand Prix. Then West had the new 110 bhp motor seize up in practice at over 200km/h. Then, on race day it rained, LOTS!! But West had won an Australian dirt track title when he was 15 years old, and is comfortable with a bike sliding at very high speeds. What happened?
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