"If you ain’t first, you’re last.”
KTM is fond of special edition dirt bikes. If it’s not the annual Six Days or Erzbergrodeo editions then it’s collaborations with Troy Lee Designs or celebratory models like the 350 EXC-F WESS. Well, the Austrian off-road specialists are at it again. This time KTM honors AMA Grand National Cross Country (GNCC) Champion Kailub Russell with a limited-edition 2021 350 XC-F featuring a wealth of performance parts and his long-held No. 1 plate.
As an eight-time GNCC champion with 67 wins to his name, Kailub Russel is no slouch in the enduro ranks. If his GNCC accolades aren’t enough to convince you, his three Full Gas Sprint Enduro Championships (2015, ‘19, ‘20), 2015 AMA National Enduro Champion, and two team ISDE World Trophy Championships (2016 and ‘19) should do the trick. At only 30 years of age, Russell has conquered some of the toughest races and series in motorcycling and he’s done it all with FMF KTM Factory Racing Team.
Thanks to that partnership, the KTM 350 XC-F KAILUB RUSSELL sports a snazzy blue FMF muffler along with trick racing components. Along with the obligatory orange powder-coated chassis and orange-anodized triple trees, the limited-run machine receives functional upgrades like a larger 2.6-gallon translucent fuel tank, Dunlop Geomax AT81 tires, and Selle Dalla Valle seat. Brembo calipers pull stopping duties, clamping down on a semi-floating front disc and a solid rear rotor.
Of course, you can’t ride like Russell unless you can go like Russell, and the race-tuned engine should help in that department. Weighing in at only 60 pounds, the hopped-up mill features performance mods like titanium valves and diamond-like coated cam followers. Despite all that power, the XC-F handles like a 250 thanks to the high-spec WP suspension and factory triple clamps. The system allows riders to adjust offset so the chassis and front end work in concert while rubber-damped handlebars help soak up the biggest hits.
To finish off the 350 XC-F KAILUB RUSSELL, KTM wrapped the bike in FMF KTM Factory Racing Team graphics and slapped on Russell’s racing number. No, we may not be decorated enduro riders or eight-time champions of anything, but with KTM’s latest special-edition dirt bike, there’s no reason you can’t dream big.