When VP Racing Fuels introduced VP Trials 2ST, I was pleasantly surprised that the 46-year-old company felt there was enough of a need for a specialty fuel for two-stroke trials bikes. I’m sure KTM’s purchase of GasGas didn’t hurt.
VP’s description of the fuel indicates the company understood the needs of the trials community: “The engines must smoothly rev from idle to thousands of rpm in an instant and then back to idle without loading up or hesitation.” That is exactly right.
With a 95.3 octane rating, VP Trials 2ST is potent enough for even the highest compression trials bikes. It’s an unleaded fuel with an oxygen content of 1.65 percent by weight.
Unlike VP’s T2 fuel, which is formulated for two-stroke dirt bikes and premixed with two-stroke oil at a 40:1 ratio, Trials 2ST is pure fuel. You manually mix in your favorite oil at your preferred ratio; 80:1 is the standard almost all trials riders use in carbureted two-strokes. We added our usual Motul 800 Factory Line Off Road 2T at that ratio.
Over the years, we have tested various race fuels in our observed trials motorcycles. For our Beta trials bikes, we have found they don’t require a higher-octane fuel, and the motors didn’t seem to run that much better to make the high cost of a specialty fuel worth it. Also, we ride several times a week, so the ethanol in the premium pump gas doesn’t cause an issue as it isn’t sitting around. So, for several years we’ve just been using 91 octane pump gas.
I will say that VP T2 fuel, with its higher oxygen content, works very well in the Beta and TM 300cc two-stroke enduro bikes, and not having to mix in the oil is a plus.
As most trials riders know, even the best-tuned and jetted trials bike motors will load up after extended low rpm riding—meaning it has to be revved out a little to reach a maximum level of clean running. It’s the nature of using a carburetor rather than fuel injection. We’ve all seen top factory riders rev out their bikes to clean the motor out before hitting large obstacles.
We started with an empty tank and carb, so it was 100 percent VP Trials 2ST fuel (and Motul oil) in our Beta Evo 300’s motor. After warm-up, I purposely let it idle for an extended time to see if it would load up as it normally would—it didn’t.
I started my ride and did my usual turns and small rocks to get myself up to operating temperature—that was another three minutes or so of low rpm use. After that, I wicked the throttle wide open, and the engine revved out clean instantly—no blubbering or hesitation at all.
For the next week, I used VP Racing Trials 2ST fuel for all my practice sessions. The motor runs cleaner off the bottom and through the mid-range, always being clean when I needed to rev it out.
The next test took me up to an elevation of 6500 feet for a trials event in the Sierra Nevadas—my training area is at 1500 feet above sea level. Usually, my Beta motors run pretty well with just an air screw adjustment on the Keihin carburetor to compensate for the 5000-foot elevation change. After a few minutes of riding at high altitude, I realized I didn’t need to change a thing. The two-stroke motor was running great with zero adjustments.
Overall, I’m extremely impressed with VP Trials 2ST fuel. In the past, I’ve never found enough of a gain over pump fuel to justify the cost of race fuel. Trials 2ST makes a difference in a trials bike, and that’s enough to make me switch over. This isn’t a fuel that is exclusively for pro- or expert-level riders—I’m not one. Anyone with a two-stroke trials bike will benefit.
I haven’t tried VP Trails 2ST in this application, but I think it would be good for the extreme enduro guys whose engines also run at low rpm for extended periods. With a 95-octane rating, it’s undoubtedly going to be safer than pump gas. This will have to be the subject of a future test.
Retailing at $77 for five gallons of VP Racing Fuels VP Trials 2ST, it’s $9 less expensive than VP T2. Fortunately, we don’t burn a lot of fuel riding trials, so it won’t break the bank. Add in the fact that it has a generous shelf life, that five-gallon steel pail of Trials 2ST will last you a long while if you don’t ride regularly.
VP Racing Fuels VP Trials ST Specs
- MON: 91.2
- RON: 99.3
- R+M/2= 95.3 octane
- Specific gravity: 0.7245
- Oxygen content: 1.65 percent by weight
- Fuel type: Unleaded
- Color: Red
VP Racing Fuels VP Trials 2ST Price: $77/five-gallon pail MSRP