Eight was great, but Honda’s near-decade-long run at the top with the CRF450R has finally come to an end. Creative thinking resulted in the “backward”-top-end Yamaha YZ450F, the machine that toppled the Red Regime. But it wasn’t just the mass-centralizing engine architecture (with the intake at the front and exhaust at the rear) that helped improve handling. Excellent KYB suspension glides over braking bumps and eats sharp impacts, while the YZ’s fuel-injected engine—regardless of its layout—provides excellent low-end to midrange output, resulting in more usable power for a wider variety of riders. Add it all up and you get an incredible bike that gives us a fresh face at the top of the MX podium.