WHAT IS IT? The RJ Wing seat cover is the result of a collaboration between seven-time AMA National Champion Rick Johnson and Guts Racing. Rick came up with the design while working with Blake Baggett in 2016. When Blake was at factory Suzuki, he suffered a hand injury that made it difficult to hold on. To work around the injury, Rick Johnson suggested that Blake use his legs more to control the bike. Guts added foam inserts to each side of their seat cover that bulged out for better knee contact.
WHAT’S IT COST? $149.90 (seat cover), $349.90 (complete seat).
CONTACT? www.gutsracing.com or (530) 642-9118.
WHAT STANDS OUT? Here’s a list of things that stand out with the Guts Racing RJ Wing seat cover.
(1) Concept. Originally, Rick Johnson proposed the idea of creating a wider seat foam to give Blake Baggett more leverage for gripping the bike. Guts Racing simplified this idea, making it more cost-effective for the end user. The Wing seat uses the standard Guts ribbed gripper seat cover with 1-inch inserts on each side. The inserts use Guts’ ultra-lightweight Phantom foam, and they’re sewn into the seat cover, requiring no extra work on install.
(2) History. Although this seat cover first came on the market in 2016, it’s still relatively new in the motocross world. The RJ Wing seat has gotten the most press on Dean Wilson’s Rockstar Husqvarna bike. Dean first tried the seat in 2017 and has been running it ever since. Michael Mosiman also used this seat during his time with the Husqvarna team before moving to GasGas.
(3) Performance. Stock seat covers are low on traction, meaning that when you hit the throttle, you slide back on the seat. When this happens, your arms must pull your body back into the correct position. This results in arm pump and fatigue. The RJ Wing seat is a gripper seat on steroids. Once you mentally adjust to having 1-inch spacers between you and the bike, you find that it is significantly easier to grip while standing up. This cover worked best for our taller and heavier riders because they’re the ones who have a harder time gripping onto the bike. Extra weight and height mean more mass that has to be pulled forward. Many riders add grip tape to their number plates and frames, but grip tape can’t match the Guts Wing seat cover.
(4) Durability. When new, the foam wings are strong. As expected, the foam breaks down over time with your knee gripping onto the bike and the foam inserts becoming softer yet still very effective.
(5) Installation. Guts Racing’s seat covers are relatively easy to install for two reasons. First, the Guts covers have an elastic band along the edges that directly mounts to the seat base. Unlike other brands, you don’t have excess material to trim off after installing. Simply staple the elastic band to the plastic seat base. Second, Guts Racing cuts its vinyl gripper seat material vertically, rather than horizontally, to improve installation. Other brands cut their material horizontally because it’s a smart way to get more raw material out of each roll of fabric. Guts goes the expensive route because vinyl material that is cut lengthwise is easier to stretch over a long motorcycle seat during install.
(6) Options. Currently, the RJ Wing seat cover is only available in black, but Guts plans to add some color options in 2022. Guts offers five different seat-foam height options.
WHAT’S THE SQUAWK? Two downsides. (1) It takes a session or two to learn how to grip the bike with the wings. At first, we had duck feet on the pegs. (2) The seat looks odd with 1-inch humps on each side.
MXA’s Josh Mosiman used the Guts Racing RJ Wing seat at the 2021 Hangtown National while racing a stock KTM 450SXF. Read the full story about it here.
MXA RATING: The pros of the RJ Wing seat are that it lessens arm pump, delivers better grip and saves energy. Grip tape and gripper seat covers work well, but the Wing seat increases grip tenfold. If you ever find yourself wishing it were easier to hang onto your motorcycle, this seat cover will help.