A fellow enthusiast on a discussion board argues that the restriction is a result of a timing retard in those circumstances... which I have no reason not to believe. (this would be a much simpler solution to execute)
That same enthusiast (dutchgixxer on vfrdiscussion.com) hypothesized that the restriction could be eliminated by "fooling" the ECU into thinking that the bike was in 3rd gear while in first and second. This would mean that it would revert to its full power map. He studied the wiring and provided a simple schematic on how to fool the ECU.
The VFR1200 has a very sophisticated gear position sensor (GPS) that uses an extremely accurate potentiometer on the shift drum. I suspect that this is "trickle-down" technology from the DCT version where the GPS plays a crucial role. Each gear position has its own wire going into the grey serial plug on the ECU. This makes it relatively simple to fool the computer.
I can't take credit for the concept of this modification, but I am pleased to provide a set of instructions.
The tank must be lifted to gain access to the ECU.
The grey connector is unplugged.
I cut a slit in the shrink sleeve to gain easier access to the wires. I separated the black and yellow wire. This is the 3rd gear wire which is grounded when the GPS detects that the transmission is in 3rd gear.
I carefully stripped away a bit of insulation and spliced in 2 short pieces of wire. I twisted them together, used a little blob of solder and taped it up.
The black and brown wire is the first gear wire and the light green and red wire is the 2nd gear wire. The third gear wire is spliced into the 1st and 2nd gear wires on the sensor side. I taped the ends of the wires on the ECU side to prevent shorting.
All taped up and back together. Now when the transmission is in 1st or 2nd gear, the ECU will get a 3rd gear signal. Full power will then be available in those gears. The only drawback is that the gear indicator display will give a false reading in 1st and second. It will read that the transmission is in third gear.
It could be a while before I ride again but I'll report back on how the mod changes the power delivery.