Catching Up with…#313 Nicky Osnach
By Billy Rainford
If you’ve been wondering who the Canadian showing up on results sheets from Dayton, Ohio, to Atlanta, Georgia, to Riverside, California, is, well, you’re in luck. Nicky Osnach is the Canadian rider from Manitoba who’s been logging the travel miles to hit some big races this past winter.
He just raced the MTA 2-Stroke Championships at Glen Helen last weekend, so we wanted to catch up with him to learn a little more about what the 16-year-old has planned for the rest of the season. We grabbed him for a conversation as he was camping in Lake Elsinore, California. Here’s what he had to say.
Direct Motocross: Hello, Nicky. First off, where are you from and how old are you?
Nicky Osnach: I’m from Teulon, Manitoba. It’s a little north of Winnipeg and I’m 16.
How did you get started in Motocross?
I just rode around at home with my brother and my friends and, one day, my dad said we should just try a race. So then we went to an MMA race at Mennedosa and have been hooked ever since. I’m pretty sure I was 12 then.
Did your dad ride bikes, as well?
No, only trikes. He wasn’t allowed to ride bikes.
How did you choose your first race number?
I picked my number because of Eminem, the rapper. He had a rap battle in his movie and he was from Detroit, so the area code is 313 and I liked the song, so the first thing in my head was 313.
Who was your motocross hero growing up?
Um, probably Travis Pastrana.
Were you a fan of FMX or did you just like his attitude, or what?
Basically, that’s the only guy I really knew about motocross. I knew Ricky Carmichael, but…
After your first race, how did you progress?
We did the first full season, and then did every race the following season again. [A couple years ago] we trained at Millsaps for a week to try something else and then the year after that we came to California to ride with Factory MX and I ended up getting both championships that year, so we’re back here again.
What championships were those that you won?
I got the 85 (12-16) championship in Manitoba and I got the Open 85 championship.
You’ve been racing some Arenacross. Where all have you been racing this past winter?
We did Dayton, Ohio, and Madison, Wisconsin, and we did the Atlanta Supercross for the points.
You’ve been racing the C classes. What’s been your best finish, so far?
I got 4th in a heat race. I should have been either 4th or 5th in Dayton, but the lap counter messed up because there were no transponders and I ended up getting 8th. They counted it wrong.
How long have you been down in California?
2 weeks. We’re leaving Monday.
Have you seen any other Canadians while you’ve been down there?
Ya, there’s someone from Calgary in the same campground as us and 2 of my friends and my brother are with us.
Are they all racing, too?
They raced last weekend, but they’re training with me.
Let’s talk about the 2-stroke championship at Glen Helen. Have you raced it before or was this your first time there?
That was my first time but I’ve raced Glen Helen before.
What do you think of that track?
It’s fun and then it gets beat up. It’s tough.
What did you think of the hills? Were you accelerating down them or were you nervous?
I was accelerating down them because on the way down to California we stopped at a track called Mesquite MX and they had a big hill so we ended up getting used to that. Glen Helen’s hill is definitely bigger than that.
What classes did you race last week?
I raced 125 Novice.
Let’s talk about the day of racing. How did practice go, for starters?
Practice was good. The track was nice. That was the morning practice and then racing started.
Did you know anybody in your class?
No, just my buddy. He was on a 125 also.
What’s his name? Let’s give him some love.
Declan Cosgrove. (He finished 18-17 for 18th)
How did moto 1 go? How did you like that long start?
That was fun. There were 22 riders so it was pretty good. I think I was 5th or 6th out of the hole. The first moto, I was really tired after about 2 laps. I just tried to hang on and stay where I was. I’m pretty sure I ran 6th for most of the race and that’s where I finished.
OK, and how about the 2nd moto?
That one was good. I was running 5th…I think I was 4th out of the holeshot and then I was 5th until the last lap. I was battling with this one guy and at the bottom of the big hill he squeezed in and I ended up hitting his back wheel and falling over, so I finished 7th. That gave me 6th overall. (7-7 6th overall)
I heard you’re racing again this weekend. What is it this week?
It’s the Area Qualifier for Loretta’s at Glen Helen.
Have you been to Loretta’s before?
No, the only thing is last year we raced the qualifier and didn’t make it.
What classes are you shooting for at Loretta’s?
We’re gonna race Schoolboy 1, 125 B/C, and 125 C.
What’s your racing plan for this coming summer?
In Manitoba, I’ll be in the Schoolboy class and 250 B. We’re going to go to Calgary for the Walton Qualifier. If I qualify for that, we’ll probably come back to California in the summer for training.
So, your goal is to keep working your way up to the Pro ranks, I assume?
Ya, that’s what I want to do. Hopefully, get on some type of team.
How about amateur day at round 4 in Manitoba?
Yep, we’ll be racing that one on amateur day.
So, your plan is to race Loretta’s and Walton this summer?
Yep, that’d be the plan.
Are you in school or are you home-schooled?
I’m in school.
Doesn’t sound like it!
(Laughs) Ya, gonna be missing quite a bit, but…
What grade are you in?
I’m in grade 10.
OK, well it was good to get to know you a little bit. Good luck with your racing and we’ll see you out west in the summer. Who would you like to thank?
Thank you. Talk to you later. I’d like to thank BSN Heavy Duty Repair, Lenway Farm, Woodrow Mechanical, TwoZeroFour Skate Shop, and SDO Custom Carpentry.