Monday Conversation: Nico Izzi

August 20, 2007 6:23am

Roger DeCoster has had some good picks lately. He signed the young, unproven Ryan Dungey in what has turned out to be a brilliant move. He also got that Carmichael guy on the team for a few years and now he has one of the hottest young riders coming out of the amateur ranks; Nico Izzi. Will Izzi be as successful as Dungey has become? Only time will tell but if his first national was any indication, Roger might be looking like a genius once again.

Racer X: Nico, you met your goal of a top-ten overall. Nice job!
Nico Izzi: Thanks. The main thing was that I just wanted to get some experience and see what the nationals are all about and I did that. The starts are gnarly and the first half lap is the scariest part of the whole moto; guys are going crazy and stuff. I worked my way up to eighth the first moto and stayed there. I was pretty pumped with that but after the race I was pretty spent. The second moto I wanted to get a good start so I wouldn’t have to work so hard but unfortunately I got a worse start and had to work harder than the first moto.

At Loretta’s you only had two other guys to contend with, Canard and Stroupe, but at a national there are at least twenty really fast guys.
Oh yeah, at an amateur race once you get into the top five you have to start fighting for passes. At the national you fight for every spot right off the bat.

How was your fitness?
Fitness could always be better. I’m not even close to Townley and Villopoto right now. I was dead after the first moto. But I knew that going in and I just wanted to jump in and learn and see what I needed to work on for next year. I am working with Ryan Hughes now for about a month and a half and I think that is going to start paying off with a little more time. I get to ride with Metcalfe all the time because he trains with Ryno too. It should be really good.

So, are you going to spend a lot of time out here in California?
Yeah, I’m out here now and I’ll be coming back here after the rest of the races to test and train. I’ll be out here for most of the supercross season to test also. There are so many pros out here to ride with it makes it better.

Do you know what coast you’re riding yet?
I don’t know. It could be either one, really. They haven’t really said and I don’t know.

Did you have any “welcome to the pros” moments last weekend? I remember T-boning Hepler at his first race in Millville. He beat me anyway.
No, I didn’t have anyone do anything like that. I did have a pretty good battle with Hill and he was cutting me off and stuff. But it wasn’t that bad.

Canard got a fourth in one moto. You have to feel good about that knowing that you can run his speed.
Yeah, well he got the holeshot and he just followed the really quick guys at the front. All you have to do is run with the leaders for a little while and you pull a gap on the rest of the field. The goal at Steel City is to get a good start and just stay up there.

How is the factory bike compared to what you’ve been riding?
It’s sick. It is so awesome. It is wicked fast and it handles so good. The team is awesome and everything is just really good. I’m excited to keep training and just try to improve my results.

Well, don’t let Ryno run you into the ground. He and Metcalfe have been training all summer.
Yeah, for sure. He makes us work hard.

Good job last weekend, Nico.
Thanks Ping.