Welcome to Racer X Next, where we interview up and coming amateur racers. We'll check in with racers on topics such as their training program to qualifying for and competing at the AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship at Loretta Lynn Ranch, and much more.
This week, we talk with Tennessee native Nate Thrasher.
Racer X: So we are out here at Daytona International Speedway for the Ricky Carmichael Amateur Supercross in Daytona, what classes did you race today and how did you end up?
Nate Thrasher: Today I raced 450 and 250 B Limited and Schoolboy 2. I won 450 B Limited and Schoolboy 2, and I think 11th in 250 B Limited. I went down off the start and tried to make my way back through, with only eight laps there’s not too much time to make the passes I needed to make to get back up front.
What are your plans for the next couple weeks? Spring nationals?
We are headed to Underground in Texas to train there before Spring a Ding Ding and Freestone. After that I will head out to California to test a little bit and do the California Classic.
Sounds busy. So where is home for you?
I’m from Tennessee but I just made the move down to Florida full time to train at the Baker’s Factory. I started with them in October of last year in California and then went to Florida about a month ago. It’s been really good so far.
What does your road to Loretta’s look like? Have you done any qualifiers yet?
Yeah! So I already did the Southeast area qualifier at Gatorback Cycle Park and then in three weeks I will do the South Central area qualifier at Thunder Valley on the way to California for some testing and the California Classic at Fox Raceway [at Pala]. After that I will do the Mid-East area at RedBud MX in May, then onto Regional qualifiers. I’m not sure if I will do any other races in-between those and Loretta’s. We will see what the team wants to do.
Wow, so kind of a busy spring. What are your goals for Loretta’s?
Yeah! Busy. I hope to sweep again like I did when I was on Supermini’s. I didn’t get to race last year because I had ruptured my spleen. So I am really looking forward to getting back to the ranch.
So how did you get into racing?
My brother used to race so I went to the track as a kid and just kinda fell in love with it. I got a bike when I was around three years old and starting riding. We always did a bunch of local stuff and then I made it to Loretta’s for the first time when I was ten years old. After that year we got more serious about our racing efforts, I started training somewhere and was working really hard on getting better and better, and now here I am!
Who do you look up to the most in the pro ranks?
I’ve always liked Ken Roczen because he works really hard, he’s overcome a lot of adversity and it’s inspiring. I actually did a research paper on his arm injury from 2017. It was really gnarly. I actually don’t even know how he is riding right now. What he went through, most people don’t even move their arm after that. So to be riding at all, and then at the level that he is? It’s amazing. With the compartment syndrome and all the pain meds, which they say only help 50 percent of the pain, it’s just gnarly.
That’s awesome. What school program are you in?
I’m in Abeka homeschool, so it’s not online, it’s books at home, and I turn everything into my mom.
Nice. So what does 2021 look like for you? What’s the next step?
I did not do any Supercross Futures this year, so I will focus on that to get the points for my pro license, then I will make my pro debut at Hangtown 2021 and do the full season. Then I will be a full-time pro for 2022 with the TLD KTM Team.
Main Image: Andrew Fredrickson