I must admit that I have only spoken with Colt Nichols once before his first 250 Supercross win this past weekend. But with that said, when I did talk to him, I immediately liked him. Originally from Oklahoma, he was friendly, outgoing, and definitely ready for a race win. Injuries have caused Nichols some setbacks, but still, myself like many others felt that on any given weekend he was capable of being on top of the podium. I was pretty pumped for the Monster Energy/Yamalube/Star Racing rider to get his first win at Anaheim 1, and to be there to catch up with him.
BY JIM KIMBALL
COLT, WHEN IT WAS ANNOUNCED THAT THIS WAS YOUR FIRST SUPERCROSS WIN, I WAS SHOCKED, BECAUSE YOU CERTAINLY HAVE HAD THE POTENTIAL. Yes, I felt like I have had the potential, but it has been a long road to get here. I went from racing Arenacross to then really struggling to make main events my first few Supercross seasons. Now for it to finally get here, and for it to work out the way it did, it feels incredible. It almost felt like it was something that I had done a million times when I crossed that finish line. I had that vision in my head so many times and played it over and over and over. It was really more relief than anything, but it is just incredible; I feel like I am still on a high.
NOT THAT MANY PEOPLE EXPECTED YOU TO WIN AT A1 BECAUSE OF THE FAST LAP TIMES OF ADAM CIANCIARULO, AND YOUR TEAMMATE DYLAN FERRANDIS DURING QUALIFYING. Even through qualifying I got the A1 jitters going on. I felt like I was not really riding that great during the day program, but that was okay. I was not worried about that at all. We just wanted to come in and do our job in the main event when the points counted. I just got a great start and really tried to stay as focused as possible. Sometimes in practice you get pretty hyped up, and you are trying to run that one fast lap. But for that one main event, you have to do it for 15 minutes and I pride myself on that. I have been working really hard with my trainer Gareth Swanepoel, and we were prepared for that. For once, I was coming in healthy, and I was ready for that 15-minute main. I just tried to hit my marks every single lap and tried not to let anything derail me. I feel like I did a great job with that.
THERE USED TO BE A LOT OF DRAMA AT STAR YAMAHA, BUT YOU GUYS SEEM FRIENDLY, AND COMPLEMENTARY TO EACH OTHER. It is honestly incredible here, everybody on the team are just really, really good guys. I became really close with all of these guys, and we try to keep it fun. Of course, we want to beat each other, just like anybody else. You know, I don’t want to be second, even to my teammate. We try to keep it light and try to keep it fun, but at the end of the day, we are competitors. It is just the team that has been working so hard, and our bikes are so good. I was really glad that we just got to kind of showcase that tonight, going 1 and 2 and I am hoping we can do that all season.
HOW COOL IS IT TO HAVE THE RED PLATE? It is incredible. Everyone says the Red Plate carries some weight with it, and things like that, but this is a very privileged position to be in, you know? For myself, I want to go out there, and completely showcase that Red Plate as best I can. I want to go out there and of course win again and extend that lead a little bit. It is a first-time for me, so of course we are going to just have to keep it moving the way we have. It is the position that you want to be in, so I am hoping that I can embrace it the best I can and go out there and just do my job to the best of my ability.
YOU’VE BEEN WITH THE STAR RACING YAMAHA TEAM THE PAST TWO YEARS, BUT WHEN DID YOU START YOUR PRO CAREER? Well, I actually raced the West Coast Supercross series in 2016, under Cycle Trader Yamaha. That was my breakout year if you will, and that is what lead to me signing with the Star Racing Yamaha team. I really, really liked racing the West Coast series. That was my best season that I had, and I made it all the way through that season. I was based here in California, and I actually believe that lead to me racing it this year. We had planned for that the last two years, but I got hurt, and was bumped to East Coast series, but I have always wanted to race West. I like the dirt here, I like the travel. It is a lot easier, since I am based out here in California, so I am looking forward to the rest of the stadiums. I love racing in San Diego. I got my first podium in Oakland on the Cycle Trader team, so I am looking forward to going back there. I am hoping for a great fun and exciting year.