After losing his factory ride with KTM back in 2007, Zach Osborne headed off to Europe where he had mixed success during five years on the GP circuit. Last year, the 24-year-old rode the first few Supercross rounds in the West Coast Lites division as a privateer in hopes of securing a ride here in the States before heading back to Europe. For the 2013 season the Virginia rider was picked up by the powerful GEICO Honda team where he has had some pretty impressive finishes so far in the 250 class. He also has been selected to compete on the U.S. World Trophy Team at this year’s ISDE in Italy.
Q: What is the main difference between racing here in America and racing the GPs in Europe?
A: There’s a huge difference. Here we have a one-day race, over there it’s a two-day race, which means more time on the bike. Over here, the race day goes by so fast, but it’s easier on the body and the bike. Travel over here is a lot easier than it is over there. In fact, just about everything is easier over here.
Q: What about the tracks; are they quite a bit different?
A: The main thing with the tracks is that over here they are mainly all prepared the same: disked up. In Europe, anything can happen. Either they don’t prep the track at all, or they over-water it.
Q: Is the competition a lot deeper over here?
A: No, I don’t think so. I mean, I was top five over there and I’m top five over here.
Q: What made you decide to go to Europe in the first place?
A: I was out of options here. KTM had just let me go in 2007, and then I was injured in 2008 and I was struggling, so I had an opportunity to race a two-race deal in Europe, a British round and a GP, so I took it to see how I would do. I ended up staying for five years.
Q: How is the GEICO Honda deal working out for you?
A: GEICO Honda approached me after my success in last year’s Supercross races and I signed a letter of intent to ride for them. And so far it’s been great. I really like the team.
Q: How would you rate your year so far in 2013?
A: Things are going okay for me. I’ve had some good rides, but nothing spectacular. I got on the podium at the Seattle Supercross, but it was just an okay ride for me, really. Since the outdoors have started, I’ve been strong basically every weekend and I’ve got two podiums so far.
Q: You also got selected to ride on the U.S. World Trophy Team at this year’s ISDE in Italy.
A: Yeah, I am looking forward to that. I’ve been practicing my tired changes every day and I think I can be a help to the team.
Q: A lot of people may not know that you ride off-road from time to time.
A: Yeah, I rode the first two GNCC races this year, one in Florida and one in Georgia. I’m also going to do the Unadilla GNCC to get ready for Six Days.