The other day at Pala Raceway, we noticed a young kid along side several team mechanics and he was giving pit board signals for Matt Lemoine. Admittedly, it took a little while to recognize that he was not just another kid at the track, but Rockstar/Makita/Suzuki's rider Nico Izzi. At the very last round of the East Coast Supercross Lites series in Jacksonville, Nico ejected off his bike in mid-air over a triple, all of three turns away from finishing third place at the event. Since then, not much news has been leaked out as to where or what is happening with Izzi, so it was a relief to see him up and walking about. We chatted with Nico for a few minutes while Lemoine took a rest from his motos to find out how everything is going, and what lies ahead for the future.
What have you been up to lately? It has been a while since we heard any news from your camp.
Not much, just doing a lot of rehab. I had to wait a long time on my foot. I just got off crutches and I have just really been focusing on Supercross for next year. I am not coming back for any Nationals; I just don't want to push it. My team wasn't pushing me, which is nice. Its good knowing that I can just let it heal and focus on getting healthy again so when I do come back I know that I'll be 100 percent. It always sucks if you have to rush back and are not completely ready, especially with this injury, which is the worst I have ever had. So I have just been sitting at home and the past couple of days, I have come out to the track. I just missed it a lot and if I sit at home I get all depressed, so I have been coming out here with Matt Lemoine and helping him out as much as I can. I should be able to start road biking and training in the next couple of weeks. Once I start training again I will be a lot happier and will be able to put a lot of time into it and that will be nice.
So you have not been able to train at all?
No, I have really just been sitting on the couch, playing video games, watching movies, and hanging out; it has been super boring. After Jacksonville, I lived in the hospital for about four and a half weeks; it was really bad. It was not the way I wanted to end in Supercross. I feel like I did really good in Supercross and was pretty bummed because I thought I would have done well outdoors, but I have to just keep looking forward to the future and be ready.
Go through your injury. What actually happened?
I came out of a turn on the last lap of the main and was expecting another third place on my way to the finish line. I was in second gear and my bike jumped to first really quick and it seemed like the last five feet on the face of the triple my bike went into neutral and I wasn't even expecting it. The next thing I know my bike is upside down and I am jumping off it. That triple was also a lot bigger than the other triple on the track. It was scary, definitely once of my scariest crashes. When I landed, I didn't know my heel was broken at first until I got up. I went to run off the track because I knew Austin Stroupe was right behind me and when I put weight on my foot, I felt it kind of mush down. When I was laying on the tuff block I felt a bunch of warm stuff in my boot and I knew right then and there that it was broken. They took me back to the Asterisk rig and they found that it blew a hole straight through my foot, right through the bottom of my heel. There was a bunch of blood in my boot, so they cut it off.
(Matt Lemoine chimes in) Thanks to Nico I lost to positions on that crash (Nico laughs). When the lights flashed on the triple, I was already about to take off and I wasn't about to slam on the brakes so I double it and they docked me two positions. So it sucked (laughs)!
Yeah, I'm laying there with a broken heal and my boy is complaining about losing two positions. I don't know what's worse (laughs). But they took me to this crappy hospital in Jacksonville for a couple of days. They weren't putting me on the right pain medicine and I was in a lot of pain. They wouldn't even transfer me. I was stuck there, so my Dad just loaded me up in the truck and took me to a better hospital and they took god care of me there. I was there for about two weeks.
You were in the hospital the whole time? You couldn't leave?
We were waiting on the surgery and my foot was so swollen that they couldn't operate. I was in so much pain that I had to constantly be on pain medication. After surgery I went to Ronnie Tichenor's for a week and I had to have a check up and get my stitches taken out. I flew home the day after and have been sitting at home here in California, just bored out of my mind. I have been saving some money though and will hopefully be buying a house pretty soon. I'm just chillin' and looking forward to new contracts coming up.
What is your deal with Rockstar/Makita/Suzuki?
I'm not signed for next year right now. I have a couple of offers that I am pretty excited about though. There is still a chance that I could remain with Suzuki. But that is all about their budget. If they are going to have a 250 team, then I would be their rider, but if not then I will have to go somewhere else. I would love to stay at Suzuki, I have been there forever, but if I had to go somewhere else I wouldn't be too bummed about it. I know that if I put in the time and effort, I can do well on any bike. I'm ready to get back and will probably be able to start riding again in about another seven or eight weeks. Otherwise I will just be hanging out until then. My birthday is coming up pretty soon though and I will be 19 years old.