Zach Osborne says he's anxious to start his new career as a full-time Supercross racer in the U.S. After spending much of his profession racing years in Europe chasing the MX2 World Championship, the Virginian is now firmly planted in the U.S. now, ready to set his sights on a 250 Supercross title on his new GEICO Honda team.
"I did four-and-a-half seasons in Europe," Osborne said of his time spent across the Atlantic. "I was a huge change for me compared to living in the States, where it's set up as the land of convenience. In Europe, daily life can be much tougher and not-so convenient.
"It definitely taught me patience and I grew up as a person. It was a great opportunity to ride a lot of different tracks in a lot of different places, which has prepared me for just about anything.
Zach Osborne says he's ready to start racing again on his new GEICO Honda.
"Quite often you would go to places where they didn't speak any English," he said. "Other places they'd speak loads of English. I never really learned a full second language, but I did learn bits and pieces of enough other languages to get by."
In 2012, he decided to race the first four rounds of Lites West in Supercross before heading over to Europe. His objective was to make an impression with some American teams. With two podium finishes in those four races, Osborne quickly reached his goal.
"I think those two podiums showed what I was capable of doing," Osborne said. "I did a lot of work behind the scenes to get the results I got and to get where I am. I rode by myself, mostly, on the East Coast and just kept pushing and pushing to get better. The fear of the unknown about what everyone else was doing helped push me along."
Now 23 years of age, Osborne is no longer eligible to compete in the MX2 class in Europe anymore, but it didn't take long for him to land a new full-time gig in the U.S. The GEICO Honda team always had an interest in the veteran racer, especially after his impressive performance in the early rounds of the 2012 West 250 Supercross Series.
"I was super-pumped when I heard from them," Osborne said. "I was expecting to hear from somebody after those two podiums. I was thankful I got the call, and happy to have the opportunity to be a part of such a great team.
"I tried to be cool but at the same time it's hard to hold your emotions in. I worked five years in Europe to be in that position, so it was hard to contain myself completely."
Osborne caught the attention of the GEICO team when he landed two podiums in the early rounds of the 2012 West 250 Supercross season.
Osborne comes from a racing background, as his father, Mark, was a professional drag racer in the NHRA's Pro Stock class. Zach said that straight line racing never sparked his passion quite the way dirt bike racing does.
"I didn't think much of drag racing when I was a kid," he said. "I actually like it more now than when my dad was still racing. But racing dirt bikes was what came naturally to me and I stuck with it."
Osborne will again be easily identified by his traditional three-digit 338 number.
The GEICO Honda team has not yet officially announced which 250 series its riders will compete in but you know that whichever side Osborne is on - east or west - you know he'll be a title contender.