Athlete Interview: Nick Lando


Nick
grew up around 2 wheels. His father had taught him to ride a dirt bike at the age of 3 and a bicycle (without training wheels) by age 4. The only thing that matter to Nick throughout his childhood was riding his dirt bike.

At the age of 13, Nick‘s mother Renee took him mountain biking each weekend. It was not long before a passion sparked inside of Nick. He shortly after began racing in the H2H series at the age of 14.

Nick has now climbed through the ranks and is one of the top mountain bike racers on the east coast. He races against some of the fastest riders in the country in the biggest UCI sanctioned races that North America has to offer. 

Additionally Nick is a student at the University of Vermont where he races at a national level in mountain bike, cyclocross, and road racing.

Height: 6’0”

December Weight: 175 lbs.

Race Weight: 158 lbs.

Birthdate: February 13th 1997.

Childhood Heroes: Ricky Carmichael, James Stewart

Hobbies and Interests: Nordic Skiing, Riding anything with 2 wheels

Favorite Movies: 21, 127 hours, Talladega Nights

Musical Tastes: 21 Pilots, Portugal the Man, Hopsin, Eminem – anything that makes me feel like a badass when riding trainer!

Favorite TV Shows: The Office, How I Met Your Mother, Gossip Girl

Favorite Meal: I can make some seriously good Veggie Burritos……or sushi. Hard to go wrong with sushi.

Favorite Breakfast Cereal: Simple Granola

Favorite Pre-Race Meal: I am not telling my secrets.

Favorite Ice Cream Flavor: Ben and Jerry’s Milk and Cookies

Childhood Dream: Professional Motocross Racer

First Car: Car? What Car? I am a baller on a budget. I’ll ride my bike.

First Job: When I ran up my cell phone bill in the 6th grade, I went door to door asking people if I could shovel their driveway for them.

Favorite Vacation Spot: If I want to get fat, a cruise. If I want to get fit, Killington, VT in July.

Pre-Race Feeling: Is now a good time to poop?

Early Racing Memory: First race ever in Cat3 10-14 as a 14 year old I came across the line thinking that I won but I found out that I got last place……by a lot.

Funny Racing Memory: At the West Point Collegiate Short Track, they wanted us to do a Le mans start….so we (all of the Men’s A category) ran past the bikes and ran a lap of the short track course before getting on our bikes.

Greatest Racing Moment: Winning the Sprint of the collegiate team relay to help my team get the national championship cyclocross team relay title. I wouldn’t say I am a national champion or anything but that was arguably the most intense and exciting 8 minutes of my racing career.

Most Painful Moment In Life: Emotionally: Being told I have cancer. Physically: The recovery process from the surgery to treat said cancer.

Worst Injury from Racing: Doing a downhill race at Mountain Creek Bike Park. I just remember dropping in and hitting all my lines. Next thing I know, I feel like I am in a dream but sitting on the bottom of the trail with everyone around me telling me they found me face down on a rock slab.

Closest Racing Friends: UVM Cycling, Ken Lundgren

Funniest Racer: Gabe Lavendel. I don’t know anybody who is more “California” than him. Hell, he had a documentary made about his life when he was in high school 

Favorite Race: Gnar Weasels the year it was at diamond hill or The Chainstretcher XC at blue mountain

Embarrassing Racing Memory: West Point Road Race. I was in the chase group and we had a gap. I decided to go to the back of the group and start peeing (not like the pros, like my chamois was a diaper) and just as I was mid stream we had a gap large enough to get our own chase vehicle so the Army has witnessed me pee my pants.

Toughest Competitors: Everyone. No matter who you are or how much you train, there is always someone somewhere doing more than you.

Favorite Athletes to Watch: Ken Roczen, Elit Tomac, Ryan Dungey, Nino Schurter

Qualities You Most Admire in People: Righteousness

What You Love Most About Riding Your Bicycle: Those few rides per year where the weather is perfect, the dirt is has the perfect mixture of drift and tackiness, legs feel good, and you feel unstoppable. I live for days like that. Unfortunately they happen about 5 days out of the year and 4 of them happen during training.