It was probably a foregone conclusion that young Nixon Frost would one day follow in his dad’s footsteps, or should that be wheel tracks?
The 11-year-old has a fine motorcycling pedigree, with his father none other than Sloan Frost, a multi-time champion on the road-racing scene in New Zealand.
And now, with the blessing and support of Motorcycling New Zealand, fledgling road-racer Nixon Frost is heading across the Tasman Sea to see how far he can go with the sport in Australia.
“I’m really excited about this opportunity,” said young Frost. “We head off on January 27th and again on February 23rd. I know it’s going to be quite hard.
“I have learned a lot from dad. I’ve been racing go-karts a long time, so I do already have some experience with motor-racing.”
His father, mentor and coach, former motocross racer Sloan Frost, was twice New Zealand Superbike Champion, in 2016 and 2018, and Suzuki International Series champion in 2015 and so it’s his experiences with that which has been the foundation for Nixon’s growth and development within motorcycling.
“I never really encouraged this,” exclaimed Frost senior. “Usually you get into this through motocross or something like that … another bike code … but we’ve been chasing the go-karts. It’s a similar sport. You don’t have the same lean angles and all that, but the skills of late braking, early accelerating, picking lines and things like that are all the same.
“We got a little KTM electric bike and now, just one month later, he’s showing promise already. He’s not going fast by any means, but what he’s doing on the bike is really impressive for a complete beginner.
“Some people, spend a lifetime trying to get their knee down, but he did that straight away, on his first ride. He’s carrying good corner speed and has a good style. He’s on a 150cc bike now and we’ve modified the seat to suit him. We have to hold him up to push him off at the start, but once he gets going and gets on the track, he’s no concern at all.
“Motorcycling New Zealand (MNZ) and Motorcycling Australia (MA) have been running the FIM Oceania Junior Cup between them in recent years and it has been really successful. Cormac Buchanan (from Invercargill) went through it and we all know how success he has become within the sport, going on to race in Europe, so there is a clear pathway for Nixon here.
“As it happened, in these difficult times with the COVID-19 pandemic, it has been difficult for some to feel comfortable committing and the opportunity was there and needed to be taken. It was probably a bit too early for us, but we have a lot of support in Australia and friends there. Nixon has been to Phillip Island with me when I raced there and so it all added up.
“A huge thanks to MNZ for making this happen. It’s days like this, even at a low-key track day here at Manfeild, that you appreciate how much MNZ does, taking a back seat but making things happen for the riders. I see how much effort the volunteers do. With MNZ’s backing we are now going off to compete internationally.”
MNZ general manager Michael Kerrisk said he was thrilled to see it all come together for Nixon Frost.
“We’ve offered this opportunity to get young Nixon over to Australia and represent New Zealand and put his best foot forward,” he said.
“We are delighted to have this relationship with Motorcycling Australia and they absolutely want this too.
“Nixon met the requirements of the MNZ Board and we look forward to hearing about the progress with his riding.”
Words & photo: Andy McGechan