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Saugus junior dominates racing world

Named AMA Road Race Rookie for 2008

Posted: December 2, 2008 9:51 p.m.
Updated: December 3, 2008 4:30 a.m.

Tommy Aquino was named the 2008 AMA Road Race Rookie of the Year.

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The American Motorcyclist Association super-bike racing world is a competitive one involving racing high-speed motorcycles on paved tracks.

Saugus High School junior Tommy Aquino got into AMA road racing before he was in kindergarten.

"I began riding dirt bikes at the age of four and road racing at the age of nine," Aquino said. "I've loved it ever since."

Aquino began his professional riding career in May. AMA racing is a competitive motor sport suitable for those only willing to work hard to accomplish goals. Aquino knows this only too well. After his first hard-working season, he is already seeing tremendous results.

On Oct. 6, Aquino was named the 2008 AMA Road Race Rookie of the Year.

"It feels great to be named Rookie of the Year," Aquino said. "You only have one chance to get it since you only have one rookie season. It is a really great accomplishment, and I am proud."

Motorcycles moving at top speeds are extremely dangerous, something all motorcycle riders and racers have to consider.

Without the risk, Aquino would have never had the successful season he did. Along with being named Rookie of the Year, he placed seventh in the Laguna Seca race in Monterey on July 20.

He already has his sights set on next season, hoping to achieve more. Recently, he signed a two-year contract with Yamaha as a factory rider, and another two-year contract with Shoei Helmet Company.

Although he may work hard, Aquino receives inspiration and support from various figures in his life. His younger brother Michael, also a racer, is his biggest fan and supporter. His mother, without whom his racing career would not be possible, drives the family motorhome around the country to take him to races.

"The two most inspirational people to me are my father and the greatest road racer of all time, Valentino Rossi," Aquino said. "Valentino has a unique style and an inspirational way of looking at life."

With the inspiration of his father and Valentino Rossi on his side, along with tremendous support from his brother and mother, Aquino hopes to make it all the way to the top in his career.

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