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Tazio Torregiani pursues his car racing dream
Rich DePreta, Staff Writer
Updated 10:27 p.m., Saturday, January 28, 2012
STAMFORD -- One of the wonders of youth is having dreams of the future.
Tazio Torregiani is well on his way of turning his dream into reality.
The 13-year-old 7th grade student at Dolan Middle School in Stamford has been Go-Kart racing since age 6 and has graduated from Cadet class to Junior Class on the National racing circuit.
"It's fun. But I love the competition and challenge of racing," Tazio Torregiani said. "When I'm on the track, I love the speed and I love the feeling behind the wheel. When I hit the gas, the whole world goes away."
And when Torregiani jumps back into his Sprint Go-Kart (Junior Class, ages 13-15, speeds of 70-75 mph) this spring, he will be driving at Englishtown, N.J., Daytona (Fla.) Speedway and even the street track circuit in Las Vegas.
"The Junior Class Regional Championship is a five-race series. The World Karting Association Manufacturers National Cup is a six-race series," said Tazio's Dad, Patrizio Torregiani. "The Super Nationals are in November in Las Vegas. Tazio could race as much as three weekends out of every month once the warm weather returns to the Northeast."
Torregiani closed out his Cadet Class (age 8-12) racing career in grand style with impressive outings in Las Vegas last November and Daytona last December facing drivers from across the country and across the globe.
Torregiani is quickly becoming a brand.
He has a website (visit www.NewCountryPorsche.com to access TazioRacing.com). Torregiani is on Facebook. Torregiani has product sponsors. He has Doug Fleming in charge of his racing engines.
But most important of all, there is his father, Patrizio Torregiani. Patrizio Torregiani has been a Porsche Certified Sales Specialist at New Country Porsche of Greenwich for 13 years.
"When I was growing up in Italy, my dad was a big Formula One racing fan. I had the dream to race. But not the opportunity," Patrizio Torregiani said. "My wife (Lucia) and I named Tazio after Tazio Nuvolari. He was a great Grand Prix race driver in Italy in the 1930s. When Tazio showed interest in Go-Kart driving, I wanted to give him the opportunity."
Tazio Torregiani remembers his first brush with racing like it was yesterday.
"I was age 6 and our family was in Portugal on vacation. We all went to the local go-kart driving place and everybody rode," Torregiani recounted. "I was thrilled with how fast the laps were. The track owner said to my dad after we finished `You should get your son a cart.' "
It was in Cuddybackville, N.Y. near Middletown and Wappinger Falls that Torregiani began racing and eventually came under the tutelage of Mike Doty, a multiple National Karting Champion.
Doty remains Torregiani's coach today with Torregiani driving under the banner of Mike Doty Racing.
As one might expect, Tazio Torregiani's racing dream/career has become a family affair.
His father is the marketing specialist. Lucia, his mother, is the logistics expert for the weekend trips to Englishtown, N.J. and beyond as well as the long adventures to Las Vegas and Daytona.
Younger brother Dario (age 11) is a mechanic who works with the pit crew during races.
"We're fortunate that Mom is on board 100 percent with this," Patrizio Torregiani said. "We can't do this without the whole family taking part."
The first priority for 2012 is to find some national sponsors. The second priority is to keep racing and draw the attention of the young driver academys that Ferrari and Porsche among others run with an eye toward developing the next Formula One star.
Toward that end, Torregiani might compete in Italy or Portugal in 2012.
"The sport of racing is huge in Europe. All of the best engines come from Italy," Patrizio Torregiani said. "We'd love to do one or two races in Italy. The level of competition makes everybody a better driver."
Only time will tell how far Tazio Torregiani will take his dream.
"My ultimate goal is to get to professional car racing," Tazio said. "Right now, I know I have time on my side. I'll keep working hard and see what will happen."