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James The Rocket Rispoli Wins 2011 for AMA Pro SuperSport East Championship

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Rispoli credits better training and more seat time on his K&N backed ANT Racing/STAR School/NationalGuard.com Suzuki GSX-R600 for his stellar season.
Rispoli credits better training and more seat time on his K&N backed ANT Racing/STAR School/NationalGuard.com Suzuki GSX-R600 for his stellar season.
2011 AMA Pro SuperSport East Champion, James Rispoli had the sort of race season he'll be talking about while playing checkers in the park 50 years from now. Not because it will be his high-water mark by any means, with his skill it's anyone's guess as to how high that gets set, but rather because 2011 was his first full season in professional road racing, and it was nuts for the 21-year-old Ormond Beach, Florida resident. Rispoli won two times on his K&N backed ANT Racing/STAR School/NationalGuard.com Suzuki GSX-R600, and he made it to the podium in all but one round of the SuperSport races he entered. His consistency earned him the 2011 for AMA Pro SuperSport East Championship, and the Young Gun Award.
2011 was James
2011 was James "The Rocket" Rispoli's first full season in professional road racing.


The headline on his press release and website reads "We are the Champions" leading us to assume he's a fan of the hit song by Queen. "Is that who did that song," remarked Rispoli laughing. "Being a champion is what I try to be both on and off the track. The AMA Pro SuperSport title was just one of those goals I was able to achieve early in my career. The real champions are all the sponsors and fans that support the sport I love."

When listing a few highlights from his 2011 season Rispoli told K&N, "Well, I picked up some great sponsors that helped pay the bills like Pittsburgh Electrical Insulation, Shakti Warriors and Techmounts. In addition the STAR School helped bring in my National Guard sponsor, without their support the season could not have happened at all. I also have to thank Ant Racing for stepping up and coordinating the team, managing the budget and the day-to-day efforts."

Asked what lessons he will take from 2011 and build on in the 2012 season Rispoli says, "First that training and seat time makes a huge difference. I got on a better training program with the help of Monster Energy and got the help of trainers from GG Events Management in Daytona. Living in Daytona for the off season allowed me to train everyday outside. Also, I trained every chance I got with Jason Pridmore and the STAR School which gave me lots of track time and riding tips."
The K&N sponsored 2011 AMA Pro SuperSport East Champion only missed the podium in one race last season.
The K&N sponsored 2011 AMA Pro SuperSport East Champion only missed the podium in one race last season.


"We had a phenomenal 2011. Going into next season, I need to figure out qualifying more, how to better tell where I'm at on the track instead of looking down at a lap timer. Another goal is to ride at the front of the pack better by racing the track. This past season I had a mental block when riding my own race, and I know I can race against anybody, but I'd like to improve when racing against myself. I want to win as many races as I can. If I can win some doubleheaders, I'd be really pleased with that."

"Man I have been sponsored by K&N for a long time," continues Rispoli, "Throughout my amateur career and now into my pro racing career. We have done a lot together. We co-branded helmets and I have been using K&N go-fast products in everything we race and drive. They are a great company that has supported not just me but the sport for a long time."

Who is it you look up to as a race hero? Valentino Rossi would have to be the guy. He's always been the guy I would like to be like. I try to align myself with him, and I look up to him as a racer and a person. If he had no chance of winning, I'd pick him, just because he's so much fun to watch."

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