Nancy Knapp Schilke
Gabriel Da Silva has the desire and determination to reach his MotoGP goal
At the age of seven, Gabriel Da Silva has confirmed his earlier goal and plans to stick with it. He is not the first young racer who ever had the determination to reach the pinnacle in motor sports as a top rider or driver; which has been proven over the years by many young kids who later became world champions, including Sebastian Vettel last year. Da Silva was born in Florida and his family heritage is from a country that has produced top racers in all disciplines of two-wheel or four-wheel vehicles. With the Brazilian blood that runs through his veins, one would expect Formula One; but Da Silva’s choice is bikes and his goal is MotoGP.
Affectingly nicknamed by his fans already, the “Mini Valentino” was on a motorcycle at the age of seven months when his dad took him for his first spin. Before he was a year old, he already had his first motorcycle for toddlers and at the age of two, he was riding without training wheels. At three, he was ready to practice on race tracks.
One has to wonder if the nine time world champion Valentino Rossi was the same when he was a toddler. Having a dream and being able to pursue it takes more than just family support and encouragement; it also takes determination, along with real passion. Da Silva appears to have all the ingredients to make his dream come true.
“Big G” has the ingredients necessary as he is always improving his performance on the track. Of course Da Silva has had the proper race schooling along with technical assistance but still he surprises others with his desire to continue to learn, to stick with a fitness program and balance his time. The seven-year-old received his first trophy at the age of four on February 3, 2008 in a race that included adults. There is no doubt that this young rider believes in himself and his talent which is remarkable considering he is still a kid. Da Silva is the first to admit that his faith in God is one of the main keys to his success.
It is not an easy road that he has chosen but he takes on the challenge, which includes the fact that his feet do not touch the ground so someone has to hold his bike for the start of the races. Therefore, Da Silva starts from the back of the grid. His current race events are part of the Cam’s Mini Roadracing Association (CAMMRA). The program was started to allow the young racers a safe way to learn their craft. That school has been instrumental in Da Silva’s experience on and off the track. The race events for the most part have more than 18 competitors. Da Silva already shows his passion by enjoying the challenge.
He might start at the back of the grid but he constantly improves his position during the race. Da Silva demonstrates his techniques, his skills and his bold moves in every race. Since he first started to race at the age of four, he has put in over 4608 hours of track time, and at the age of seven, he already has a trophy case that holds more than 80 trophies.
Da Silva may be young but expect to see and hear his name often as he continues to climb the ladder to reach his ultimate goal. His desire, determination and more importantly his willing to learn as he continues to refine the skills he already has, we will see him climb that ladder. What is nice is he still enjoys being a kid and has fun in all he does in life. While he might be bold – much like Rossi – on the track, he always listens to his coaches and instructors, plus he seeks advice from other more experienced riders. Most importantly is his respect for others , along with how important his family is. His father is also his coach and advisor, and one can call him the “instigator” for placing his seven month old son on a motorcycle.
Da Silva is just one of many of those under 12 who are already learning their craft in the world of motor sports. Family support is the most vital part for the younger generation of racers and obviously, Da Silva has that in place.
His website was recently launched so his supporters and friends can keep up with his accomplishments. Gabriel Da Silva website.