Lathyn Villegas of Apache Junction races a quarter midget race car, has sponsors and has won in the top three in 15 races.
Quite an accomplishment for a 5-year-old who recently started kindergarten at Desert Vista Elementary School in the Apache Junction Unified School District.
“We are a local family in Apache Junction,” his father, James, said. “We race in Tucson, Albuquerque and have trips planned to California, Colorado and other surrounding states.”
Learning about Lathyn may “help other local kids who don’t know about this racing and maybe would like to get involved to keep them off the streets and out of trouble,” James Villegas said.
As he prepares for his next race around the track, we get to know Lathyn better and learn about the athlete behind the wheel.
- What school will you be attending?: Desert Vista Elementary School.
- When did you start racing?: I started racing at 5 years old.
- What are some of the races you have won or placed at?: I have won races in Tucson, Arizona, and Albuquerque, New Mexico. I have had 18 total races so far and have placed in the top three 15 times.
- Car/racing sponsors: My sponsors are J n J Remodeling, Valley Turns and Renos, RCR and Watkins Handyman Services. I am looking for more to help me further my dreams.
- What is your favorite racing track and why?: My favorite track is in Tucson. That’s because most of my racing friends are in that organization.
- What are you known for on the track?: I’m known at the Tucson track for being sky and going fast.
- What is your favorite part of racing and why?: My favorite part of racing is going fast and competing with other kids.
- Who is your favorite driver?: My dad is my favorite driver in the whole world.
- What advice would you give to someone wanting to get into racing?: My advice is to be nice to your parents so they will buy you a race car.
- What are some of your hobbies?: I like to play with Legos and color in books. I also like riding my bike at home.
- What’s your favorite sport and team?: I like the Dallas Cowboys.
- What originally brought you to the Valley?: I was born here in Arizona.
- What’s one thing you want people to know about you?: I am shy, but I like to go fast in my race car.
- What’s your favorite movie?: I like “Sonic the Hedgehog.”
- What’s your favorite vacation spot?: Let’s go to Disneyland.
- What is something many people don’t know about you?: I’m scared to sleep in my own bed so I sleep with Mommy and Daddy.