Just trying to reinforce the fact that reviews in a mag aren't going to mean a darn thing to a novice racer. There are a million other things to think about besides that.
Yeah, our KFGs in the AFM can run up a class on a 600 and kick-a**, but the average or new racer needs something to LEARN on first. A lot of racers I know started out on bigger bikes, but didn't get much faster because they developed bad habits. It took time and some good mentoring for those racers to eliminate those habits. Granted, there are guys who can just start racing on anything and really wail, but they are the exception to the rule.
Starting out on a smaller, slower bike forces you to concentrate on the fundamentals of racing. Not worrying about trying to blast past another guy on the straight, but developing corner speed, braking, etiquette etc. (among MANY other things). Slower bikes are more forgiving too.
I raced a Ninja 250, not an Aprillia
Sloooow in retrospect, but as I got faster, heh, heh, I was passing guys in the corners on Gixxer and Yami 750s and 1K's. Now THAT was cool! Pissed them off too.
Dave who has those 2-stroke bikes in the other post will tell you, they are a lot of maintenance. I have several friends racing the RS bikes. Cool stuff, and one dude is hella fast! It is great seeing him BEAT GIXXER 1K's at Thunderhill in CA, a KNOWN HP track! So those bikes have the ability, but the rider is what counts. If you go the RS route, make SURE you have an idea on how to rebuild that motor and do all the maintenance. Get the tools for her too.
That is why I suggested a torquey, smaller 4-stroke. Less headaches and more seat time. Seat time is what you need now, and lots of it.