Ladies’ Night @Kartright #3: Go Faster

Written by Cheryl Tay on . Posted in Cheryl Tay Blog | Blog Post of Cheryl Tay

Photos courtesy of 9tro

 

The third Ladies’ Night @Kartright was more successful than ever, with the ladies having much fun and enjoying themselves immensely.

 

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Coached by Singaporean touring car racer Gerald Tan, we saw the return of some familiar faces like Jessica Koh, Yeo Pek Wei and Cheryl Yeo, who came for previous Ladies’ Night @Kartright sessions.

 

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This time the weather was dry to the bone and the ground was eagerly anticipating the dominance of us women.

 

We started off with an introduction and the theory lesson as usual. Having revised the syllabus some, the theory lesson was a lot more engaging and interactive, with the ladies asking questions and speaking up despite the new environment.

 

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Gerald was great with the women, addressing their queries and making them laugh, creating a friendly atmosphere.

 

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Once we got the classroom must-do out of the way, we sent the ladies for the mandatory safety briefing by Kartright Speedway.

 

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Something new for the class: Gerald led each group out for an orientation lap, where he showed them the right racing line so that they could follow it later. This also bought time for the ladies to warm up to the karts and also to know the track.

 

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After two laps, Gerald came back in so that they could go off with their practice.

 

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Cheryl Yeo was fastest in practice for her group, with Yeo Pek Wei second fastest, followed by Aileen Tam and Jessica Koh.

 

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As I was watching the first group on their practice, I felt the sudden urge to get behind the wheel of the kart and get onto the track as well.

 

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Believe me not, I’ve only karted on the Kartright track once, although I’ve been there at least a few hundred thousand million times.

 

So when the second group was getting ready to line up behind Gerald to go out for their orientation lap, I jumped into a kart and got in line too!

 

I couldn’t explain the joy that filled me up when I rushed down the straights and cut the corners in the female-only environment that was created just for Ladies’ Night.

 

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Omg I was fastest in practice – and this made me want to kart even more – followed by Joana Chew, Doreen Lee and Umi Sapuan.

 

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Group 1 went out for qualifying next and their driving was a lot more aggressive. Cheryl Yeo was quickest again, clocking 51.436 seconds in her best lap! Aileen and Pek Wei were next fastest, with timings in the sub-56 seconds.

 

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The thrill of overtaking and the exhilaration from speed was too much to resist and after the first group completed qualifying, I joined the second group for their qualifying session as well.

 

It is so true that in racing, it’s not always about clocking the fastest time but it’s about knowing how to deal with traffic.

 

We all have that ideal racing line to follow and we should try to stick to it as much as possible, but in racing, circumstances change all the time and a good driver is one who can adapt to the varying situations quickly.

 

For example, you want to make an overtaking move in the corner so you out-brake the person and dive into the corner quicker to take the lead, instead of braking where you usually would.

 

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I got addicted to overtaking and kept wanting to go faster so I can ‘hunt’ people down to overtake them. I clocked the fastest time in qualifying in my group, yay!

 

Doreen and Umi were next fastest, showing consistent timings. Rochelle Chow was late and missed practice, but yet qualified fourth in her group and made it to the overall top 10 for the final.

 

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The final 15-lap race was only for the overall top 10 timings of the entire class, and honestly I felt like taking part in it. However, if I were to go for that race, that would mean depriving someone of the place and that wouldn’t be nice.

 

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Anyway I wanted to watch the girls so I can spot potential talents for the all-female team that I’m entering in the OCBC Corporate Karting Challenge. The team is called CTMC2! Racing Angels and the audition will be held on 28th April, free for all who have attended Ladies’ Night @Kartright before.

 

The race saw some exciting moments, especially at Turn 2 shortly after the start when Rochelle spun, causing some of them to spin as well. That’s racing – it’s about luck and knowing how to react fast in situations on the track.

 

Pole-sitter Cheryl lost her advantage and it was Pek Wei and Umi who were battling each other for the lead. Finally Pek Wei managed to edge Umi out and pull away to finish 25.825 seconds ahead. Rounding up the podium was Joana in third place.

 

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At debrief, the results were announced and the top three winners stood up to talk more about themselves. Winner Pek Wei is only 12 years old (going on to 13 this year) and have been karting for two years, with her brother already involved in kart racing. Wow, this girl should continue karting and who knows what will happen next?

 

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Umi is a mother of three or four I think, and has taken them karting on holidays, but this woman is very smooth in her racing despite not having gone karting properly.

 

Third-placed Joana has tried karting on holidays too, but really, if you have seen the class kart that night, you wouldn’t believe 75 per cent of them have never tried karting before.

 

The rest of the results are here:

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Great, great night! I hope to see new friendships formed and current girlfriend-ships strengthened from Ladies’ Night @Kartright. Already Jessica is asking me to join her for other adventurous activities! That’s the way, to form a community that bonds both on and off the track.

 

The next Ladies’ Night @Kartright is happening on 21st April, the eve of Good Friday. Join us if you can! Once you’ve become part of the Ladies’ Night @Kartright alumni, you are welcome to try out for my team on 28

 

To more racing adventures ahead…

 

For more photos, view my Facebook album here

Cheryl Tay

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Singapore’s only female full-time motoring and motorsports photojournalist. Independent automotive consultant and prominent local motorsports personality Cheryl Tay is uniquely passionate about all things cars and motorsports. She also has a strong passion to share her interest and knowledge, hence having a dream to become the ‘Oprah Winfrey of cars and motorsports’ and create a multimedia platform for her sharing. - A female in a male-dominated world, Cheryl Tay is Singapore’s only female full-time motoring journalist and motorsports blogger and she regularly writes for prominent titles in Singapore, Asia and internationally. (See full list of titles that Cheryl Tay writes for here.)

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