Toronto, Ontario – We all know there are thousands of videos shot every day for all kinds of reasons. But this one was done with a very specific goal in mind. And the
reactions to this clip have been overwhelming!
Last Spring, ST Racing’s Samantha Tan and her father were featured in a video clip called “BAD‐A** Asian Female Driver!”. The video was shot at the Thermal Club track in California and produced with the support and assistance of the BMW Racing School.
On September 17, the video was released on NEXTSHARK, the largest Asian American news site in the United States (over 3 million followers), and viewed simultaneously on Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. (see links below). In just a few weeks, over 350K views were recorded with messages pouring in from young girls all over the world.
It is a well‐known fact that one of Samantha Tan’s goals in life is to help children, and be an example for all the young girls in the world, and inspire them to take their place and be who they want to be.
Tan was humbled by the touching messages that kept coming in.
“The love and comments I received was overwhelming” she said. “I got so many messages on Instagram from all over the world ‐ places like Japan, Singapore, and Italy. It was surreal. People were extremely supportive and told me how inspiring the video was to them. Some said they got more motivated to get out on the track or to get into racing, while others said things like “You’re my hero”, “This is awesome, get out there and kick some a**”, or “Keep shining on”.
“However, the messages that made the most impact to me personally, were the ones I received about Asian and female representation” added Tan. “One girl messaged me saying, “You’re very inspiring to me because you’re a woman in the racing field and you’re Asian, so am I! I want to show the world that women could play as hard as the men, and we aren’t bad drivers, especially Asian women. How can I start breaking stereotypes with you?”
The Canadian driver had no idea the impact of this video would be so huge. “When I first read this” said Tan, “I actually did tear up because it was just so empowering to see that my story impacted someone and made them more motivated to make the world a better place. I believe it is so incredibly important to reject these established, preconceived ideas because they don’t define who you are or what you can achieve. Altogether, the fact that this video inspired people to go out and pursue their own goals, and made them feel more comfortable with their own identity, is all I could ever really ask for.”
Samantha Tan has been racing in the Pirelli World Challenge Series for four years. It hasn’t always been easy for the 21‐year old Canadian to make her place in racing. She had to deal with some hate mail and negative comments on social media about being Asian, about her driving, but she never gave up. She kept her head up high, focused on what she needed to do to become a good driver, and remained professional at all times.
Aside from racing full time, Tan is a full‐time student at University of California ‐ Irvine, majoring in Economics and Philosophy, and minoring in Humanities and Law. She also plays piano and draws when she has a spare moment.
ST Racing Team Principal, Kenneth Tan talks about the video, and his daughter’s courage. “I guess you could say, Sam inherited her mother’s eye‐hand coordination and my passion for cars and speed. I knew from the start it would not be easy for her to break into the world of car racing and be respected and accepted as one of the boys. But she has always been strong and determined, and she did it. I am so proud of my daughter and I know many dads who know us can relate. I see so many positive responses sent by younger girls who look up to her and I am so very proud and happy to see that she is making a difference for them. I hope to see many more girls in car racing in the future.”
“Filming this video was a lot of work, but also a lot of fun for both of us” added Mr. Tan. “I think we were successful is spreading the word out there to go after your dreams. I would like to thank Thirsty Tiger Television and the whole crew for making this happen.”
The attention this video has attracted and the wonderful influence Samantha Tan is having on all the young girls out there is exactly what the video was meant to do. Mission accomplished!