Claire Jedrek is unforgettable.
She's tall, sexy, beautiful and a bonafide daredevil. She is Singapore’s only female race car driver recently winning her first podium placing of 2nd at the 2015 Malaysian F1 support race & awarded by the Singapore Motor Sport Association for Outstanding Achievement (Car).
This F1 weekend as the world drools over the fast cars and the men in them, VANILLA LUXURY sits down with Claire Jedrek - a woman in a man's world to find out more about what it takes and why there aren't more women in racing.
Vanilla Luxury: Why did you get into racing?
Claire Jedrek: It was a personality driven decision. I've always taken part in sports that would challenge me and push my physical boundaries and this time it was to push my mental capabilities in an area unknown to me.
Vanilla Luxury: What do you love about it?
Claire Jedrek: It is a sport that is continuously moving forward, you don't have time to dwell on any negative thought processes. It keeps me on my toes and the number of moves to get past the finish line is infinite - you have to be completely emotionless and ego less and have the want to learn with open ears and heart.
Vanilla Luxury: What do you like least?
Claire Jedrek: I don't like that we don't have a circuit in singapore and that my family and friend can't always come and support me when and as they like.
Vanilla Luxury: Who is your favorite racer?
Claire Jedrek: I have 3 that I respect , Lewis Hamilton as an entire package , my team boss who can get into most cars and is able to drive on the get go and my husband who drives in one of the hardest cars and toughest race series the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia.
Vanilla Luxury: What is coming up next for you?
Claire Jedrek: Well I still have 2 race left the end of this year, and this F1 weekend is a really busy period for me and my husband. I am still a host and there a number of events coming up where eI will be able to interview live my favourite drivers. I will also be commentating the Carrera Cup Asia at the Singapore F1 this year, where my husband will be racing the Singapore GP for the 7th time.
Vanilla Luxury: Tell us about your training routine?
Claire Jedrek: I try to train 5 days a week and swap between cycling, running, swimming, HIIT workouts and I throw in some Golf. I have a love hate with cardio ,so cycling and swimming make it easier on wear and tear.
Vanilla Luxury: What is your dream car?
Claire Jedrek: Thats a tough one. I'd love a RUF or RWB modified Porsche . They look sexy as hell and are a sight hard to let go of!
Vanilla Luxury: Tell us about the most exciting race yet?
Claire Jedrek: It has to be the 2015 season , my first race I stood on the podium for the first time in 2nd place at the Malaysian Formula One support race.
I won't forget that moment driving back into the pits with my team support shared. It was a milestone for me.
Vanilla Luxury: Why, in your opinion, are there no female F1 drivers? What can be done to change this?
Claire Jedrek: Simply out, there are none full time female F1 drivers that are good enough. Women can drive all other series but when it comes to the F1 it is a whole different ball game in terms of skill set and physical capability. I'm not saying that there can't be but the wait is real. You have to be able to have the financial backing on top of that if you aren't a top driver. You can pay your way there but your pockets need to be very deep.
Vanilla Luxury: You are often described as a female race-car driver. Why can’t you simply be race-car driver? Would you say this conscious gendering is a part of the problem?
Claire Jedrek: Good question, I am a driver first and female second. I think marketing helps in this aspect for the gender game. There are many drivers in Singapore that are male but only one of me so I can play that card. I don't differentiate myself though in terms of presentation, I'm not decked out in colours associated with females. I try to keep my marketing to not point out that I am female. I think my name says it. A the end of the day , if you want to play the crying game that "oh I'm female" then you will have to take the heat . All I know is that when the visor comes down, everyone is competitive on that circuit and we all have the same goals.
Vanilla Luxury: What is the difference between a male driver and a female driver? For example, would you say the former are more aggressive?
Claire Jedrek: Well I think interest wise it would be fair to say that generally guys have more interest in cars and for Asia at least the guys like to watch racing and hence participate. It is about exposure and as a female I was lucky enough to be able to be exposed constantly to racing so its just part of my life and household. I think on the circuit it comes down to each person, how much time they have dedicated to their sport, focus to hone their skill. It's seat time and really the best drivers are ones that have a lot of seat time, who have good engineers to read their data, a good team , manager and mechanics. Racing really isn't a sport that is aggressive, its more of the science of driving and its about precision and pace overall.