Source: Oriental Daily – Writen by 郑宇晴
There are very few women who like racing, and professional female racing drivers are rare in this field. Although women are naturally weaker than men physically, it does not mean that women are weak. Local professional female racing driver Leona Chin (also known as “利念娜”) became the first woman to win the championship in the local Malaysian Championship Series (MCS) after winning several championships at the domestic racing circuit last year.
“I have always wanted to prove to everyone that women can race cars, and we are no less than men.” Since her debut, Leona has been proving women and breaking the male-dominated stereotype in the racing industry. Last year, she finally did it! When mentioning this incident, Chin Lyweoi said with a smile that she never thought about winning the championship. This is the biggest gain from her continuous practice in the past two years.
In 2021, local racing events include the Malaysian Championship Series (MCS), the Malaysian Speed Festival (MSF), and the Sepang 1000km Enduro. Chin Lyweoi won the overall championship with the team in the MCS and Sepang 1000 km endurance race respectively and won the category in MSF. Recalling the scene at that time, she bluntly said that perhaps it was because of her lack of fame. In endurance races, many drivers had already been recruited as factory team members, but she still had not found a team willing to let her join on the day of the event. “I thought I wouldn’t be able to participate this time, and no one wanted me, but I didn’t expect to find a team willing to let me join in the end.” She originally knew the drivers of the team, but she didn’t have a deep friendship, and there was no team tactic understanding. Therefore, when participating in the competition, it is only with the mentality of being determined to participate. “We are just an ordinary team, unlike the factory team with huge funds and team support.”
她解释，马来西亚锦标赛系列中分别有不同的赛事，耐力赛便是其中之一。耐力赛，顾名思义斗的就是耐力，需要在最短时间内完成181圈，而每位车手最多能只能上场1小时15分钟，完成自己的任务后就换下一个队友上场，无限循环直至完成所有圈数。率先完成的原本是Wing Hin Motorsport的丰田Yaris L，可惜最终因违规而被退至全场第三名，由陈莉慧所属的独立车队成为冠军。经纪人从旁补充：“当时我们的目标是季军，觉得能拿季军也已经很了不起，没想到还能拿下冠军。这也是本地汽车耐力赛上第一次有独立车队夺下冠军。”
She explained that there are different events in the Malaysian Championship series, and endurance racing is one of them. Endurance races, as the name implies, are endurance races. It needs to complete 181 laps in the shortest time, and each driver can only play for 1 hour and 15 minutes at most. number. The Toyota Yaris L of Wing Hin Motorsport was the first to finish first, but unfortunately, it was eventually relegated to third place due to violation of regulations, and the independent team belonging to Chin Lyweoi became the champion. The manger added from the side: “At that time, our goal was third place. We thought it was great to win third place. I didn’t expect to win the championship. This is also the first time that an independent team has won the championship in a local car endurance race.”
从小喜欢运动 第一辆车成赛车敲门砖 Like sports since childhood, the first car became a stepping stone to racing
Chin Lyweoi has been fond of sports since she was a child. She was a state bowler in middle school. Later, under the influence of her male friends, she often went to go-kart to watch other people play drift after she got her driver’s license. At the age of 19, a friend took her to play drifting together. After experiencing the extreme stimulation of drifting, she silently told herself that she must learn this technique in the future. “Drift is very stylish! Unfortunately, there is no opportunity to try it.”
直到上学院的时候，因需要自己开车去上学，家里给了她一个预算，让她自己选一台车，她选择了二手的Nissan 180SX。“选这辆车主要也是因为它运动型的外表，没想到会成为我学漂移的车。”偶然的机遇下，她遇见一位漂移车手，对方认为她有这方面的潜能，询问她是否有兴趣学习漂移，于是开启了她加入赛车行列的契机。当时作为学院生的她没有多馀的钱作为学费，便以交换的方式为对方的公司提供电脑记录服务以及充当赛车活动的工作人员。“当时学漂移用的就是我的Nissan 180SX， 但因为漂移需要有一定的配件，所以将自动挡改为手动挡，也换了轮胎等零件。”
When she was in college, because she needed to drive to school by herself, her family gave her a budget and let her choose a car by herself. She chose a second-hand Nissan 180SX. “I chose this car mainly because of its sporty appearance. I didn’t expect it to be a car for me to learn to drift.” By chance, she met a drift driver who thought she had potential in this area and asked her if she had an interest in learning drift, so she opened the opportunity to join the ranks of racing. As an academy student at the time, she had no extra money for tuition, so in exchange, she provided computer admin services for the other company and worked as a staff member for racing events. “I used my Nissan 180SX to learn drifting at that time, but because drifting requires certain accessories, I changed the automatic transmission to manual transmission, and also changed the tires and other parts.”
After learning drifting skills for two years, Leona was not satisfied with the current situation, so she chose to learn more racing-related skills from other teams. In 2008, she joined the local female driver team and became the fastest female driver in the team at the Sepang race. “The team is a team under Red Bull, so it will provide drivers with coaches and vehicles for practice, which is of great help to my growth, and I also learned a lot of different racing techniques.”
There are many different races in motorsports, including Gymkhana, Rally, time attack, Endurance, and more, each requiring different techniques. Leona said with a smile that her favorite track races over the years were endurance races that required patience and strategies to win.
不介意亲友眼光 只要妈妈支持 I don’t mind the eyes of relatives and friends, as long as my mother supports
Traditional Chinese families generally hope that their children will become dragons and phoenixes and have a stable career, but Leona, who has a financial background, chooses to embark on the road of racing, which is not acceptable to ordinary parents. “Many people think that racing is dangerous, but racing is actually safer than other sports.” She explained that as long as you do enough training and safety measures on weekdays, fatal accidents will generally not happen. Compared with the chance of sudden death on the court, racing There are very few fatal cases on the field. “At least so far I have been in the industry, there have only been minor collisions, no serious injuries, but many injuries have been accidentally injured by myself in my daily life.”
每每赛前15分钟，她就需要开始做准备，先穿上三层由阻燃材质支撑的赛车服、阻燃赛车头套、手套、头盔、可调式赛车颈部安全装置（HANS Device）等，确保从头到脚都受到保护后，才能进入赛车里。她直言自己非常认真看待这些安全装置，每年只要推出新改良的头盔或其他装置，她都会“投资”下来，以确保自己能受到这些新科技的保护。陈莉慧举例，赛车场上出现意外时，车手容易因重力冲击而导致颈椎断裂，因此需要戴上可调式赛车颈部安全装置，才能确保头部不会在撞击后出现不可控的意外。“这些装置价格都很高，光是一个HANS Device就要价5000至6000令吉。只是为了个人安全，还是有必要投资在这些装置上。”赛车事故最容易发生火灾，因此车里会设置防滚架、灭火器等安全措施，而比赛前赛车手也需要进行事故演习，把握在7秒里离开车辆。“若是不达标就必须一直练习到达标为止。”
Every 15 minutes before the race, she needs to start preparing by putting on three layers of racing suits supported by flame-retardant materials, flame-retardant racing headgear, gloves, helmets, adjustable racing neck safety device (HANS Device), etc. to ensure that you can enter the car only after you are protected from head to toe. She bluntly said that she takes these safety devices very seriously, and every year whenever a new and improved helmet or other device is introduced, she will “invest” to ensure that she can be protected by these new technologies. Leona gave an example. In the event of an accident on the racing track, the driver is prone to rupture of the cervical vertebra due to the impact of the accident. Therefore, it is necessary to wear an adjustable racing neck safety device to ensure that the head will not have an uncontrollable accident after the impact. “These devices are expensive, just RM5,000 to RM6,000 for a HANS Device. Just for personal safety, it is necessary to invest in these devices.” Racing accidents are the most prone to fires, so a roll cage is installed in the car. , fire extinguishers and other safety measures, and the racers also need to conduct accident drills before the race and leave the vehicle within 7 seconds. “If you don’t reach the target, you must keep practicing until you reach the target.”
“In the past, my mother would also be worried because she was afraid that this sport was too dangerous, but she has accepted it now,” Leona said frankly that although her mother was more open-minded, she would inevitably worry about her personal safety in the early years, so she took her mother to the racing field. Watch her practice and play, and then explain the purpose of each safety measure and gadget, so mom can feel at ease. “Although other relatives will still have some complaints about my career, as long as my mother supports me, it will be enough.”
赛车所需体能比跑步更高 Racing requires more energy than running
“I need to do different exercises every day, control my diet, train my physical fitness, do simulated racing exercises, etc.” Racing cars give the impression that they are sitting here and driving, which is not called sports. In fact, racing requires more physical fitness than running or riding. The bikes are all high. Leona Chin has her own exclusive sports coach. She needs to complete the exercise according to the list every morning, build the muscles of the arms and calves, and make the muscles more powerful. “It’s hard to see the difference between men and women, they can, and so can I, but in a race before, I was just one point away from the champion (male), but when looking at the driver’s analytics data, it’s easy to see Seeing that the force I used was completely different from the force he used. I could only go to that extent when I tried my best to step on the brakes, but when others put all their strength on the brakes, they could go deeper.” She admitted that that time was the first time she felt the difference in strength between men and women, so she worked harder to exercise her muscles, hoping to get herself into a better state.
Furthermore, wearing a full racing suit feels heavy and sultry. In addition to the hot weather in Malaysia, the temperature in the cabin can easily rise to 50 degrees Celsius. It is like riding a bicycle in a sauna while wearing a full racing suit, which can easily lead to mental stress. Difficulty breathing. Therefore, in addition to doing cardio, racers also need to have mental training to ensure that the racer’s mental state is stable. “The most test of endurance racing is patience because there are many laps and a long time, which can easily make people nervous.” At this time, the coach plays an important role and maintains a dialogue with her during the competition. If he notices that she is emotionally stressed When the time comes, he will start to appease her and bring her back to peace. She laughed and said that occasionally when she was nervous on the field, she would also talk to herself and use her words to stabilize herself.
“I spent most of my time (2016 to 2019) abroad. After flying here and there, I actually didn’t have much time to practice. But after the MCO, I was locked at home and I had a lot of time to practice.” Before the epidemic, in addition to daily practice, she also often goes abroad to participate in competitions and performances and has a certain reputation in China. She bluntly said that every time she goes abroad to participate in the competition, she can see the different driving skills of overseas drivers and the differences in the track in each place, which is an eye-opener. However, a pandemic disrupted her overall plans, preventing her from participating in the GT World Challenge Championship in 2020 and the Macau Cup in 2021.
Therefore, during the epidemic, she could only practice racing simulation at home, team up with friends from racing drivers around the world to compete online, and focus on improving her racing skills. “This type of racing simulator was launched around 2013, and it is now considered very realistic. It can completely simulate the combination of specified car models, and can also simulate the world’s major racing tracks.” She bluntly said that the only difference from real racing is that, the virtual racing car has no gravity (G-Force) experience and cannot feel the force when the vehicle turns or rubs.
“Jeng Jeng Jeng大家好，我是赛车手Leona Chin陈莉慧。”两年来，各大赛事停办，亦或无法出国参赛，为了维持生计， 陈莉慧开始经营自己的社交平台，以轻松的方式介绍一些赛车或电竞相关产品。她笑言，目前需要维持生活，但也会继续努力寻找赞助商，资助她到海外参与各大比赛，继续征战赛车场。
“Hello, Jeng Jeng Jeng, I’m racing driver Leona Chin Lyweoi.” In the past two years, major events have been suspended, or it may not be possible to participate in overseas competitions. In order to make a living, Leona started to operate her own social platform to introduce some racing cars or cars in an easy way. Gaming-related products. She said with a smile that she currently needs to maintain a living, but she will continue to work hard to find sponsors to help her participate in major competitions overseas and continue to compete in the racing circuit.