Words & snaps by Ben
April 12th marked the new season of one of Singapore's most resilient autocross/gymkhana event: the Grassroots Autotest!
Back after three successful rounds last year, the Grassroots Autotests are back to bring more motorsports madness to Singapore's shores.
While every round see some usual suspects lining up their cars on the start line, there is also a constant flow of newcomers.
Some join once to get better acquainted with their rides, while others get bitten by the motorsports bug and quickly become regulars too.
This round even saw the participation of Chloé, the first lady I have seen taking part in this series.
Driving her friend's MX-5, she showed quite a strong competitive spirit, as well as some very respectable skills, especially since this was her first motorsports experience!
She was very well received in the scene, and her presence here goes to show that ladies too can play in this male-dominated playground, and claim themselves a piece of the fame and fun!
Showing deep dedication to grow a competitive yet fun motorsports culture, the team of instructors from Drive Rite were there to marshal and give advice to the contestants who pitted their rides in the autocross and gymkhana arenas.
This round's track layout had more donuts than any of last year's designs, and most contestants referred to it as being a lot "tighter" than before, yet all of them said this with a grin on their faces. Overcoming the challenges against themselves, their cars and the track, are, after all, the reasons why we join motorsports events in the first place.
What I particularly like about the Grassroots events are not only the challenges faced by the drivers and their rides, but also the variety of machines taking part.
Lotus are now always present, and growing in numbers, and Toyota 86 and Subaru BRZ are starting to show some growing presence too!
But as much as these rides join the Autotest with technical advantages, I always enjoy seeing much more mundane giving them a run for their money, and even kicking them out of the competition.
Motorsports are, after all, not just about fast cars, they are first and foremost about fast drivers!
That said, the Grassroots Autotests events are not all about the competition, and simply participating will allow anyone to get better acquainted with their cars and discover the very welcoming motorsports scene we have in Singapore.
Modified cars are not a necessity to take part, and I encourage anyone curious about it to at least give it a try once, and experience the camaraderie, sportsmanship, and thrill of the Autotest events.
Who knows, you could grow addicted to it!
Enjoy more photos of the Grassroots Autotest 2015 Round 1!