Female racer to make her debut with top team at Chinese GP

PETALING JAYA: There will be Malaysian interest in the Formula One Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai this weekend as young female talent Natasha Seatter has secured a race seat with reigning Porsche Carrera Cup Asia champions PICC Team StarChase.

Regular team driver Alexandre Imperatori is contesting in the Silverstone round of the FIA World Endurance Championship in preparation for his debut in the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans in June.

Hence, Natasha was offered the opportunity to make her debut with a championship-winning team.

The 20-year-old Natasha has been dubbed ‘Asia’s fastest female formula driver’ and most recently won the Formula Gulf 1000 Cham-pionships at the Dubai Autodrome last month.

She began her career in kart prix and went on to win a scholarship with the Petronas Formula Xperience in 2009.

The following season she joined Formula BMW Pacific with the Petronas Mofaz Racing Team, contesting a second season with the renamed Formula JK Series in 2011.

In March, Natasha made her first foray into GT competition, contesting the Malaysian Super Series race in support of the Malaysian Formula One Grand Prix – where she raised eyebrows after beating a number of seasoned sportscar campaigners.

Natasha is looking forward to her debut with the PICC Team StarChase.

“The last two weeks have been very busy training for my first drive in the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia,” she said. “The Porsche 911 GT3 Cup is a powerful car with excellent braking and immense grip out of the corners.

“It’s a real pleasure to drive although it handles quite differently from my Formula car and being almost double the weight.

“I owe a huge thanks to PICC Team StarChase for their confidence in my ability to drive for them at the Shanghai round.”

Originally scheduled as round 2 of the championship, a second race has been added to the Shanghai weekend, giving PICC Team StarChase and newcomer Seatter two opportunities to compete at China’s most high-profile and prestigious motorsport weekend.