Time flies, the MBA program has been over for almost a year, and I am fortunate to continue with my passion for motorsport and a dream job in one of the Formula One teams in Italy, working as a commercial analyst.
The automotive industry is historically a male-dominated industry with only a few women working in the motorsport sector, including Formula One. And motor racing is seen as a dangerous activity rather than a sport in Asia. There isn’t any motorsport community in my home country, and it is difficult for us to receive information about the sport as well as support in education. It seems really far away for most of the people in the Far East to get into the motorsport industry.
My first experience in motor racing was 10 years ago when I was still in university finishing my degree in sports communication and tourism. I had a chance to work in the Monaco GP. I was fascinated by this premium sport, with only 2 cars and 2 drivers in each team, which generated so much money and publicity, in a single weekend. Despite the challenges for a woman to get involved in motorsport, I am someone who never gives up. During the pandemic, I took the opportunity to improve myself and the MBA program enabled me to connect the dots on a path to my desired career with 10 years of work experience in the corporate world, I am thankful my skills are recognized in a brand new industry.
During the MBA program, I took advantage of the opportunity to speak to a couple of industry experts, including my mentor, Eugenio Sidoli (MD of Max Mara Fashion Group, ex Philip Morris board member) who helped me to understand Italian culture and how a woman can embrace challenges in a traditional business set-up, as well as Alex Hui (Team Principe of Nio 333 Formula E team) who inspired me in motorsport and shared with me his experience in managing a race team. Then I realized being a 30+ Asian woman could be my weakness but at the same time could also be my unique selling point.
A few months ago, I was connected to a Singapore based Youtuber to share my experience working in an F1 team and the journey I took to get into a motorsport career. The video was watched by thousands of fans, and I have since conducted an interview with the national newspaper in Hong Kong, with a readership of over a million, to talk about women in motorsport, inspiring millions of Hong Kong students to pursue their interests in the automotive industry. As the first Hong Kong woman working in Formula One, I have become a role model for many students who will be the engineers of the future, and I will continue to share my passion with many other Asian women and form a stronger community.
It was a big turning point in my life, from giving up a senior position in corporate business, taking the risk to come to Italy for the MBA program at the peak of the pandemic, living in a new country, learning about the new culture. Now, I am experiencing a fruitful return on my investment in my career and seeing a bright future ahead in Italy – a place I can now call home.