Attributing her exotic looks to her Filipino and German descent, the popular Melyssa Grace from the U.S. is not just a pretty face but also a mean drifter behind the wheel. With experience in car shows such as being crowned Miss Formula Drift 2010 and Miss Hot Import Nights San Mateo 2007, she will be making her maiden trip to Singapore for Super Import Nights 2012.
Q: Tell us more about yourself.
A: I'm 28 years old this year and I'm a model, as well as a drifter. Born in Oakland, California, I grew up in Ewa Beach, Hawaii.
Q: When did you start modeling?
A: I have always dreamt of modeling since I was a little girl, often posing for my mother's camera and walking like a model. Growing up in Hawaii, I had opportunities to dance (hula, tap, jazz and ballet) and compete in beauty pageants. I started modeling since the age of 14, so that makes it about 14 years of experience!
Q: What are some of the challenges in your job as a model?
A: Dealing with the jetlag when I travel for overseas assignments, especially to places such as the Philippines and Indonesia. Other than that, there aren't really many challenges at all. It's so fun and I love my job!
Q: Did you say you are a drifter?
A: Yes! When I worked at Formula Drift, interviewing all the drivers and all that, I was influenced by the whole drifting scene and I loved being around the cars. I decided to get my own car and learn how to drift! I have been practising hard and I will be taking part in a pro-am drift competition in June. One of my goals for drifting is to be a star in my own drifting movie one day or work as a professional stunt car driver in Hollywood movies and television shows.
Q: Any favourite drifters?
A: Daijiro Yoshihara the Formula Drift 2011 champion because he kindly gave me very good advice while I was practising; Ken Gushi because he came to help me fix my car when I had a problem with it and I could continue practising; and Daigo Saito the Formula Drift Asia 2011 and D1GP 2008 champion because he is a rookie in Formula Drift USA this year but is kicking everyone's butt!
Q: They are all Japanese I realised! Anyway, being in this line you'll have to dress rather sexily and you are surrounded by males often, how does the boyfriend deal with this?
A: He isn't bothered and in fact is more proud. He is a very confident man and this is not an issue to him at all. He smiles and laughs when other guys look at me, and doesn't get jealous or upset.
Q: So we will be seeing you in Singapore at Super Import Nights. Are you excited?
A: Yes, this is my first time in Singapore. I've never had a reason to go to Singapore but now I have and I think I will really enjoy it.
Name: Melyssa Grace
Location: San Diego, California
Weight: 125 lbs
Vital Stats: 36-25-36
Passionate about cars and motorsports, Cheryl Tay is a familiar face in prominent local, regional as well as international automotive titles. More of her at www.cheryl-tay.com.