Singapore GP and Singapore Airlines raise $10,000 for Community Chest beneficiaries

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Cars on display at the starting grid near the F1 Pit Building for the Racing Hearts Charity Drive on Aug 26.

SINGAPORE - For about 10 minutes, the 14-year-old student sat in awe as the engine of the supercar roared.

Mikayla Lee, from the Association for persons with special needs (APSN) Katong School, was in the passenger seat of a Porsche GT 3, one of more than 100 vintage and supercars taking part in the first-ever Racing Hearts charity drive on Saturday (Aug 26).

The passengers included more than 100 Community Chest beneficiaries.

Describing the experience, Mikayla told The Straits Times: "It was fascinating. When the car went faster, it got very loud."

Her grandfather, who wanted to be known as Mr Lee, 65, said it was "Mikayla's lucky day to be driven in an expensive supercar".

The event, held at the F1 Pit Building, was organised by Singapore GP and Singapore Airlines to raise funds for Community Chest beneficiaries.

The guest-of-honour Ms Low Yen Ling, senior parliamentary secretary, Ministry of Trade and Industry, and Ministry of Education, presented a $10,000 cheque to the Community Chest on behalf of the organisers.

Mr Loi Win Yen, 46, said the event was the perfect prelude to the Singapore Grand Prix which will be held from Sept 15 - 17.

Mr Loi, a businessman and a member of the Porsche Club Singapore, said: "It's all about giving back to society. I was impressed when the Katong school boy who sat in my car said his dream car was a Lamborghini."

A tyre-screeching drift demonstration at the far end of the straight also pulled in the crowd.

One of the world's top drifter Kenshiro Gushi led the demo team consisting of Malaysia's Formula DRIFT Asia veterans Ivan Lau and Ee Yoong Cherng, as well as Singapore's Ng Sheng Nian.

Members of the public, who donated $10 each, also got to race go-karts on a mini circuit with the DJs from ONE FM91.3.

"It was fun and very competitive but after two of our fans, who were ahead of me, crashed, I made sure I drove behind everyone like I was the safety car driver," said ONE FM91.3 DJ Glenn Ong. "If it wasn't for that, I would've won."

Attendees also got a behind-the-scenes tour of the Marina Bay Street Circuit for a $5 donation.

For the first time, the tour featured a part of the Temasek Suite, an exclusive hospitality suite that hosts dignitaries during the race weekend.

A part of the paddock was also converted into a mini photo studio for families who paid $20 to have portraits taken of their children dressed up as a junior pilot and Singapore Airlines stewardess.

As the festivities continued into the night, Mr Frederick Seah, an advertising agency owner, was seen wiping down his 1969 racing green Morgan 4/4.

Mr Seah, 50, said: "I look forward to these types of events because it's not only for a worthy cause but it's one of the rare occasions that I get to drive my vintage car."

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