Archive for the ‘Car Entries’ Category

Authentically Drifting Pretty

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011

In 2003, I founded Drifting Pretty.  We had many moments in the media in our first few years, but lately we’ve been pretty private.  You don’t need to be trolling for magazine covers or features to go places in this world.  All you need to be is authentic.  I think that has been one of our secrets to success.  We’ve circled back to our main purpose over the past few years: to encourage and teach women about all things automotive-racing related.

Last weekend was a testament to this when ACT so graciously hosted the 2011 Drifting Pretty Field Trip.  The founder & President Dirk Starkensen, along with Daniel Starkensen & Chris Martin, opened up ACT’s doors on a Saturday afternoon and hosted a private clutch workshop & factory tour for Drifting Pretty.  They don’t get a magazine article or tv feature out of this, they did it simply because they believe in our purpose.  Now tell me if that isn’t authentic!?

We were honored to have this opportunity to come and learn at ACT.  We marketed this field trip to our students as a once-in-a-life time opportunity.  It was.  You can’t get this education from your traditional school.  From the bottom of my heart, again, thank you Dirk, Daniel and Chris.  Your support speaks volumes.

Here are some photos from the exciting field trip:


Part II of Best Worst Day at the track

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

As I said in my last entry, I have a lot to say about my return to the drift track! Time stops for no one. Benson is coming home late tonight, which gives me exactly 20 minutes to write this entry. Whew.

Two weeks ago I finally made it back to the drift track. Its been shamefully, almost 4 years since my eyes have been hit with tires and dirt. Between getting my life together after having Elise, raising a teenager, working on my accounting career, running Drifting Pretty, buying a new house and keeping the family happy…where is there time for drifting? There isn’t. But as my old buddy Yoshie preached a long time ago, “if its that important to you, you will find a way to find money and make time for driving.”

The biggest hurdle was getting my car to the track. I can’t drive it and I have no truck and trailer. I am very lucky to have friends that will bend over backwards to tow the Drift Queen to the track. Thank you Chris.  He lives near the track and made 2 trips back and forth from Lancaster to Temple City.  THAT is friendship.


Best Worst Day at the Track

Tuesday, June 7th, 2011

I made it to the track finally.  Big thank you to Chris Martin at ACT for trailering the driftqueens to the track <3.

I have a lot to say.  But for now, I will let my photos and videos speak (vids are at the bottom).




































Nadine Hsu 2011 – Drift Feature by Mondoy from Nadine Hsu on Vimeo.

Nadine Hsu is back! 2011 from Nadine Hsu on Vimeo.

Black & White Chicken

Sunday, May 22nd, 2011

Things have been so hectic lately while we’re prepping my car for the track (this coming Sat, 5/28).  The Hsu’s are running around town like Chickens with their heads cut off.  Not a lot of time to talk, but here are the highlights (I am never too busy to take a shot):


Benson named this stray “Gary Busey.”  He likes to come and visit our outdoor cat Vera Wang.  He is TORE up.

As we prepare for summer break, we’re touring preschools for Elise and college prep courses for Kristy.

Another  advantage I have over the guys…I shop at craft stores with hot duct tape!

my daughter Kristy helped design my new sticker scheme…its multi-functional design ensures my bumper doesn’t fall apart!

(taken with my iPhone) the DriftQueen runs for the 1st time, in…2 years.  She starts on the 1st try with no problems.

I’ll see you after the car’s brakes are bled!

When the ladies fix my car

Wednesday, May 4th, 2011

This past weekend, some of the Drifting Pretty ladies gathered in my garage to log more hours working on cars.  Just a few weeks ago the ladies were at Temple City Auto Repair installing new coilovers on Cathy’s S14 & learning how to use power tools!  This time, the guinea pig was my race car.  A brake system install & wheel re-facing were on the agenda.

Each of my students showed up right on time and ready to work.  With the increasing popularity of our twitter account, I tweeted the play-by-play of our tech day.  For you, here are the play-by-plays (taken with my iPhone):

10AM: we take an inventory of the Stop Tech big brake kit we’ll be installing, elect project managers and go over functions of each part


Show Stopper

Wednesday, April 27th, 2011

I’m a big Danity Kane fan.  The group was popular around the same time my Drifting career peaked.  I was enjoying life at the track and then these gals came out with this song about girls cruising in their candy ride, called “Show Stopper“.  Finally a song about ladies in THEIR sweet ride.  Now why am I even talking about this?  I was thinking of what to title this post…I’m writing about a baby who stole the show at Easter and my dusty race car that I am slowly shining back up–both are show stoppers right?  And then the song comes to mind and I have to listen to it!

The Baby Who Stole the Show
I had the opportunity to borrow a pro-level Canon lens over the weekend.  (a 35mm 1.4 L-series for you photogs).  I didn’t have any photoshoots setup for the weekend, that’s until Easter dinner started!  Our friends, Steve & Jenny (the same couple from the engagement photoshoot) were at Easter dinner.  They brought their adorable son.  The rest speaks for itself.  Here are some test shots with the show stopper:

Dusty Show Stopper
I’ve been hard at work doing accounting side jobs to fund the repair of my race car.  I sat there in the garage tonight, staring at my car, searching for one original piece of the car.  There isn’t any.  I started in 1997 and here it is, 14 years later, and I’m still NOT done with the car!  I’ve changed everything from the bulbs inside my gauge cluster, to the tail-lights (3 times) to the lugnuts, to the glass on my quarter panel, to the hinges on my door…wait the door has been changed too!  I can’t find much of anything “stock.”  What a show stopper my car was and still is.  I love that I could keep going 14 years later with just as much interest as I had before.  I’m going to be a senior citizen and still be tinkering with my show stopper!!!

I could write on and on and about my car, but that will be another time.  Perhaps in a book or screenplay (I’m not joking).  The ladies of Drifting Pretty will be working on the ol’ drift machine with me this weekend.  Its going to be a blast.

Cute Cars

Saturday, April 16th, 2011

My latest 2 photo projects: friends cars.  I’m a big automotive enthusiast and racer.  I’ll tell you about pretty shoes made in Italy then pause to gawk at a pretty car passing by.  Taking pictures of friends’ cars that happen to be in the right place at the right time is something I’ve encountered a couple times this past week.

Jesse's 1965 Shelby Cobra replica

Jesse’s car just happened to be hanging out at Temple City Auto Repair during the Drifting Pretty tech day workshop.  Its a new car built from the ground up.  Its new but not.  Hot car hello!!!!


Shant's 1974 BMW 2002

Shant, of my lunch bunch at work, seems to always get suckered into driving us to lunch spots in his BMW 2002.  I’ve never driven a car more difficult to drive in my life.  I love this car though, its a beaut!!!  On the roof of the parking structure at work during the last 5 minutes of our lunch break.


Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

Sad sight in my garage

Dear Diary,
I write you today to take note that the car revival starts tomorrow.  The pink dusty drift machine in the garage needs some attention and it starts tomorrow.

Week 1 To Do List:

Step 1 – Order a new battery! – Do this tomorrow

Step 2 – Order the rest of the parts for the ebrake upgrade – Do this by Friday

Step 3 – Open up StopTech brakes and make sure you have all the parts. – Do this by Monday

The start of my official “to do” list.  I’m drifting again in May.  I can’t tell you how much I’ve missed drifting.  My heart hurts…that’s how much.  Finally the days return where I can think about what’s for dinner while I’m kicking the clutch in 3rd gear.

The DP gals are coming to help set up my car next month.  This is so exciting!!!

Stay tuned.  Drift Queen Revival!!!!


4 Years Ago

Thursday, September 30th, 2010

4 years ago I married the man who completed me and turned my life into a dream come true.

Happy 4 year anniversary Benson

Our cars married each other too.  Happy Anniversary Cars 🙂


Monday, August 16th, 2010

Maybe I’ll just teach you guys Japanese every time I post!  Shiawase means happy in Japanese.

Nisei Week
This past weekend I skipped down to Little Tokyo in LA for the 70th Annual Nisei Week Festival.  If not for the fun booths and taiko…I go for the annual Import Showoff car show.  Every year for probably the last 6 years I’ve entered my car in the show (and took a trophy home) and set-up a Drifting Pretty booth.  This year was the first year I did neither.  It was nice to stroll along the aisles of show cars and get caught almost every 3 minutes catching up with old friends/mutual car lovers that I’ve known for the past 10 years.  I can’t believe its been that long since I started cool gal car thing.  I didn’t push the Drifting Pretty gals to attend…I didn’t need to…a few showed up and I happened to run into them at the show!   Embracing not just drifting, but anything in the auto enthusiast culture is A+ in my book.

Car shows are usually not my cup of tea, but the Nisei Week import showoff is the exception.  You’ll find a lot of entrants that only enter their cars once a year and show up with these nostalgic cars that aren’t necessarily the trend of the moment, but are near and dear to the hearts of the people who can appreciate that type of car.  Our friend even brought his 1986 Corolla there and displayed his car along side his teammates from his racing crew that has been no more for years…but circled back together just for this event.

We also strolled to Bowls who was having their grand re-opening at their new space right near Daikokuya in the heart of Jtown.  The sweet guy boutique offers cute accessories for Ruckuses (and even sells Ruckuses), men & women’s apparel and footwear. Its a hip boutique that makes you want to hang out and buy cool stuff all day.  The owner I met years ago of course through my drifting fame lol.  Its awesome to see friends succeed at something in addition to the car thing.  Cheers to Brandon!

Nisei Week Photo Gallery

The Next Food Network Star
Another blast from my drifting stardom past… Aarti.  I met her when she was a producer for a media piece that was done on Drifting Pretty back in 2003.  We’ve kept touch all these years and she started a food blog then cooking show on youtube…to now…winning her own show on the Food Network!

Her show will be about infusing Indian flavors in everyday foods.  Check out her interview here on LAist.  And more importantly, set your DVR to tape her new show Aarti Party at 12pm on Sundays starting this Sunday!!!