In part one of this three-part series, we speak to Alex Dimano Brown who competes in the Junior category of the X30 Southeast Asia Championship.
Alex Dimano Brown has already been karting for 8 years, despite being only at the young age of 14. Racing with the 7 Racing team, Alex clinched first place at rounds 2, 3 and 5 of the X30 Southeast Asia championship, and was also the winner of the GoPro Fastest Lap Award. Amidst his busy schedule of karting and school, we catch him at the KF1 Karting Circuit for a quick interview.
1. Who, or what started you on karting?
I went for holiday in Phuket and visited a go-kart track with my dad who took me around on a two-seater kart. It was quite slow compared to the ones here, but I really enjoyed it and loved the speed even though my dad is quite a bad driver. I cried when we had to go, and really wanted to get my own (go-kart).
When we got back to Singapore, he bought me a secondhand kart. From then on I just practiced a lot at the old track in Jurong — I did a lot of hours and really enjoyed it.
2. Do you have someone that you look up to, or that inspires you?
Lewis Hamilton. Not only because he’s won a lot of championships, but also because he’s come from a humble background and not a rich family like most (current) F1 drivers. I also admire all the athletes who put in the hours to get where they are now, who have a strong dream and really follow it.
My dad’s always encouraged me, giving me positive feedback and inspirational messages while mum comes along for karting sessions.
3. How far would you like to go in karting or Motorsports? What are your your dreams and plans?
Of course the dream is F1, but I have to practice a lot to get there. I’ll put in the hours and everything to get to that stage. I think I’m doing pretty well to get there — right now I’m doing more European races, and my dream is also to represent Asia in a racing scene that is European-dominated.
4. As a karter we would imagine you like cars as well? Do you have any favourite make or model?
Right now my favourite car is a development model — it’s the tri-turbo McLaren MP4-12C by HyperCar Development. It’s got three turbos, 1200 horsepower, limited at 270mph and does 0-60 mph in 2.4secs — really cool. For production cars, it’ll have to be the Ferrari LaFerrari.
5. Any advice for other young karters who would like to begin the sport?
Have a strong goal and strive towards it, and a lot of practice — keep putting in the hours even when times are hard and you feel like giving up, and just keep persevering through it and just put in the laps and laps and laps.
6. What keeps you doing what you do? Is it really just an interest in karting?
I like the speed down the straights and stuff, and the challenge of going to Italy or France or Europe and having the challenge of wheel-to-wheel racing. It’s the strategy, the preparation; everything that goes toward it is really nice.
7. Are you interested in other sports apart from motorsports?
For fitness, yes — like cycling, running, and swimming — but just for fitness. Nothing compares to racing — the sound, the engines, everything.
8. Would you consider yourself a competitive person?
Yeah. If I want to race I’ve got to be competitive.