Determination is the key to success, but doing what you love is of great factor for the (young) racing car driver turned pilot, Sean Kieran Velasco. From a child who simply enjoyed playing racing games on PlayStation, Sean’s career has soared and accelerated all at once in auto racing and flying.
Anyone who said following your bliss or doing what you love is a terrible idea does not know Airworks yet. What Sean thought was a career detour only led him to another feat. He was in the driver’s seat even when he’s making his way to the cockpit as a flight school student. He had the chance to do what he loves and participate in various racing tournaments where he became the Three-Time Vios Cup Champion and won three second place, Motul Slingshot awards and adrenaline rush award for the same tournament. Other awards he nabbed that would surely make you wow were Overall Rookie of the Year in the National Karting Series in the Philippines and several awards in karting from 2009 to 2014.
Find out more about Sean Kieran Velasco and how he made us all Cebuanos proud in our short interview.
How old were you when you first found a love for racing and what memory stands out from it?
I found love for racing as a young child having matchboxes and hot wheels and other remote controlled cars. Having racing games on the PlayStation and staying up all night just to finish a 24 race challenge. I actually experienced my first leg cramp from that 24 hour challenge because I was squatting on the floor playing video game all day.
What is the most challenging part about car racing?
I think the most challenging part about car racing would be consistency. Being fast is good for qualifying but consistency is the key to race.
What was your proudest victory? And what did you gain from it?
My proudest victory would have to be the recent race in the Vios Cup last September 16, 2017. There are two races in a day. I started 4th place in race 1 and got to climb to 1st place but eventually got disqualified for having an iPhone in my pocket as it is in the rules that we are not allowed to carry any communication device even when it is not being used. Due to my disqualification from the first place, I was pretty much frustrated but I did feel like fighting my way up.
In race 2, I had to start in last place in the rain with low visibility, due to unsafe conditions we were only given seven laps out of the 12 laps we were originally supposed to run. I then had to overtake as much cars as possible, in the first lap I had already taken six cars and two cars each lap onwards until the 5th lap out of the 7th I was able to snatch 1stplace with two laps to go with mixed emotions inside the car as I could not believe I was able to reach my current position, but I kept my head down until the checkered flag and took the victory and Toyota Team Cebu instantly creating a motorsports history as we finished 1-2-3 in the same category. That was the best victory so far as I started last and ended up in first place IN THE RAIN. I gained respect that my disqualification in the first round was not due to cheating and my win was not a fluke.
Can you tell us more about the VIOS cup and the recent racing you won?
The Vios Cup is a series wherein all cars are the same with no modifications allowed. The Vios Cup is the most hyped up racing in the Philippines as it has celebrities driving in the Vios Cup and over 72 drivers are competing.
What made you decide to pursue Aviation and become a pilot?
I wanted to pursue aviation because it is a dream to be a part of that community and to learn how to fly as well. I want to be a pilot because I want to go to different places, meeting different people and loving something I would have to do as a job.
How do you manuever things, both your racing career and flying school?
In Airworks Aviation Academy, their advertisement clearly says that a student can come in even though they have jobs or are committed to other things like racing or going to college. With Airworks Aviation Academy, I can balance my racing with flying as they allow me to fly when I am available.
What advise can you give to individuals who also want to pursue their dreams of flying and enjoying their hobby at the same time (like racing or sports)?
I believe that anyone can be a pilot. A person does not need to be born with such talents to fly an aircraft; I believe that it can be easily learned even without sacrificing so much time on it and enjoying life and other hobbies.