Lyubov Andreyeva – Paddock magazine catches a young rising star, a very promising Kazakhstani Formula 3 racing driver.
Name: Lyubov Andreyeva
Date of birth: November 21, 1996
Place of birth: Almaty, Kazakhstan
Team: Kazakhstan Motorsport Team
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What was your very first experience of motor racing?
I was watching Formula 1 and Moto GP championships on TV every time they were on. I was a huge fan of Michael Schumacher and Valentino Rossi and fell in love with number 46. Like most of the drivers in Formula series, I started my racing career in karting when I was about eight. Unlike other little girls, I was playing with cars instead of dolls ever since anyone can remember. I started using number 46 during my karting career and I continue to use it in my Formula career today.
How did you finance your early years?
My father financed me completely when I started my career in karting. It is tremendously complicated to find sponsorship for motorsport in Kazakhstan. Our family wasn’t rich enough to support such an expensive hobby of mine so I think I’m a very lucky girl that I successfully continued to race until now. To be honest, I don’t understand how my mom and dad could have supported me until now – that’s a real mystery to me. Today, I have my own manager who tries hard to get finances for my racing career and helps me with everything else.
One of the biggest challenges for every driver is to attract sponsorship. What is your recipe for success?
Sponsorship, as petrol-blooded people probably know, is one of the most important factors in our sport. Like they say: “No money – no races, and no races mean no results, so if there are no results – there’s no money for races”. This is a pretty vicious circle, isn’t it? In our own marketing strategy, we try to use the fact that I’m a woman to the fullest. I’m the only girl on the grid almost at every race, except for the promotional girls, of course (smiling). My team members say that this and a few other factors make me very suitable for media and for our fan base as well. I think that if my manager continues to creatively use all of my advantages for a few more years, it could bring me to a place where I could be very close to getting into Formula 1. It was always my dream to be a professional F1 racer, later it turned into my most important goal and we will really try to do the absolute maximum to get there.
How do you deal with the competition on the track?
I learned that if you want to be the fastest on the track, you should understand one very important thing. Obviously, great physical education will undoubtedly be useful for your results. However, I always try to focus on psychology. Many drivers make the same mistake of always thinking too much about other racers. You have to be aware of the situation, of course, but I try to concentrate on myself and it always works out very well for me. However, it’s very difficult to get used to a new car, and that takes a lot of the concentration away from you because you’re always working with both yourself and the machine you’re sitting in. I do a lot of cardio and some special physical exercises, but the car is the best gym there is.
What are your most important career highlights?
In karting, I was a Champion of Kazakhstan 4 times. It was a great pleasure and honour when the CIK-FIA & Women in Motorsport Commission chose me as the Young & Talented Driver. I finished sixth in the Open Championship of Tatarstan of Formula 3 (Russia). As for the future, I have two contract offers in the Formula 4 (ADAC in Germany) and Asian Cup Series (in Malaysia) for the 2015 season.