Verena returns to Rally America and the TrueCar Racing Women Empowered Initiative in 2013 with her first National Championship under her belt. Last season, she won the Rally America B-Spec Series National Championship, and along with her teammate, Leanne Junilla, became the first all-female team to win a Rally America Championship.
Introduced to racing while modeling for Toyo Tires, Verena, at the suggestion of Indy Car legend Bobby Unser Jr., began stunt driving in 2002. While at stunt driving school, she also attended the Frank Hawley Drag Racing School, where she ran a 9.46 second quarter-mile at 144 mph and earned her Pro Competition Drag Racing License and the moniker of fastest Asian-American female in the U.S. In 2005 she began drifting while training in 300 HP Roush Mustangs and competing in the Formula Drift series. While competing in Formula D, Verena was the top-female drifter in North America. She also competed in the Redline Time Attack series where she became the first female Champion.
In 2011, Verena started training with North American rally guru, Tim O’Neil, at the Team O’Neil Rally School. She competed with them in the 2012 Rally America Series and will return with the Team again this season.
Verena has hosted and starred in automotive TV shows, and also appeared in the blockbuster movies “ The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift” and “Rush Hour 2.”
Series: Rally America
Team: Team O’Neil
Car and Number: #335 2011 Ford Fiesta
Hometown: Pearl City, Hawaii
Birthday: November 2
Resides: Littleton, New Hampshire
Racing Goal: Win a Rally Championship and a gold medal at the Summer X-Games
Fitness: Gym, karate, pilates, and kettlebells
Hobbies: Going to the beach or any outdoor adventure, movies, reading
Sponsors: TrueCar, Virgin, Team O’Neil, Tokidoki