Samantha Tan (right) with her ST Racing team-mate, Aurora Straus
Samantha Tan is a Canadian driver who races in the Pirelli World Challenge in the USA. She has made her way through the Touring classes to the GTS class.
She raced in the Canadian Touring Car Championship in 2014. Her car was a Mini Cooper, and she was fifth in the Touring class, and ninth overall. Her best finish was fourth, at Mirabel, and she was usually in the top ten. This was quite remarkable, given that she was only 17 years old, and in her first full season of motorsport.
Previously, she had only done a little NASA stock car racing in 2014, with some success. She had been interested in cars from a very early age and was one of the youngest people ever to take part in the Ferrari Driving Experience at Mont Tremblant.
In 2015, she raced in the Pirelli World Challenge for the first time. She was driving a Kia Forte Koup run by Kinetic Motorsport. Despite a bumpy start at Circuit of the Americas, where she did not finish any of her three races, she had a decent season, with fourth spots at Mosport and Miller. She was sixth in the championship.
Mid-season, she also found time for some rounds of the CTCC, in a Mini, scoring one third place at Toronto from three starts.
Most of 2016 was spent in the Pirelli World Challenge, where she drove a Honda Civic in the TCA class. She was sixth in the class championship, with a best finish of sixth and a consistent finishing record. Her form was slightly better in the early part of the season.
Late in the season, she made two guest appearances in the CTCC, and was fifth and seventh at Bowmanville.
A third season in the World Challenge in 2017, driving a BMW, proved difficult. Her best finishes were two fourteenth places at Circuit of the Americas and she was 29th overall. This was her first year in the TC class and was a step-up in power. TCA is a lower horsepower, “limited preparation” class, while TC allows cars up to TCR spec to compete.
In 2018, she decided to remain with ST Racing, her team from 2017. She drove a BMW M4 in the GTS class of the World Challenge with Nick Wittmer. They were fifth and third in the first two races at Circuit of the Americas, their best results of the year. Samantha was 16th in the championship.
(Image copyright Sean Krinik)