True Street Ignition Queens | 2020 APC Finalists
Updated: Jun 21
Words by Loli Azuelo | Founder
With our 2020 Automotive Photography Challenge now complete, and it's now up to our official panel of professional photographers, I'm so happy to reveal the 10 Very Inspirational Queens that have put their fears behind and stepped in front of the camera.
In no particular order, let's meet the women who represent their rides, themselves and in turn, women around the globe - and they should all be very proud. I know I am. After reading their stories, and living through their images, I know you will be too.
"I’ve been in the car community for about 6 years now. I’m all about empowerment and fun! So to be female in a mans 'hobby' is pretty special. We are changing the car community in unique ways. This image is empowerment."
Queen: Madison Benoit
Photographer Credit: Kate Cameron Photography
"Ever since I learnt what a car was, I was always fascinated about what made a car, a car. Learning in my Father's Holden Commodore and then eventually his Ford Fairmont Ghia - I was finally licensed to take on the road with the mighty Learner's Permit. Bring on my 18th birthday, I was finally on my Provisional 1 license and a happily owned my own car. Starting with a 1998 Honda Civic throughout the last year of high school and my 21st birthday, a 2004 BMW 318TI, then a year later 2004 Volkswagen Golf FSI, my automotive appreciation grew and grew... And grew some more. Those 3 cars started it for me. They may not have been the top of the line, or the fastest, but they laid the foundation of my knowledge and love for all things automotive. Another year and milestone had passed. I had a 2008 Volkswagen GTI. The first car I ever got professionally dyno tuned. Being an overly confident driver during midnight, I slipped downhill a mountain on rain drenched road. My car literally saved my life in the sacrifice of its own. Bring on a few months after my accident. My love for Subaru began. Starting off with a 2004 Subaru Liberty GT Premium, then 2008 Subaru Impreza RS and eventually a 1998 Subaru SF5 Forester and 2007 Subaru Impreza WRX, my love, patience and automotive understanding had levelled up to what it is today. Whether it be performance or its aesthetics, I want to be able to spread and share automotive inspiration with fellow enthusiasts.
This image is extra important to me as my mother had recently passed away. If anything it is symbolic of how my mother is finally free, flown to heaven and now always watching over me, making sure I always move forward..."
Photographer: Phonix Photography
"I first started going to car shows and meets with my husband. I had no idea it was even a thing, but the more I went the more I got to meet the most amazing people.
I've made so many awesome new friends!
I finally decided maybe I can change up my car and make her more like mine. So with my husband's help we have been changing my car to fit me.
Working together and being interested in the car scene with him has actually helped our marriage. We’ve bonded and we’ve talked. We hang out more and spend more time together. Even our 3 year old is so interested in cars! She loves working on them with her mommy and daddy. It’s the best family bonding I could have ever dreamed of.
This photo means so much to me because through this pandemic I’ve been working a lot more and a lot harder, so my husband finally decided let’s go do something for me.
I redid my hair, got all dresses up and we drove around finding awesome locations and started taking pictures and this one turned out to be one of my favorites.
Thank you so much for the opportunity to be apart of this amazing community.
Good luck to all the ladies!"
Photographer: Lawbreakers Broke Status
"I am very lucky to have a great daily car like I do. It handles everything I throw at it whether it is large bags of flour for work or loads of cosplay supplies for up coming conventions.
I am also thankful for the loving fiancee that has a very strong passion for her cars and her photography who is able to help me out when it comes to my car."
Photographer Credit: Phonix Photography
"I share the passion for automobiles for many years with my boyfriend.
This photo represents our way of life very well."
Photographer: Purple Silvia 14
"I have always grown up with a passion for cars, but it really started when I purchased my 2009 Subaru WRX (Rex). A car I always dreamt of owning but never really took the step to purchase until I found Rex. She was an online purchase, physically unseen. A rookie mistake that paid off, Thankfully!
My first purchase for Rex was an aftermarket head unit which I wired up myself (no plug and play, I like to be hands on and learn), which then followed closely by personalised plates and where she got named Rex. Wheels followed after this, taking a risk with 18x 8.5 +33, I ended up needing my guards rolled for fitment. Just recently I made an investment into getting her wrapped. What an experience that was. I actually don’t let anyone touch my car ( I do all servicing myself for this exact reason) but I left her in the hands of someone else for two days, a very stressful and emotional experience, but so worth every moment and tear she, I don’t think I’ve been so emotional over a car in my life! Fingerprint Signs and Josh aka “The wrap King” made the process as easy as they could. Even allowing me to assist stripping the car down to begin the process.
My love and passion for this car is obvious to every person I know and meet. SIQ has really been a great encouragement for me to get into the car scene and allows me to feel comfortable enough doing so, which shows in the photo shoot for this competition, I went in all nervous and lacking on the self-confidence front; but with a great photographer and Rex by my side I overcame this completely. Rex is what completes me and has given me the spark and confidence boost I have been missing. I’m hoping I can pass this passion and love onto my daughter and many other women who are too shy to get involved, because a passion for cars is like no other!"
Photographer: Kylie Hamilton Photography
"My journey began when i was a little girl. I was always into cars and playing with either my horses or my cars. I never had anyone in my family who was passionate about cars so where it came from, I'm unsure. I do however know that I love them. The mechanics, the motorsport, customising opportunities and of course the power, speed and looks.
ENVY. I've had since my L's and has been there through everything. I haven't had it easy in many ways but she has got me out of a lot of trouble. Calming me down when I go for a cruise, finding my peace within her, being mechanically reliable and helping me show everyone that I could have her. I was constantly told I couldn't pay her off with another loan I had been left with from an ex. I proved them wrong and she will forever be a part of my family, my inspiration and my love.
I am forever thankful for my love for cars. Recently returning to photography, it's how I found my soulmate Derek who owns Thirteen27 media specialising in automotive photography. I am blessed to be involved in his business with my photography skills, passion for cars and I finally get to model with cars (something I have always wanted). We work on our own cars together and are looking into a project car for us to develop and grow together as a couple and as mechanics."
Photographer: Thirteen27 Media
"This is my amazing ride. My 1959 FC Ute, Burnt Orange, also my daily driver. I purchased her locally from a guy in 2012. I hounded him every time I saw him.
One day at Maccas I said, “Are you ready to sell her to me yet” (this was about the 10th time over a few years).
He said "Yes". Fred had to pick me up off the floor.
I didn’t hackle the price; she was worth every cent.
Over the last 8 years I have done a bit of work on her. Driving down the road one day the wiring caught on fire, 50 years of people adding things under the dash, had to do a total rewire. Brakes (didn’t like stopping), new paint and upholstery, back done with Speedline, stereo, and most important in North Queensland, an Aircon and various other things that didn’t work. Lucky my husband has a few FC's and lots of parts that came in handy.
My favourite thing to do is park on the strand, sit under a tree and watch everyone stop and take photos and talk about my car. It’s very cool."
"Cars have always played a massive part of my journey through life. What started out as a genuine curiosity definitely became more of an obsession as the years went on. I learnt to drive in a V8 Commodore and it's quite possible that's where the speed bug kicked in for me. This is my "Lil CB" featuring a 410 small block Chev - she's been my daily driver, my hubby's drag racing car, and now she's the cruiser we take out to enjoy together.
In one way or another, a car's speed, sound and smell all come together to form an historical mental calendar for me. Recalling the experience by the sound, sight or smell of the fuel burning, the tyres smoking or the roar of the engine as it flies by. My love of all things automotive has allowed me to embark on photographing drag racing, burnout meets and my true love and biggest goal - photographing for an Australian car magazine.
On normal life time schedule - you'll find me out at the track cheering on the burnout crews and photographing them as they let 'em rip; or the drag racers as they lurch off the line, capturing their racing of the day. It's been one hell of a ride so far, one fueled with purpose and contentment and I've got no intention of stopping any time soon.
Cars really are my life. And I live it to the fullest. Wouldn't have it any other way."
Photographer: Kylie Hamilton Photography
"Since purchasing this last Australian made Falcon in 2016, I have experienced the most amazing opportunities!! I have gone from being a lonely 'tag along' driver at other local car meets and cruises - to having the privilege of being invited to be the admin and organiser of two amazing car groups. My car has not only taken me places in a physical sense, but the people and especially the lady drivers I have met along the way has been truly inspirational!!
My Falcon is my daily driver so the drive to and from work is certainly the best times of the day. However, that is not enough driving for me...I have a need for speed and doing that legally is extremely difficult so I took my car down the drag strip for the first time last year and waiting for the events to start up again this year. My car has undergone some upgrades since that first run down the strip and cannot wait to test myself and better my time!!
I still can't believe that my Falcon is now recognised across Australia on the SiQ page and that I have made so many new friends across this National group. Our North Qld group is growing every year and we love our Cars and Coffee catchups. Thanks ladies for coming up with your amazing rides!! I also juggle being an admin and organiser of a North Qld Ford group and that is a challenge being a female in a male dominated space. But the Ford blokes have been amazing and respectful to my ability to know my car and be able to hold a car conversation with them!! So here's to many driving years ahead and to all the older ladies who inspire me!!"
Photographer: Chele Bero Images
These 10 submissions will now be judged by an official panel of professional photographers and the Top 7 will have a feature on Street Ignition Queens 2021 Women's Automotive Calendar and Winner's Lanyard distributed across the globe. Lady Driven Co, will then host the public vote on their Instagram to determine who will be crowned the Cover Queen of the Calendar.