The Kia Gear Up event is a 4 days, 3 nights trip to Barcelona, Spain, that consists lots of fun and adventurous activities for the global ambassadors to experience. On my Day 1 MoVernie BLOG, I have shared to you my first day tour around the city of Barcelona. On Day 2 of my MoVernie BLOG below, it is where the “main event” happens. We get to wear our personalized Kia GearUp racing uniform and helmet to warm up our driving skills on a Go-Kart race track. Also, we got to test drive some Kia vehicles under various driving surface conditions to showcase Kia latest advanced technologies. Last but not least, we get to watch a rally car stunt show, demonstrated by the professional rally stunt drivers. We also get to drive the Rally Edition of the Kia Pro C’eed GT on the race track and at the end, sitting on the passenger side to watch how a professional driver zoom through the race track with speed and skills.
By sharing the photos and captions, I hope everyone can get a sense of what’s it like at the Kia Gear Up event and feel as if you are participating the fun activities with me :)
Day 2 Kia GearUp Event starting right now! As Kia Motors slogan states, “The Power to Surprise!
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Good morning! Rise & shine from Barcelona, Spain! Day 2 is the BIG day as we are getting ready to go to the Castelloli Circuit for some real driving lessons and educated training, as well as real race car driving and most importantly, test driving some of the Kia vehicles under different road surface conditions so we know how to self-defensive driving as well as knowing how to utilize some of the most advanced technologies Kia Motors have to offer to its customers. But first, let me grab a nice breakfast, coz I need some much needed energy!
I have a great sleep in my comfy bed staying at the 5-star Grand Central Barcelona hotel. And this buffet breakfast at Grand Central Barcelona is nicely done.
Once we hop on the coach bus, we got the paparazzi filming and taking pictures of us. As you know by now, I am very comfortable in front of the cameras because I am a TV Host for my own web-series show interviewing celebrities and athletes.
Before we get to Castelloli Circuit, let me take a selfie. Toronto Raptors represent! I know many of you know that everywhere I travel, I always wear Raptors gear to represent my team and my beloved country. I have been doing this for over 10 years now and will continue to do so.
After 45 minutes of bus ride, we have finally arrived at the Castelloli Circuit. As you can see, the Kia Motors production crew and other camera crew are getting ready to film and take more pictures of us. I love it! It’s a cool experience!
I am having another cool conversation with my buddy Silvio.
Kia Motors set up the air-balloon GearUp tunnel. This part of the track are being setup into 3 segments where we will be driving different Kia vehicles to test out its various advanced technologies as well as how to apply these technologies under different road conditions.
Lovely Kia GearUp Lounge with comfy umbrellas, comfy lounge chairs and tables.
These are some of the Kia vehicles that we will be able to test drive on the course setup by the hardworking Kia Motors staff.
Everyone is chilling inside the indoor lounge as well as beverages, light snack, video games section as well as foosball section.
Kia GearUp Event – May 13-16, Barcelona
But before we start test driving the Kia vehicles, we have to learn the safety first. We got a self-defense driving session with the instructor to ensure we are familiar with the circuit we are going to drive on as well as learning the driving safety during the entire Kia GearUp driving experience. This session is extremely helpful.
After the safety session, we go outside and one of the instructors is demonstrating to us the proper sitting and driving position when driving on the road. The Kia Soul is being used for the demonstration.
Another instructor is demonstrating to us where all the gears are being stored in the Kia vehicle. What amazes me is all the equipment needed to change a tire is thoughtfully being stored and provided by Kia Motors in every vehicle. That’s very thoughtful thinking. This instructor is showing us how to change a tire on this Kia Soul.
After the demonstrations, we walk back into the lounge and there is a surprise! As Kia Motors’ slogan say “The Power to Surprise”.
The Kia GearUp surprise? My very own personalized helmet with the Canada flag and my name “V. Chang” on it. It is a very nice touch!
My own personalized Kia racing uniform. Again, with the Canada flag and my name “V. Chang” on it. Being a race car driver was always my dream since I was a kid, even just being able to be a race car driver for 1 day, my dream came true! Thank you Kia Motors for ful-filling my long lasting dream!
How do I look with the helmet on? Do I look like the Speed Racer? LOL
At this point, I am super thirsty, got to try some of the Kia GearUp power drinks!
But before we start our racing session, we warm up our driving skills by Go-Karting first!
Putting on the helmet with my Toronto Raptors Drake Night tee!
Before my drive, cameraman takes some picture and video footage of me.
Go-Karting is fun! But now, more fun is coming as we get to test drive some of the Kia vehicles on the specific track course. In this picture, it is a Kia Rio, a subcompact hatchback. In this drill, we are being asked to maneuver this nimble Kia Rio through pylons in the slalom driving. This Kia Rio also comes with a backup camera, so the instructor wants to demonstrate how effective the backup camera system is that he asks us to completely park the Rio without the use of any rear view mirrors but instead look into the backup camera. I am amazed how accurately and easy to use with the backup camera system.
Another Kia GearUp drill is to drive this Kia Soul in a slippery surface and getting a chance to do some drifting. Remember the famous movie, “Fast & the Furious”? Although, not as intense in this case, since those guys in the movie are professional stunt drivers, the objective of this drill is to drive the Kia Soul in relative high speed is to start drifting and using hand brake to drift hard in tight corners. It is definitely lots of fun with this Kia Soul and it’s ability to drift on the slippery surface.
After the morning session, it’s time for lunch. Kia Motors surely treat us like Superstar VIP, but then again, during this whole entire trip, we are Superstar VIP. :) This lovely food truck have some great chef, cooking up some delicious authentic food items.
There are fruit salad, dessert, humongous burgers, gazpacho and croquettes.
And of course, you haven’t visit Spain if you don’t try this big wok of seafood paella!
Everyone is all smiles after lunch. These Kia Motors staff are just a happy bunch! They are fun people too!
Time to put on my Kia Racing Gear on!
Still admiring my own personalized Kia GearUp racing helmet. Kia, that’s a nice touch!
The tour bus drives us the racing pit area, getting ready to check out the Kia racing vehicles.
Me posing at the starting grid line of the Kia GearUp.
Introducing the two special modified rally edition of the Kia Pro C’eed GT! Kia Pro C’eed GT isn’t available in Canada but I do hope one day it is available because it has an amazing sporty design all-around and amazing driving performance. I would have to say that I am possibly the ONLY Canadian who have driven this rally edition of the Kia Pro C’eed GT. It is such a great honor!
After the driving the rally edition of the Kia Pro c’eed GT, the TV Host wants to ask me some questions about my driving experience.
In this picture, I am demonstrating the amount of G-force I have experienced when the professional rally driver took me for a lap around the Castelloli Circuit.
Thank you to Kia Motors for presenting me with this lovely “Certificate of Completion”! Such a great memory to have!
And of course, I got to share the joy and honor with my buddies. On my left is Andrew from Kia Canada and on my right, Silvio, who has been helpful assisting me throughout this entire trip!
And before we head back to our hotel, we are doing some group pictures for memories. As you can see, the hardworking production and camera crew are taking more pictures and video footage for us.
As my peeps know, I love my signature “Jumpiing” pose!
Group picture of our 13-member Kia GearUp Global Ambassadors!
Group picture of the Kia GearUp Global Ambassadors, plus our buddies and other Kia Motors Executive team.
After a full-day of racing fun at the Castelloli Circuit, it’s time for a nice dinner.
Having a short night walk along the streets towards our restaurant.
Beautiful square in Barcelona, where our restaurant is located.
To start off, we have some salad and olives.
I decided to check the rooftop infinity swimming pool on top of my 5-star Grand Central Barcelona.
This infinity swimming pool changes colour too! Time to sleep, needs to re-energize for more fun Kia GearUp the next day!