Swazilla – Suzy Valdivia

The Maiden of the Monster. A flair for the fast and almost-feminine. A juxtaposition of vitality and vulgarity. The Lady Badger is not new to the world of automotives, mechanics and competition, so make no mistake that she pulls her weight in the Brigade. Her place has been earned through skill and wit and she bites back just as hard as the other badgers. A delicate flower she is not.

Against the Grain

An awkward entity through and through, Valdivia was raised in a California limbo of traditional feminine roles and the reality of being raised along side seven boys. Her personality and self-reliance was a necessity and she was fully expected to pull just as much weight as the guys. This led to in interest in notably-less lady-like hobbies and activities.

Her two older brothers were car enthusiasts and, when she came of reaching-the-pedals age, they agreed to teach her to drive under a sole condition: she had to know how to wrench, first. So began the tinkering, learning on her oldest brother’s B20B8-swapped 1996 Honda Civic Hatchback. At 14, she learned to drive the same Civic she had learned general maintenance on, and soon she was hooked, eventually surpassing her brothers in both knowledge and application. Receiving her driver’s permit at 16, she acquired her first car a year later: a 1993 Honda Civic Cx Hatchback – the Monster.

You wouldn’t know it now, but the car that would become the Monster as it stands today was never meant to be kept. Valdivia intended to only own it temporarily, but soon was woo’ed by the stock grocery-getter. The two began attending Friday night drag races deep in the orchards almost immediately. Eventually, they moved up through the ranks and graduated to drag strips, then auto-crosses, and eventually circuits, establishing herself as a formidable racer and personality going as far as competing in a nationwide competition for Hoonigan Industries. She was made for this world.

The Feminal meets the Feral

Valdivia collided by accident with the HoneyBadger himself, Joe Freeman, in early 2011 while checking out the same drift shop that Freeman would later begin his drifting career with. Their abrasive humor and enthusiasm for automotives solidified their friendship early on, and later paved the way for Valdivia to meet Miguel “Migs” Senquiz at Freeman’s future shop. Valdivia took none of Senquiz’s shit, assuring both Badgers that she could hang.

Although more than capable of biting back on and off the track, Valdivia is equally well protected by her fellow Badgers. Enduring trash talk is a right of passage and Valdivia has earned her place through experience and ability, if not sheer force of will. A touch of finesse among the feral with an extra dose of creativity is all it takes to make the den feel like home.