TORQUE ON THE MOVE 2018
The ninth edition of Singapore’s favourite automotive telematch once again saw participants driving across the island as they solved riddles and overcame challenges.
TTHE heat was on, in more ways than one, as 92 participants in Singapore’s favourite automotive telematch arrived to kick off a September Saturday afternoon that required wily wits and checkpoint chasing. Under the blazing noon sun at Marina At Keppel Bay, which was the start and end point, the 46 teams lined up their decaled cars for the start of this year’s Torque On The Move (TOTM), the ninth iteration of Torque’s annual flagship event. The luxury yachts and highend condominiums at the location provided a stunning backdrop as participants filed into the briefing room to await their clue sheets and event instructions. Competition was strong from the start as some drivers, once parked, began decorating their rides. Team 47, with its Cookie Monster-themed car, beat the other Halloween-themed cars with their creativity and won the “Best Dressed Car” award. This year’s TOTM again tested participants’ street smarts, resourcefulness and powers of deduction as they decoded cryptic clues and raced around the island to grab the most points before the clock ran out.
Participants had already completed several PECs, or pre-event challenges, before arriving for this year’s TOTM, one of which involved posing with a Hyundai Kona poster at three mystery outdoor murals for extra points. Aside from the four compulsory main stations, or Torque Junctions, participants could also attempt bonus challenges which could net them either 25 or 50 points to boost their chances of winning.
For the main gig, however,
participants faced tasks that would take them literally all over the island. One of the stations was located at Hyundai’s Komoco showroom along Alexandra Road, while another was at Bukit Timah Courts, which some contestants said was one of the harder locations to decipher. Arguably the most fun Torque Junction was Saint Games in Kallang Wave Mall. Here, participants had to groove to the beat, where, depending on their level of sass or bootyshaking skills, would earn them a maximum of five stars in a fun-filled workout challenge! With a choice between two three-minute songs to dance to, they had to match the moves onscreen to win the most points. Participants temporarily became pop stars, as cameras flashed while they performed their crazy dance moves.
One of the moves was to do a split in the middle of the song 24K by Bruno Mars, which guaranteed hilarity as participants attempted to do so with varying degrees of success. Some gamely went the whole nine yards, while some decided that splitting their trousers wasn’t really an option. Depending on how they planned their route, one of the other Torque Junctions was right across the island along Benoi Road in Tuas, home to automotive repair specialist Vermogen Group.
At this station, competitors had to muster their memory and ball-throwing skills honed in school, as they battled to throw the most number of balls into a tyre ring to score points. This challenge had two parts. Teams first studied a catalogue from Yokohama – the event’s official tyre – containing information on the different models of tyres the brand offered. They then had to answer three questions: where the brand Yokohama is from, what tyre models they carry, and which English Premier League team it sponsors.
If all three questions were answered correctly, the team would receive the maximum of 10 balls, each with a feature of a Yokohama tyre model written on it. Six balls were given for answering two correctly, and just three if they answered one question right.
Faced with a set of tyre hoops, teams had to throw the balls into the correct hoop, which corresponded to the attribute written on the ball. Despite participants’ good aim, balls sometimes bounded happily out of the hoops – accompanied by howls of anguish.
After nearly four hours, participants began streaming back to the end point, Marina At Keppel Bay. Coming in third place was Team 27’s Alexander Chia and Beatrice Zhang with 605 points.
Their efforts netted them over $1500 in prizes that included a $50 petrol voucher from Hyundai, a set of four
Yokohama tyres, a $50 Kappa voucher, two Gregory Tailmate bags, two Hershel Supply Co wallets and two Fischer Audio Consonance earphones.
Just 15 points separated them from Team 10’s Ezen Ho and Chris Tan, who collected 620 points. Ezen and Chris walked away with prizes worth more than $2200, among which were a $100 petrol voucher from Hyundai, a set of four Yokohama tyres, a $100 Kappa voucher, two UB+ Bluetooth speaker sets, two Gregory Tailmate bags and two Hershel Supply Co wallets and purses. However, it was Benjamin Yap and Jared Lim’s Team 18 who clinched top honours in Torque On The Move 2018, bagging 675 points and prizes worth over $3100. These were comprised of a $200 petrol voucher from Hyundai, a set of four Yokohama tyres, a $150 Kappa voucher, $200 Rakuzen dining vouchers, a pair of watches, two Hex X
Jahan tote bags, two Sworke Cyclone sunglasses, two Fischer Audio Consonance earphones and two Hershel Supply Co purses and money clips. The duo came second in last year’s Torque On The Move, and for them, it was the twin engines of good planning and teamwork that brought the gold home.
“I think it was well executed, there weren’t any hiccups along the way, and the planning (behind the event) showed,” said Benjamin.
“One thing I learnt is that my dancing isn’t that bad,” he quipped, referring to the Saint Games station. For Jared, the event gave him an opportunity to visit places around Singapore which he “usually doesn’t get to go to”.
“We did a lot of exploring also. Teamwork was important, too, because Benjamin and I don’t really meet that often.
“We’re definitely intending to return for next year’s event. It’s a good time to get off work,” he laughed.
These participants were all smiles because they literally had the clues (or at least the clue sheet) in the bag.
Armed with a microphone, portable speaker and DSLR, Torque’s David Ting was a master multi-tasker indeed.
Figuring out how to fit everything into the car boot was a task that many parents were familiar with.
TOTM challenges required excellent balance and great hand-eye coordination as well.
There was nothing like a “high-octane” meal to refill participants’ empty “fuel tanks”.