Over the past few months you’ve probably noticed the O’Neal Weekend Date feature running every Friday on Racer X Online. That’s where we let you, the reader, vote for the next O’Neal model. Thousands of votes were tallied, and the winner was the beautiful Ashton Shane of San Francisco. O’Neal will now provide her and a friend transportation to Los Angeles, hotel accommodations for three days and two nights, $500 spending cash, and a check for $1,000. Ashton then will be in a professional photo shoot, selected shots from which will be featured in either a 2008 O'Neal Print ad, The SpeedPlanet Calendar, and/or an O'Neal Poster. We gave Ashton a call today to talk about her winning strategy. If you want to learn more about Ashton, visit her homepage at www.ashton-shane.com or check her out on O'Neal's website.
Racer X: Ashton, what’s going on?
Ashton Shane: Oh, just trying to figure out my GPS. I’m driving to Los Angeles and I think I’m lost. I’m the only person who has a GPS and doesn’t listen to it. I just get zoned out listening to music.
Thank you! It took a couple days to find out because they kept calling me and I kept missing the calls, calling back, and they weren’t in the office. But I didn’t think they would call me to tell me I lost, so….
I checked out your website, and it looks like you’re definitely not lacking in modeling experience.
It’s funny, I started out acting—it’s always been my first love—and modeling is just like the bread and butter for me.
So you’re saying you’re bad at acting.…
[Laughs] No, I’m just saying there’s no work in San Francisco. That’s why I’m going to L.A.
How old are you, Ashton?
I am 22. I think they had it wrong on the website because either it was a mistake that I made, or maybe it was because I entered so many times that when I first did I was 21.
How did you find out about the O’Neal contest?
Everybody already asks me that. I either did a Google search or I think a few years ago a girl named Karen Douglas won, and she used to do Hawaiian Tropics with me, so I found out about it through her. But I entered the past few years but never won till now.
You’ve obviously followed this for a while, so you must be familiar with motocross and supercross racing.
I have worked supercross twice in the past, and I’ve done a couple motorcycle events at Sonoma Raceway, and maybe something else. Unfortunately, I never get a chance to work in the pits. I’m always on the outside and I’m never where the action is. I’m hoping with this I might be able to do that.
Back to the contest, when it was coming down to the final contestants, were you telling all of your friends to go online and vote, or did you just let things play out?
I campaigned like I was trying to be the president! And my friends hate it because I enter contests all the time and always lose. This time it was harder to get people to vote because they wanted email addresses, but my friends are really supportive and they’ll do anything they can to help. I like to think it’s because of them that I get anywhere with these contests. So a big thanks to my friends.
I hope so! But I did campaign on MySpace, Facebook and also my personal website. I tried! Most girls enter and think they can just win strictly off the way they look, but people also like to see that you put in a little bit of effort.
So far, what would you say your biggest modeling gig has been, prior to this O’Neal contest, of course?
I’ve done a lot of magazine print editorials, in Health magazines and Ballys, etc. I do a lot of fitness modeling, which is crazy. You know how they sell the home equipment for stores? I’m going to be on all the boxes that they carry in Target, Marshall's and places like that. It’s cool because that is stuff I’ll actually buy.
Have you ever bought a product with yourself on it?
I don’t think I have. Probably because I have the things already. Like, I’m on a hair-straightener box, and those workout boxes, but I already have all that stuff, so I don’t need to replace it. But it would be really weird going to the register and buying a product with yourself on it [laughs]!
Do you have any advice for all the aspiring models reading this?
Oh, there’s so much. I get questions about this almost daily. I think you have to realize that it is a job. You just can’t join an agency or say you’re a model and everything falls in your lap. You really have to hustle the market, and a lot of work is going to come from you and not your bookers. You have to make good connections and you have to follow up. There’s just too many girls that think they’re going to make it off looks alone. I think the best thing to do is if you want to do it, focus on it.
And enter the O’Neal modeling contest.
How long have you been modeling, Ashton?
I’ve been doing this since I was 17. I used to forge paperwork because I wanted people to think I was old enough to do it, because I lived on my own back then and didn’t have anybody to sign for me.
Are you at the gym seven days a week?
Not seven—I wish, but sometimes you’re working all day and then you just want to eat a cheeseburger and go to bed. I try to hit the gym the longest Monday through Thursday, but when it gets towards the weekend, I just try to fit in cardio. I’m big into running and I’ve just really have been enjoying cardio.
If you start riding dirt bikes, that’s a really good workout.
I know! I’m kind of excited, because when I was younger I loved riding bicycles, and I know it’s not quite the same, but I was pretty good at it. I could ride with no hands [laughs]!
What’s your most guilty pleasure?
I’m pretty good with my diet, but sometimes I will buy…okay, here’s an example: Last week I bought a roll of cookie dough because I had this insatiable craving for cookie dough. I ate the whole thing in less than a week, and I didn’t cook any of it! You have to take a few slices and nuke it for 15 seconds so it’s warm, but not cooked.
Wow. That sounds delicious. You know, the Monster Energy Supercross Series is coming to San Francisco this weekend. You going to check it out?
I know! I’m not sure what I’ll be doing, but I have a lady that has booked me the last couple years, and I’d love to be there because it would be my third time working there and it’s sort of a tradition because that was my first job I had when I moved to California. But it’s going to be freezing.…
So what’s the future hold for Ashton Shane?
What’s the future hold? Hmm, well, that’s why I’ve been going back and forth to L.A. so much—I’m really looking to relocate to Los Angeles. San Francisco was really good to me, but it’s just not my kind of environment. I’m from Florida, so I miss the beach and the humidity. But acting is my first love, so that’s really where I need to be, because you’re not going to make an acting career in San Francisco. That’s what the future holds for me. I really don’t plan things; I’m just too spontaneous, and I’ve been fortunate with that so far.
You have anyone you want to thank, Ashton?
Oh my, there are so many people. I want to thank everybody at O’Neal, because it was great getting the phone call and finding out. There were some lovely girls in the contest, and I wasn’t expecting that at all. And thanks to you guys because you didn’t give me a rough interview! And thanks to all of my friends. Specifically I have a friend Melina who went around her office asking everyone to vote everyday, and especially my family, too. Thanks everyone!