22 March 2009
Foster doubles up in Adelaide
Many Formula 3 Australian Drivers championship records have been broken in the past few seasons, but one – a perfect score of 44 points in a weekend – has resisted challenge since 2005.
However, with a second-race win, a fastest lap and the pole position, Joey Foster completed the first F3 round 'clean sweep' since Aaron Caratti achieved the feat at Phillip Island in August 2005 to rocket into the championship lead, heading Team BRM team-mate Mathew Radisich by 44 points to 25.
After winning race one, Foster led from lights to flag in the second 12-lap affair to beat Tim Macrow to the line by over six seconds. Mat Sofi finished third, Mathew Radisich fourth and Tom Tweedie fifth.
“It's been an absolutely perfect start,” Foster said. “From the moment I turned up and got in the car it has been perfect. We have had to make a few alterations just to keep up with the changing conditions but apart from that it's been basically trouble free.
“I had no idea where I would be. I'd never driven a street track before – Le Mans is so different – so I just didn't know what to expect. It was competitive this weekend and I'm sure it will get better. I've got to go out and learn all the tracks this year, which is going to be a challenge and a half. I'm sure that guys like Tim and Mat will put up a huge challenge. I can't wait.”
Macrow's second place was made more impressive given the efforts taken to rebuild the #25 Scud Racing car after his race one crash. With an engine, gearbox and rear suspension assembly borrowed from Team BRM, the Scud Racing team worked until 11pm Saturday night to rebuild the car and ensure that it would start the race. Though it handled differently to the first race, Macrow's drive ensured he wouldn't leave Adelaide empty handed.
“To be on the grid today is a bit of a surprise given what happened yesterday,” he said. “The crash wasn't actually all that big but when we pulled the car down we found out the damage was much worse and that it had damaged the engine.
“Thanks to BRM, we got a whole rear end and that got us on the grid. My guys did a fantastic job to get the car on the grid, working into the night; I can't thank them enough and I can't thank Bill Maddocks enough for this opportunity to get in the car. It was all a bit of a last minute deal but hopefully we can get some funding and give Joey a really good shake this year.”
AmPro Tools / Astuti Motorsport driver Mat Sofi was third today, holding off a concerted attack from Radisich for most of the race. The result gave Sofi enough points to sit third in the championship after the first round – with the promise of more to come.
Tom Tweedie again won the F3 National Class, despite a stunning start from defending champion Chris Gilmour that saw the field momentarily four-wide off the start. After an early battle, Tweedie was able to pull away from Gilmour and completed his strong F3 debut by finishing fifth outright, to back up his third place yesterday.
“It's an excellent start to my Formula 3 career,” he said. “We could have expected anything more than this – in fact we didn't come here with any real expectations at all. It was my first time at Clipsal, first time racing an F3 car and we've come out of it with a real positive.”
Local driver Jesse Wakeman sits third in the National Class championship after finishing third in class, and eighth outright.
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