The relative strenght of competition within the Formula 3 Australian Drivers’ Championship has been further displayed after Joey Foster put in a front-running performance in the most recent round of the German ATS Formula 3 Cup at the weekend.

Foster, a six-time race winner in Australia with Team BRM this season, returned to the German series in a one-event deal with his former team (HS Technik Motorsport) and again showed the pace that, in 2006, saw him lead the German series before a massive crash ended his year and put him in hospital with a broken back.

Foster has since orchestrated a stunning return to ‘wings and slicks’ racing in Australia this year, set to enter the final round of the 2009 F3 Australian Drivers Championship just a handful of points behind Tim Macrow in a thrilling title showdown at Sandown this November.

Foster qualified eighth and fifth for the two races, respectively, at the weekend and made further ground when the green flag dropped despite not having seen the technical Sachsenring circuit before his arrival on Thursday.

In race one he took his Dallara F307 – Mercedes entry to a strong fourth place finish, after starting eighth. Joey also set the fourth-fastest lap of the race, shadowing his HS Technik teammate Harald Schlegelmilch to the finish.

In race two he finished fifth, the same position he started, again proving him a team player as he ably backed up his teammate who finished one position ahead in fourth.

Fosters’ performance in the competitive German Formula 3 Championship – which runs similar specification cars to the local series – has served as further proof of how competitive the Australian product really is.

That Foster could return to the German F3 series after a three-year absence, learn a new circuit and yet still finish inside the top five against a competitive grid shows the speed he has used all season in Australia is competitive on a world level.

The German series is one of the strongest domestic series’ in Europe and lists past champions including Nick Heidfeld, Michael Schumacher, Tom Kristensen and Jarno Trulli, amongst others.

When Joey contested the 2006 season he was leading drivers the likes of new GP2 champion Nico Hulkenberg and A1GP frontrunner Ho-Pin Tung prior to his unfortunate accident.

Despite smaller grids this season, Fosters European-spec pace has this year been locally matched by the likes of Macrow, Mat Sofi, Ben Crighton and Tom Tweedie, showing that the Aussie field lacks nothing for pace and competition in comparison to European series’.

That will be shown at Sandown this November when Foster and Macrow will go head-to-head for the Gold Star in the 2009 championship showdown.
For more information about the F3 Australian Drivers’ Championship, head to