|Like Guns 'n' Roses' new album 'Chinese Democracy' - Robert Foster-Jonesí KF1 debut at Macau also rocked. The CIK Asia-Pacific Championship has established itself as the season-closing event for the premier class and draws an entry composed of European professionals and Asiaís most talented drivers. Foster-Jones has enjoyed an unprecedentedly successful 2008, but faced a stern challenge from the older, professional drivers, super-sticky special tyres and an unfamiliar track.|
"Considering Iíd never been on specials before, things started okay. I was fairly fast and we tried different settings and I was improving but then the carbí went down. I missed a couple of sessions and that hampered me in finding the optimum set-up for qualifying," Rob explained.
After qualifying in 14th place, the double British KF2 Champion made a strong impression with a drive to 8th in the first heat, but a DNF in the second race meant he would start the pre-final from 17th on the grid.
Displaying his customary 'fire and heart', Robert rose up the order and was lying in 6th place when his engine seized. Again, he would start near the back of the grid - but despite having nine rows of karts ahead of him, Rob remained unfazed.
As soon as the lights went to green, he began carving his way up the order. Showing both raw, natural speed and intelligent race-craft he worked his way into the top ten.
A superb move on Armand Convers drew particular praise. Robert followed the French ace into a corner, feinted a move down his inside and as Convers went to block, he moved to the outside line before cutting back in. With his rival off the optimum line, Foster-Jones got the better exit and smoothly took the place. Only the chequered flag prevented further progress, but Robert was understandably pleased with his performance.
"It was a fantastic race and to finish 6th on my debut - and at this level - is very promising. My times were similar to the front-runners (in fact his best time was just one tenth of a second off the raceís fastest lap) and I feel that Iím improving all the time."
His team boss, Ricky Flynn was also delighted with his driverís performance, "I said before the weekend that if he could finish inside the top six, Iíd be happy. To think that he came from the back of the grid to do that just shows his ability. If his engine hadnít broken in the pre-final, then he would have started the main final from about 6th place and I think he couldíve sneaked a podium. But itís all very positive, heís shown that he can compete at the highest level."
Robertís next race is this weekendís (6/7 December) Copa Campeones at Vendrell, Spain and will be his farewell race in the KF2 class before he switches to KF1 full-time next season - "Iím looking forward to it and putting into practice everything Iíve learned from the weekend. Itís my last ever race in KF2 and I want to end that part of my career on a high."
Visit Robís new website - www.robertfosterjones.com - to learn more about him and his racing career.