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Foster wins second Formula Ford Festival by narrow margin

Sunday, October 22 2017

Joey Foster won his second Formula Ford Festival, and his first since 2003, with a superb victory in the Final this afternoon (Sunday), edging out Irishman Keith Donegan by just a tenth of a second in a dramatic final.

Neil MacLennan initially led away from pole position with Foster slotting in behind him into Paddock Hill Bend, with the rest of the pack streaming cleanly through opening few corners behind them.

Chris Middlehurst occupied the final podium position during the early exchanges, but he was hounded consistently by Matt Cowley who was handed his reward when he muscled through just a handful of laps into the race. Donegan attempted to follow him through but he would have to wait after the safety car was deployed just a few moments later following an incident further down the paddock.

Donegan slipped past into fourth upon the race's resumption, whilst Foster stole the lead with a bold move around the outside of MacLennan at Paddock Hill Bend at the  mid-point of the 20-lap race.

Behind the leaders, a fantastic battle brewed between Darren Burke, Josh Smith, Luke Cooper and Middlehurst, allowing Donegan breathing space to chase the leaders. Donegan was shortly right in the thick of the lead battle, after rising to the top three after Cowley slid past MacLennan and opened the door for the Irish driver to follow suit.

Donegan made his decisive move to second on the 17th lap, with Maclennan following him back past Cowley, whose podium challenge came unstuck with a detour through the gravel trap just a few corners later.

Donegan set about narrowing the gap to Foster in the last two laps, but he wasn't quite close enough to make any sort of move before the chequered flag, eventually finishing just 0.107s behind.

The final was preceded by a minute's silence in honour of former BRSCC North Western Centre Chairman and Club President Tom Dooley, who passed away just a few days ago.