MAT SOFI JOINS FORCES WITH ASTUTI MOTORSPORT FOR REMAINDER OF 2008 KUMHO TYRES AUSTRALIAN F3 CHAMPIONSHIP Melbourne-based Astuti Motorsport has today announced that Mat Sofi will join the team for the remainder of the 2008 Kumho Tyres ...
MAT SOFI JOINS FORCES WITH ASTUTI MOTORSPORT FOR REMAINDER OF 2008 KUMHO TYRES AUSTRALIAN F3 CHAMPIONSHIP
Melbourne-based Astuti Motorsport has today announced that Mat Sofi will join the team for the remainder of the 2008 Kumho Tyres Australian Formula 3 Championship Season.
Sofi - and his existing Mugen Honda powered F307 chassis that has finished on the podium in two of the last three races - will be run out of Astuti's camp alongside the teams existing program in both the outright and National classes of the championship.
Sofi's Transwest Racing operation had previously been run by Graham Watson's RALT Australia outfit however the two parties parted ways recently, opening the way for Sofi to move to Astuti Motorsport.
Astuti Motorsport team owner Sam Astuti said that the chance to run a driver like 23-year-old Sofi was an exciting opportunity for his ever-expanding team that - on top of more than 15 F3 race wins - recently won its first GT Championship race with the Aston Martin DBRS9 driven by John Kaias.
The team won the second F3 race at Oran Park earlier this season and has also finished on the National Class podium with their F304 Dallara chassis on more than one occasion.
"We're very excited to have the opportunity to run Mat for the remainder of the year. He is a great driver who is really coming into his own in the championship as his recent results have shown," Astuti said.
"Mat already has a great deal of knowledge about what it takes to drive one of these cars and with our help I'm confident that he can achieve that goal of getting onto the top step of the podium.
"The team has been expanding and growing and right now we're on a high after our win with the Aston at Eastern Creek," he added. "This deal has all come together very quickly but I hope that this can be a long-term relationship and we are going to do our very best as always."
Mat Sofi said that he was excited to move operations to a team as successful as Astuti Motorsport.
"It's great to be able to join forces with Sam Astuti and the Astuti Motorsport team for the remainder of the 2008 season," he said.
"We have elected to part ways with Graham Watson and Ralt Australia, which is no way is a reflection on the team or the way that they have been preparing or running the car. When the opportunity to work with Sam and his team came up we took it and I'm very excited about the potential that the final two rounds of this year hold for us.
"My family has a fantastic relationship with Sam Astuti, his family and his team and I'm really confident everything will gel very quickly and we can go about the process of winning races."
The new Mat Sofi - Astuti Motorsport partnership will be put to the test when the Kumho Tyres Australian Formula 3 Championship for the CAMS Gold Star hits the track at the Phillip Island GP Circuit on Friday.
The penultimate round of the 2008 championship will also feature the 150th championship race since the series formation as F3 in 1999.