F3

AUSF3: Surfers Paradise: Mathew Sofi weekend summary

AIR SOFI - COMING TO A FORMULA 3 PODIUM NEAR YOU! MATHEW SOFI has ended his most successful year in racing by flying his way to a podium finish at the weekends' Nikon Indy 300 F3 Challenge on the Gold Coast. Sofi finished fifth overall in the...

AIR SOFI - COMING TO A FORMULA 3 PODIUM NEAR YOU!

MATHEW SOFI has ended his most successful year in racing by flying his way to a podium finish at the weekends' Nikon Indy 300 F3 Challenge on the Gold Coast.

Sofi finished fifth overall in the non-championship Nikon Indy 300 F3 Challenge but scored yet another race podium finish in the events finale' that sealed his candidacy for the 2009 series title race.

However it was some high-flying antics in an earlier race that caught the attention of the Indy crowd and pointed them in the direction of Sofi's bright orange Total Developments Dallara F307 Mugen Honda.

In race two - held in front of over 60,000 people on Friday - Sofi, in clear view of the TV cameras and broadcast around the track on the super screens, launched his car over a kerb at the XXXX Gold Chicane at the back of the circuit and took to the skies.

As Army Blackhawk helicopters flew overhead, Sofi needed his own airspace before thumping the car back to the ground and continuing on to an eventual 7th place finish after starting from the back of the grid.

"I had some oversteer at the chicane and the car got sideways," he grinned afterwards whilst nursing only a jarred back - and some damage to the underside of his car.

"I felt that if I corrected it I may have ended up in the wall so in the end I aimed straight for the kerb and the car went skywards.

"It was a huge jump. My back is a bit sore from the landing but I was able to finish, so as long as the footage looked spectacular I guess it's all good!"

After a disappointing first race that saw him make contact with the wall at speed after experiencing a brake problem, and the high-flying antics in race two, Sofi's third race was a gem.

The Sydneysider charged forward though the field and was able to inherit third place on the last lap to record his seventh podium from the last 11 races this year.

"I was optimistic for today's race and I knew we had the speed to be up there, but obviously I was quite fortunate to get the podium in the end," Sofi explained following the final race of the 2009 season.

"Given the crash on Thursday I'm quite happy with how the weekend finished and it gives us something to build on for next year. The season was promising and changing teams' mid-season wasn't ideal, but since then the results are starting to follow.

"We'll do a lot of testing in the off-season and be back to win the championship next season."

The 2009 Australian Formula 3 Championship schedule will be released shortly.

-credit: mathewsofi.com

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Series F3
Drivers Mathew Sofi