Louis Foster kicks off a four-race run to the end of the season this weekend on the Gateway oval in St Louis with the aim of converting his championship lead into a title.
Foster, 19, has been a revelation in his first season racing in the United States. He has won on each type of circuit including ovals and street circuits which he hadn’t competed on before, and leads the championship by 71 points. There has only been one other oval race so far this season, which Exclusive Autosport driver Foster won, so he enters the St Louis event with pedigree despite his rookie status in the series.
“Gateway isn’t the same as the oval we raced on earlier in the season, so we’ve left no page unturned when it comes to getting ready for this race,” says Foster, who is backed by Copart, a global leader in online auto auctions, and Florida-based luxury Italian garden umbrella brand Poggesi.
“We haven’t got this far by being under-prepared or underestimating the challenge ahead and we’ve had a good gap without a race to get ready, mentally and physically.
“The goal is always the same, to score as many points as possible and take the results that present themselves, not making mistakes by trying too hard or forcing results that can lead to mistakes.
“Ovals in Indy Pro 2000 are worth more points than the road and street circuits, so this is a vital event and we’ll be approaching it like that.”
Foster’s win at the Lucas Oil Raceway Park surprised the paddock because oval racing is considered an art that takes time to perfect, especially for European-based drivers trying them for the first time. However, Foster has hit the ground running on ovals and in general as he is the only rookie in the top three in the championship.
“The whole Exclusive Autosport team did a fantastic job to prepare me at the Lucas Oil Raceway earlier in the season,” Foster adds.
“From the mechanics to the engineers and the team management, I felt like even though I hadn’t raced on an oval before the team had run through every detail and that I was confident we could score a good result.
“I didn’t expect to win my first oval race but I know how well Exclusive prepares and how well it prepares me, so I was always hopeful.
“Hopefully we can repeat that feat this weekend.”
Gateway schedule - Eastern Time (BST -5 hours)
Saturday Practice 1 0945-1015 (1445-1515) Qualifying 1 1145-1215 (1645-1715) Race 1 1415-1500 (1915-2000)