From Newquay shores to Racing Glory
In the picturesque coastal town of Newquay, Cornwall, lies a young sporting gem ready to conquer the racing world. Born and bred in this vibrant seaside paradise, Tommy Foster is a name synonymous with speed and adrenaline.
From a tender age of 8, Tommy strapped himself into the driver's seat and never looked back. With raw talent and unwavering determination, his racing journey began, and he has since soared to new heights. Starting with an impressive karting career, he swiftly bagged multiple English and British Championships, leaving no doubt about his prowess on the track.
Tommy's evolution as a racer continued to flourish, and it wasn't long before he was making waves in professional racing. A defining moment in his career came at the Barcelona round of the prestigious Le Mans Cup, where he secured his first victory in the European Le Mans Series.
Eager to uncover the secrets behind Tommy's success, we sat down with this adrenaline junkie to delve into the thrilling world of racing. From his inspirations to the high-octane moments that set his heart racing, we were determined to get to know the man behind the wheel.
In our exclusive interview, we explored the nitty-gritty of Tommy's journey, learning about the grit and passion that fuel his desire to excel in one of the most electrifying sports globally. Stay tuned as we dive deep into the life and mind of a young champion who is revving up to make his mark on the racing circuit and beyond.
- So, where did it all begin? It all began at my local ‘Arrive and Drive’ track at St Eval Kart Circuit. I tried it once and was hooked. I was only seven years old and my parents took me as much as they could. We even had my birthday parties there. We went in all weather and of course they only use slick tyres, even when it’s raining. This is where I really learnt kart control!
- How long did it take to be confident behind the wheel? I was confident immediately and it only took me a few days there before I was usually the quickest. I would ask to start at the back to see how many I could overtake.
- Is there any management of the car that you drive? Do you have to ensure certain checks are done before racing? I race for RLR Msport and my car has two full time mechanics and a race engineer who take care of everything, but I do work closely with my engineer on the set up of the car at each circuit as the tracks vary so much.
- Tell us more about being a development driver. I work as a development driver for RACE Software. It is a really exciting time for us as we are building models for simulators to make sure that they feel like the real car. At the moment sims are like driving games and we use them to learn circuits, but they aren’t particularly realistic. The LMP3 model and the Praga model which we have built feel like the real car and are therefore vital in driver training, and the engineers can also use them to try different set ups which will in the long run save so much time and wear on the car.
- What inspires you? I am driven simply by success.
- So, how fast do you really go? My top speed is 291kmph.
- Let us in on your training regime. I will train three times a week on my simulator and maintain my physical regime four times a week. Mostly endurance training but also, I have to work on neck strength.
- Growing up by the beach, what’s your favourite thing about it? It’s awesome to live in Newquay and have grown up so close to the beach. I always realise how lucky I am to live where I do when I travel out of Cornwall.
- When travelling, what would we find in your bag every time? When I travel, I don’t really take anything which isn’t relevant to racing. My clothing is all team wear and then of course there is my fireproof underwear, from socks to balaclava, race suit itself, gloves and safety kit which includes my helmet and HANS device. Radio kit and go pro. I also always take my Dryrobe for those wet race days!
- How have you found growing up in the industry? Motorsport is an industry like no other. I have been racing competitively since I was eight years old and feel like I spent my childhood in our motorhome at race circuits. There is always so much going on. It’s intense but exciting. We are all rivals on the track but friends in the evening, kicking footballs around and walking the track. Now it’s more competitive I spend the evenings with my engineers planning strategy and going through the days data.
- When you have down-time, what do you find yourself doing? My down time is at home in Newquay with my friends, usually on the beach or surfing.
- What’s the biggest preconception for racing drivers? The biggest preconception of racing drivers is that we are all adrenalin junkies. They’re not wrong!
- Any advice for aspiring drivers? My advice to aspiring drivers is to never give up. So many times we have had bad weekends, crashes, damage mechanical failures but that’s what makes success so sweet and to share it with your team is incredible. To win my debut race in LMP3 in Barcelona was probably the sweetest moment followed closely by me putting my Kart on pole for the World Finals in Portimao with my Dad as my mechanic.
- Talk to us about the importance of sustainability and how you’re making a difference. Motorsport isn’t going away but we need to work hard on sustainability. The series which I race in uses fuel made from the waste of wine making and therefore reduces the output by 85%. In addition to that, I work with Plant One Cornwall to create natural habitats and to plant trees. Going to school in Cornwall we learned from an early age about climate change and sea pollution. We would take part in beach cleaning and learn the importance of re-cycling to keep plastic out of the oceans. Plant One are an incredible charity and I do actually enjoy taking part in their planting days. I am working hard to remain Carbon Negative throughout my motorsport career.
- Where do you see yourself in 5 years’ time? In five years’ time I hope to be racing in a top level race car, still in Cornwall, living the dream.
As we conclude this exhilarating journey into the world of racing with Tommy Foster, we are left inspired and in awe of his passion and determination. From the sandy shores of Newquay to the thrilling circuits of professional racing, Tommy's story serves as a shining example of what dreams and hard work can achieve.
We extend our heartfelt gratitude to Tommy for sharing his experiences and giving us a glimpse into the heart-pounding world of motorsport. His journey is a testament to the fact that talent, combined with unwavering dedication, can lead to remarkable achievements.
Follow more of Tommy's adventure: @tommyfoster.5 and tommyfoster.co.uk