The Foster Page

Pat Foster, Driver/Builder

Pat Foster was a driving force behind the modern funny car, both behind the wheel, and in the shop. Pat was a brilliant constuctor, who's resume reads like a who's who of funny car and top fuel. Not to mention, when there was a car that needed to be shaken down, Pat was the guy that you wanted in the cockpit, as his feedback made more than one car work right.

Pat's driving career was split between AA/Fuel Dragsters, and Funny Cars, so you might not see as much here as you'd like to, but I'm gonna try and track down all the cars that he either had a hand in the construction, or drove.

Pat Foster is now back in the business of race cars...for more info, click this little link...

Pat Foster Pro-Fab

If you've got any info, please e-mail me. Link is at the bottom of the page. Thanks.

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Rockingham, 1972? Pat's all strapped in ready for a shot down the quarter.

Rick Covington Photo

Looks like they're pulling the starter off...

Rick Covington Photo


Rick Covington Photo

"I'm match racing Charlie Allen at Mo-Town Dragway just outside Detroit in 69.

This is a Po-dunk joint for sure.

We`re getting ready to run at about 8:00 PM,when I go up to the tower to speak to the operator,
I had not seen any sign of an ambulance on the grounds so mentioned this to him.

His reply was that it would be here soon don't worry.

Half hour later it was getting dark and I noticed there was no lighting past about the 1100 ft. mark.

Again I approached the operator,he said we will have cars shine their lights on the strip when you guys race.
Also there will be a flashing red light at the very end on the centerline, if you get into trouble,just head for that light.

So far so good. We go up for the first run,and again,I don`t see an ambulance - He says it`s here,down by the lights,we`re ready for you,lets get this deal going!

On the run,we get almost to the lights when a top nozzle line comes loose and sprays the windshield big time, no Lexan in those days so the window looks like shattered safety glass.

Hard to make out anything at 200mph,so I just try to go for the red flashing light.

I got her stopped in time and bailed out the side window.

As I took off my helmet and shit I was looking thru the windshield of the AMBULANCE,with it`s red light still flashing on the roof,looking right into the eyes of the two morons that were supposed to save me if anything were to go wrong!

They both had big grins on their faces and got out and said "Man,that was great,you gonna do that every run?".

They could`nt understand why I was so pissed."


A series of 4 shots here, Pat Foster at Detroit Dragway...and a not so happy ending to this run. Pat's comments are at the end of the sequence.

Foster Detroit

It's pulling the wheels, Cammer Power!

Foster header

Hmm, I remember the headers being different on Mickey's cars...

Foster Detroit

Ooh. Guess you shouldn't mix headers (weedburner/zoomie).

Foster Detroit

Everybody get a good look now, whydoncha?

Pat's comments...

"Jim - Good Eye ! Photos are from Detroit Dragway.We had broke left side zoomie the previous round - so borrowed a left side weedburner from the only other cammer guy at the race (Dick Loehr). Really a stupid move,shoulda borrowed both sides.Lost the downforce we were accustomed to having and the bitch came up on parachute pack at about where Force saw Elvis,came down hard and broke the left front spindle(only P & S I`ve ever seen break)-no guard rails in the lights so into the ditch we go.Went to the Greeks in Chicago,repaired the car and kept on keep`n on! You can see in the first photo,she was headed for the sky - maybe a guy should step off it about then,but you know how that goes - remember what I said about being stupid ! !
Dick, thanx for the shots and Sit Low........... I always did --- Foster"

All 4 photos copyright 2000 Jim Kelly and used by permission of Match Race Madness, Dick Towers, proprietor.

Pat and Mickey

One of the Mickey Thompson era handouts, here featuring the Red car, which Pat drove, and a nice insert shot of Mickey and Pat.

Jim Sorenson Collection


This is one of the earliest photos of Pat (center) I could find. the two gentlemen standing on either side of him, are Bob and Don Spar of B & M Hydros, later to become the industry giant, B & M Transmissions.
Recognize the car that they're standing in? The infamous Hemi-Cuda, first shoed by Tom McEwen, and later by Fred Goeske, sponsored by the So. Cal. Plymouth Dealers Association.
As you can see, Pat was involved with funny cars right off the bat!

Foster and  Pink

Here, Pat keeps an eye on Ed Pink, while resting a bit.

beach city

Pat in the Beach City Corvette. One of 4 different driver to handle the various incarnations of this car.

Tom West photo © 1999

fosterfest 99

Pat Foster and the Chicago Patrol Mustang...see the chunky guy right at the front of the car? Bob McClurg, big-time drag photographer!

Tom West Photo

Beach City Corvette

The Beach City Corvette. One of its incarnations, as it had a tendency to self-destruct. That Corvette curse, I guess.

J & M Racing Photo
Photo by John Ewald

Beach City

Chicago Patrol 2

The Chicago Patrol Mustang, out of Chapman Automotive in Chicago, duh. that Pat Foster I see driving? Well, yes it is.

photo by Tom West © 1999

damn yankee one

Another pair of great photos by Tom West. And, again, stories to go with 'em!

"Pat Foster built this car down at Woodie's, running it for a while, until our other new Hot Shoe, O'Donnell, jumped in. This was the first time the car turned a tire, down at OCIR.

Remember Foster walking around the car and commenting that it was the best looking car that he ever drove, which was bothering him. Said that it didn't look like a race car like that, so got a small piece of 200MPH tape and stuck it around the fuel tank breather, saying essentially, there, that's more like it.

Took the car to the line, fired and did the first burnout, which you see in the attached picture. Pat had a guy with him to help, plus the guys that were there with Don Cook. They started to back the car up, and looked like semaphore practice. Had the car swerving back and forth across the lane as they kept changing the lineup point. Foster finally just stopped and waved his arms to get everyone out of the way. Backed up and came up to the line on his own.

Couldn't hold it on the line and went on down track without fully staging. I remember something about breaking the caliper brackets so the brakes wouldn't hold."

Tom West photo and commentary © 1999

damn yankee 2

"Pulled the thing down the track with the chute out (the line is retouched out in this photo). It is interesting to see the car with the chute deployed coming down past the tree and in front of the stands. Went ahead and shot a bunch of them to see what we would get. Thanks to Foster for putting up with all the nonsense that day. You guys were very helpful."

Tom West photo and commentary © 1999

M/T red mustang

In 1969, Mickey Thompson fielded two Mach 1 Mustangs, a blue one driven by Danny Ongais, and this one, the Red car, driven by Pat Foster. Pat built the chassis for both cars, and they were the winningest things around that year...

Tom West Photo © 1999

M/T Handout

From the Darrell Karst collection

Red Setzer/Foster Tulsa

The Barry Setzer Vega...Pat drove this car from 1971 'til 1973, running up an enviable win-loss record...This looks like Tulsa, to me, probably the World Finals.

OCIR Setzer/Foster

Pat at OCIR

Tom West Photo © 1998


Pat Foster wins at OCIR, little Billy Pink, Ed Pink's son, at his side. Because on the left, Trophy Queen, Rene Bond!
To her left, little Cole Foster, already getting close to the babes...

Tom West Photo © 1999

Setzer/Foster rear shot

Looks Like OCIR, again.

M/T Red Stang

This was a track in Georgia, 1/8 mile I believe, and a race that never happened. High winds caused the drivers to refuse to run, due to the risk involved.

Photo by Marvin T. Smith

M/T Blue car

Well, Pat Foster didn't drive this one, but he built it!

Randy Bradford Collection

More Foster/Setzer

Tom West photo

Foster's Office

Pat in one of his offices, the other office required a welding helmet...

M/T red car

This really isn't supposed to happen, Pat Foster in the M/T red car, up on the wrong two wheels...

Setzer Distortion

Just shows you how those fiberglass bodies distorted in the lights...just a little bit of downforce here...Pat Foster again.

J & M Racing Photo
Photo by John Ewald

Drag News

And then somedays the bear eats you...

Pat Foster, Barry Setzer, a very winning combination. An arty shot from the lens of Tom West.

Setzer Vega

J & M Racing Photo
Photo by John Ewald

Foster and Friends

Pat and some friend relax at Budds Creek, Maryland, 1972

Bob Plumer Photo

Irwindale Setzer

Pat Foster going up against Jim Dunn for all the marbles..

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Know something I don't about any of these pictures?

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Jim Sorenson

(206) 632-4969

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