Saving their best till last in Super GT

Saving their best till last in Super GT


Japanese Aston Martin Racing Partner team, D’Station Racing certainly saved their best till last with their best performance of the season at the finale of the 2020 Super GT Series from the Fuji International Speedway earlier today.

Having endured what could only be described as a ‘difficult’ season with their AMR Vantage GT3 competing in the GT300 class, circumstance finally allowed the green liveried #9 car to race its own race at a chilly Fuji circuit to end the year with a magnificent P5 result. 


Placed more than on the back foot with the troubles that the CV-19 would present them at the start of this delayed 2020 season, both with the lack of preferred Pro driver in Nicki Thiim to double with their own Tomonobu Fujii as well as not being able to have the engineering services of Prodrive team directly available on site each weekend, the team continued their racing obligations to the honourable standards usually expected from any team within this racing arena.

With Kei Cozzolino having usually helping out with Fujii within the car after it became clear that Thiim would not be able to travel, it was to be their own GT4 racer, Takuro Shinohara who would get to see out the season at the eighth and final round of the season at Fuji.


Having Qualified down in P22, it didn’t take Fuji long to start showing what he could do as he and the #9 car steadily improved its track position – four places on the opening two laps alone before circulating just outside of the top ten in class by the end of the fifteenth lap.

Just before halfway through the sixty-five lap race, Fujii even went as high as leading the class as those in front pitted before he had to do the same on lap 28, passing the car over to Shinohara for only his second race within the Vantage GT3 in the Series.


Not losing any track position or indeed time to any untimely Safety Car periods this time as in previous rounds, Shinohara was able to consolidate the cars position on track after their stop to climb back up the leader board from P7 (after the final GT300 car had pitted) to run a solid P5 until the chequered flag to claim their best finish of the season.

This result being only their third Drivers Championship points scoring finish of the year sadly left the team and drivers languishing further down the order than their efforts deserved – P19 out of 30 in the Team’s Championship and P22 out of 30 in the driver’s Championship.


Having completed this series but still have two rounds of their Super Taikyu commitments remaining over the next two months, we now look forward to see what they have planned for 2021 in and (potentially) outside of Japan but as usual, until they confirm anything else is simply speculation!!

Photo credits – D’Station / Pacific / Super GT
Sunday, November 29, 2020 | Read more...
D'Station Racing see out a difficult Super GT season at Fuji this weekend

D'Station Racing see out a difficult Super GT season at Fuji this weekend

 


This weekend sees the concluding round of the 2020 Japanese Super GT Series, back again at the Fuji International Speedway Circuit for the fourth time this year in another racing season ravaged by the effects of the global pandemic.

The D’Station Racing team and their title sponsors Pacific had high hopes for the new season having secured the racing services of a one, Nicky Thiim but a lot of those hopes and aspirations quickly faded as it soon became apparent that neither Thiim nor the supporting Prodrive engineers would be able to freely travel in and out of the country as the world slowly worked out how to deal with the virus.


Securing the racing services of a Japan domiciled Italian in Kei Cozzolino at the last minute, the team at least had a co-driver for their home-grown Tomonobu Fujii but having swapped to Michelins for 2020, with no AMR technical support in attendance at the circuit (although the do benefit from their support on-line) and Cozzolino’s initial lack of knowledge of the Aston (being predominantly a Ferrari racer), the team would always be on the back foot.

Despite all of that, the team has at least scored nearly twice the number of Team Championship points than they did last year, first time out with the new Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage GT3.


Going into this final round of the season, Fujii is again partnered by one of the team’s AMR Vantage GT4 racers from the Super Taikyu Series in Takuro Shinohara who deputised for the Italian whilst he was unavailable to compete having competed at Le Mans for another team.

Sadly for them, there is nothing more to race for than pride but at least the squad have plenty of data from the previous rounds and official tests at the circuit this year for them to arrive at Sunday’s race start in the best position possible.

Photo credits – D’Station Racing / Super GT
Thursday, November 26, 2020 | Read more...
Seats available in David Appleby Eng prepared AMR Vantage GT4's for 2021

Seats available in David Appleby Eng prepared AMR Vantage GT4's for 2021



DAE offers the opportunity to participate in British and or European GT4 sharing our brand-new Aston Martin GT4 with your own co-driver or our in-house pro driver, who can help you win the championship.

DAE (David Appleby Engineering) is an AMR Partner team and British motorsport engineering specialist founded 1988 by David Appleby. The team is run by David and his son James who have many years of experience in both British and international motorsport.

DAE is an Aston Martin Racing Partner team. The team operates from its impressive 14,000 sq ft premises, 5 minutes from Silverstone circuit. With a highly professional and well experienced crew of mechanics, championship winning AMR GT4 engineer – and a pair of fully rebuilt, race ready and fully updated Aston Martin GT4s

DAE provides a complete pay-and-drive package and can also assists the drivers with everything from finding the right equipment, physical training and diet.

We are extremely proud of being the best equipped and turned out team in the paddock.

For more information on race opportunities and budget please contact James Appleby - James@davidapplebyengineering.com or on 01280 416441

Source material - Racecarsdirect.com

Wednesday, November 25, 2020 | Read more...
AGS Events Racing extend their Championship winning performance at FFS GT4 Finale

AGS Events Racing extend their Championship winning performance at FFS GT4 Finale

 


Congratulations again go out to the AGS Events Racing team for another strong performance at the final (re-arranged) round of the French FFSA GT4 Series from the Circuit Paul Ricard at the weekend where they secured not just three more class podiums across the two final races but also the Pro-Am Teams Championship title.

Having already secured both the Am, Silver Cup and Team’s titles in the sister SRO sanctioned GT4 European Series at the circuit the weekend before, last weekend’s FFSA GT4 finale was always going to be difficult task for the team to achieve anything more despite their #89 Pro-Am entry of Nicolas Gomar and Mike Parisy laying in second place in the Championship such was the points deficit.


What seemed an almost impossible mountain for them to climb needed two class wins and then rely upon the then Championship leading duo not to score so very nearly came off in the end for the #89 car – finishing on the podium in both races, winning the second and final race of the year but sadly ‘only’ in second place in the weekends first race to miss out on the Pro-Am Championship by just four points to the #42 car of Fabien Michel and Gregory Guilvert who actually failed to score in both races!


Those results from the #89 car were enough though for them to secure the Team’s Championship title from the Santeloc Racing team by just four points.

The weekend also saw a strong finish from the teams #161 Am class car of Didier Dumaine and Christoph Carriere who earned a P3 class podium in race 1 and a P4 class finish in Sunday afternoon’s finale to see out their season together fourth overall in that Championship.


The team’s other full season entry of Gilles Vannelet and Akhil Rabindra finished P9 and P6 in class respectively to see other their obviously disappointing season in P9 overall for the year.

This final race weekend was also going to give their GT4 European Series Silver Cup winning duo of Valentin Hasse-Clot and Theo Nouet one final bow out this year aboard their AMR Vantage GT4 but contact for Nouet going into turn 1 in the dark of race 1 saw his car spin off and into the concrete wall in ball of steam. Thankfully, the young Frenchman was able to exit the car himself before being last seen exiting stage left with red mist presumably very much in his eyes. 


Unfortunately, the team was not able to repair the car in time for Sunday’s final race where Hasse-Clot was due to start from pole position.


Well done to the team anyway for even more Championship winning credentials in their first season with the AMR Vantage and we look forward to further confirmation of their ongoing race plans for next season.

Photo credits – FFSA GT4 / AGS Events

 

Monday, November 23, 2020 | Read more...
The ultimate AMR collection

The ultimate AMR collection


Aston Martin Racing has created the Vantage Legacy Collection to commemorate one of the most successful periods in the luxury British sportscar brand’s racing history, as well as one of the company’s most successful racing cars – the Aston Martin Vantage.

This period, between 2009 and 2018, brought Aston Martin two 24 Hours of Le Mans class victories (in 2014 and 2017) and seven FIA World Endurance Championship titles, as well as numerous international sports car championship titles in British GT, GT World Challenge (Europe) and the European Le Mans Series.

The trio of Legacy Vantages, based on V8 Vantage road car launched in 2005, have been created in Aston Martin Racing’s workshops and is being offered for sale as a collection. It includes a V8 Vantage GTE, a V12 Vantage GT3 and Vantage GT4. All three are brand new chassis, ready to race, and have been identically liveried in sterling green with the distinctive and classic Aston Martin yellow trim lines around the radiator and cant rail.

The Vantage GT4 was the first racing car created around the VH-era architecture. It made its debut in 2009 and, by the end of 2018, Aston Martin Racing had built 107 cars, winning races and international championships across the world. Many of these cars are still competing today. The car in the collection is the 108th and final car to be made.

The V12 Vantage GT3 followed the GT4 three years later, making its debut in 2012. It soon became the dominant car in the British GT championship, winning outright titles in 2013, 2015, 2016 and 2018, proving its competitiveness right up until it was replaced by the new Vantage in 2019. Over seven years, up until the end of 2017, 46 cars were built.

The V8 Vantage GTE made its debut with the Aston Martin Racing works team in 2012 at Sebring. It spearheaded Aston Martin’s works return to production-based racing following three years of competing in the LMP1 class. The V8 Vantage GTE took its first win at the final round of the FIA World Endurance Championship in Shanghai in October that debut year.

Only six V8 Vantage GTEs were originally built, with the car racing for the last time in the GTE Am class at Le Mans in 2018. During this time, it became the most successful car in the FIA World Endurance Championship, winning seven titles and two Le Mans class victories, including a famous final-lap triumph in 2017. The GTE in this collection is the seventh and final car to be made, chassis number 007.

President of Aston Martin Racing, David King said: “For a collector, this trio of Aston Martin Racing Vantages represents the ultimate tribute to a halcyon period for the brand in international sportscar racing. While Aston Martin has since gone on to record world championship titles with the current generation turbo-charged V8 Vantage, the foundations laid by the huge success of the original car won it admirers the around the globe and led to it becoming a firm favourite with racing fans. The Legacy collection is a beautiful sign-off for this wonderful car.”


CAR SPECIFICATIONS

VANTAGE GT4

Engine & Transmission
Aston Martin Racing 4.7-litre V8 engine
Weight-reduced rear silencer or straight-through tailpipes
FIA-approved bag type 115-litre centrally mounted fuel tank with twin fill
Six-speed Sportshift (ASM) transmission
Twin-plate cera-metallic clutch with lightweight flywheel


Chassis
FIA approved full rollcage in 15CDV6 high-strength steel
Integral air jacks
Polycarbonate side and rear windows
Side sills with exposed carbon fibre rib
Quick-release bonnet and tailgate
Carbon fibre side strakes
Reduced weight wiring harness
Lightweight battery


Suspension
Double wishbone suspension adjustable for toe, caster and camber
2-way adjustable Koni dampers
Stiffened front and rear anti-roll bars
Spherical bearing suspension


Interior
Recaro competition seat embroidered with Aston Martin Racing logo
Recaro HANS compatible seat (optional)
Sabelt six-point safety harness
FIA compliant Lifeline plumbed-in extinguisher system
Lightweight door casings
Weight-reduced facia, trimmed in Alcantara
Quick-release steering wheel


Aerodynamics
Adjustable carbon-fibre rear wing
Increased protrusion front splitter
Carbon-fibre front dive planes


Brakes
Four-piston monoblock calipers fitted with
high-performance Pagid RS 29 race pads
Uprated two-piece front brake discs
Twin front brake cooling ducts
Endurance brake package
Bosch race-developed ABS and traction control system


Wheels
Magnesium 5-stud wheels
Front - 10” x 18”
Rear - 11” x 18”


V12 VANTAGE GT3

Chassis
Lightweight aluminium chassis
Steel rollcage to FIA safety standards
High speed pneumatic jack system
Low engine position


Engine
Lightweight 6-litre V12
Dry sump oil system
Engine repositioned to optimise weight distribution and centre of gravity
Power 600 bhp
Torque 700 Nm


Transmission
Xtrac six-speed semi-automatic paddle shift transmission
Racing clutch
Limited slip ramp/plate differential
Easily accessible drop gears
Carbon fibre prop-shaft


Cockpit
8862 safety seat
Six-point safety harness
Racing seat nets
Lightweight battery
Carbon fibre dash
Fire extinguisher8862 safety seat system
Driver display and shift lights


Body
Front splitter
Adjustable full width carbon fibre rear wing
Aerodynamically optimised bumpers, side sills and rear fenders
Removable carbon-fibre body panels
Aluminium roof


Fuel system
125-litre fuel cell to FIA safety standards
Twin quick-release couplings


Suspension
Double wishbone suspension with uniball bearings
Four-way adjustable Bilstein dampers
Optimised geometry for lower ride height


Brakes
Six-pot front calipers
Ventilated front & rear brake disc
Four-pot rear caliper
Manually adjustable front/rear brake bias


Wheels
Front 12.5” x 18”
Rear 13” x 18”


Weight
Dry weight 1250 kg


V8 VANTAGE GTE

Chassis
Lightweight aluminium chassis
Steel roll cage to FIA safety standards
High speed pneumatic air jack system


Engine
Lightweight V8
Dry sump oil system
Engine repositioned to optimise
weight distribution
Power > 500 bhp*
Torque > 500 Nm*


Transmission
6-speed semi-automatic paddle shift gear change
ZF Sachs Racing clutch
Limited slip combination VC and ramp/plate differential
Carbon fibre propshaft


Body
Full aerodynamic update to 2016 LMGTE regulations
Lightweight carbon fibre bodywork
Aluminium roof with driver safety access hatch
CFD optimised aerodynamics with splitter and diffuser
Adjustable carbon fibre rear wing


Fuel system
Designed to FIA safety standards
Twin quick release couplings


Brakes
Front: six pot Brembo calipers
Rear: four pot Brembo calipers
Vented discs
Pagid RS pads
Bespoke lightweight pedal box
Goodridge hydraulic brake lines


Wheels & Tyres
TWS Mg front 12.5” x 18”
TWS Mg rear 13.0” x 18”
Dunlop 305-680R18
Dunlop 312-705R18


Weight & Dimensions
Length 4550 mm
Width 1963 mm
Height 1185 mm
Wheelbase 2600 mm
Dry weight 1240 kg*
*Dependent on Balance of Performance BoP

Source material - Aston Martin
Monday, November 23, 2020 | Read more...
Going the extra mile in New Zealand

Going the extra mile in New Zealand

 


Coming first in class within the New Zealand South Island Endurance Series pays well apparently and we all know that the overall winners of that Series, the Heart of Racing team of Darren Kelly and Alex Riberas raced their Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage GT3 in aid of the country’s Starship Foundation.


What we didn’t know was that at the Series prize giving evening after their final round of their delayed season at the Levels Raceway in Timaru was that most class winners elected to donate their prize fund to the Starship Foundation via the Heart of Racing Team.


That generosity equated to over $6,000 NZ being donated on top of everything else collected but the team.

Photo credits - SIES
Sunday, November 22, 2020 | Read more...
PROsport Racing aim high in next season's GT4 arena

PROsport Racing aim high in next season's GT4 arena

 


With the 2020 motor racing season not even yet over for several series still, it’s great to see at least one team raise their hands and declare at least some of their ambitions for next season.

Having competed in most of this year’s 24H Series Europe endurance races to come away as winners of that series overall GT Team Europe Championship as well as cameo appearances in a handful of other European races in other series, has the German based PROsport Racing Team this week announce that they plan to compete within the DTM Trophy Series with at least one – maybe with both of their Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage GT4’s.


With the DTM Series itself now more secure going into 2021 with a recently confirmed framework of  GT3 racing, their new for 2020 GT4 Series looked more than promising after teams like Maxime Martins new squad had hoped to compete within this year – before that virus ruled out many racing opportunities so 2021 should be no different as long as drivers can find those suitably cash rich sponsors

Having dipped their toe into the Series this year at the Lausitzring where drivers Tim Heinemann and Moritz Oestreich showed off the potential of the car, Team boss Christoph Esser added “In the coming season, we want to rely on Aston Martin in the DTM Trophy and bring one or two Vantage to the start line. We will announce the driver line-up at a later date."


As with anything motorsport, nothing is confirmed until all monies have been paid and the car and crew arrives at the circuit and hits the track for the first session but at least this news give us positive encouragement ahead of this year’s long bleak winter months before we hopefully come out the other side fit and well, with a vaccine and raring to get back to the business of racing.


We should also see one of the team’s AMR Vantage GT4’s compete at the 24H Series yearly 24 hour opener in Dubai in mid-January 2021 – again, no drivers have yet been mentioned for that or any of the other sixty five indicated entries.

Photo credits - 24H Series / DTM Trophy

Saturday, November 21, 2020 | Read more...
Final dance for AGS Events Racing four Astons at FFSA GT Paul Ricard finale

Final dance for AGS Events Racing four Astons at FFSA GT Paul Ricard finale

 


Their delayed 2020 season started with a four-car test at the pre-season FFSA GT4 Series shakedown at Nogaro in early July and their season will finish with a four-car effort at the final round of the season at Paul Ricard this weekend.

Having already scooped the GT4 European Series Silver Cup, Am Class and Team Championship titles at this circuit last weekend in their first year of running the new 2019 Aston Martin Racing, the AGS Events Racing Team will again field all four of their AMR race cars at this weekend’s final round of the French National Series – again one that the team could (mathematically at least) secure should results go their way of the weekends two races.


Drivers Nicolas Gomar and Mike Parisy presently lie in second in the Pro-Am Drivers Championship table some 47 points back from the class leaders but with 50 points still available – anything is still possible.

Joining them again in that class is the Akhil Rabindra/Gilles Vannelet car who presently lie in P9 after what can only be described as a disappointing season. They are joined by their Am Class, full season entry of Christophe Carriere and Didier Dumaine who themselves just lacked a string of consistent finishes that would have otherwise had then in a Championship contending position.


Making up the foursome is the GT4 European Series Silver Cup Champions of Valentin Hasse-Clot and Theo Nouet who have spent the whole week at the circuit since the final round of that series last weekend, through a GT3 test with Garage 59 before being finally confirmed by the series as running today.


After Free Practice on Friday, Qualifying and an evening race awaits the team on Saturday before a daytime race on Sunday sees out their 2020 season. Both races will again be streamed live via the series website – but it is only with French commentary!!


This will be the Series second visit to the Circuit Paul Ricard after their original post of call at Ledenon was cancelled at the last moment due to the areas ongoing CV-19 situation.

Photo credits - FFSA / AGS
Thursday, November 19, 2020 | Read more...
Double delight in Asian Le Mans Series for TF Sport

Double delight in Asian Le Mans Series for TF Sport


TF Sport enters a second Aston Martin Vantage GT3 for the 2021 Asian Le Mans Series, at the recently relocated venue of Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi. Established teammates John Hartshorne and Ollie Hancock, will be joined by factory driver and 2020 24 Hours of Le Mans winner, Charlie Eastwood.

Hartshorne and Hancock have raced Ferrari GT3s together for the past three seasons and have both previously competed in the Asian Le Mans Series, albeit in LMP machinery.
The duo have enjoyed some successful test days with the UK-based team, to prepare for the four, four-hour endurance events.


John Hartshorne - “I’m really excited to be driving the Aston Martin Vantage GT3 with a factory driver and a very accomplished team. We have all the ingredients we need for a good chance at success.”

Eastwood will make his series debut in February next year, however the 25 year old is no stranger to TF’s GT3. Alongside World Endurance Championship teammate Salih Yoluc, Charlie took eight podiums, including three victories, in this season’s International GT Open.


The second Vantage will run under the TF Sport banner, alongside the Oman Racing with TF Sport entry of Ahmad Al Harthy, Tom Canning and Jonny Adam. The first two races will be held between February 4-6 and the final two races are expected to take place on February 18-20. Two different layouts of the track will be used, as well as the combination of night, day and twilight racing. A full schedule and entry list will be released at a later date.

Source material - TF Sport



 

Thursday, November 19, 2020 | Read more...
D'Station Racing AMR after more Super Taikyu success at Motegi

D'Station Racing AMR after more Super Taikyu success at Motegi

 


Whilst many race Series and Championships around the world have already come to an end for 2020, the Japanese Pirelli Super Taikyu Series is still going strong having only started their revised six round calendar back in early September with a twenty-four hour race at Fuji International Speedway.


Within this Series is of course the D’Station Racing team with their #777 Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT3 for drivers Satoshi Hoshino, Tomonobu Fujii and Tsubasa Kondo as well as their new for 2020 Aston Martin Racing V8 Vantage GT4 for a driver crew of up to five drivers. As far as we can find out, the #47 car will be crewed by (at least) Tatsuya Hoshino, Max Orido and Takuro Shinohara.


This weekend see the Series fourth round take place at the Twin Ring Motegi racetrack and features a five-hour race in front of the multi class series where the team’s AMR GT3 will compete within the ST-X class and the GT4 within the ST-Z Class.


Whilst the GT4 crew have been scoring regularly in the series so far having claimed a class pole position and then a P2 finish in class last time out at Okayama whilst the GT3 crew claimed their first double digit points haul of the season at Okayama with a dominant light’s to flag win.

Going into this round, the #777 lays P5 in Class whilst the #47 laps P2 in class with all still left to race for!!

Photo credits - D'Station Racing
Wednesday, November 18, 2020 | Read more...
With success comes reward

With success comes reward

 


Touching briefly upon the success of so many Aston Martin Racing teams at last weekend’s finale of so many Series and Championships across the world, that was a simply case of Wow – just wow!!!

Possibly a once in a lifetime experience, we can be only contented that we were there watching (albeit from a distance) as a global pandemic had previously threatened everything to a point of near extinction and we can only thank those within those organisations who put in the effort and additional mileage in to get these series and Championship’s running – yet alone concluding to such a degree of excitement and success in which we can all rejoice in.


With that success naturally comes reward and for some lucky drivers, that reward comes as early as this week when a number of AMR Vantage GT4 runners get to make that next step up the GT ladder in testing an AMR V8 Vantage GT3.

It has already been publicly known that one half of the new 2020 IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge GT4 Championship winning team in American Nate Stacey has made his way across the Atlantic after his and Kyle Marcelli’s Championship winning performance at the Sebring International Raceway at the weekend to test a Garage 59 Vantage GT3 at the Circuit Paul Ricard this week.


Joining him will be the new 2020 GT4 European Series Silver Cup winning AGS Events Racing crew of Valentin Hasse-Clot and Theo Nouet. Not a stranger to the team’s Vantage GT3 himself after his own GT World Challenge Europe GT3 effort fell sadly short at the final hurdle due to debris damage, the young Parisian Hasse-Clot has effectively managed his and his countryman’s development this season and has taken it upon himself and all the other interested parties in organising this private test having reached out to Stacey only recently.


The same experience is also due for a number of other AMR Vantage GT4 racers who have done ‘well’ this season and will all (as a reward) also test another Vantage GT3 at a racetrack elsewhere in Europe this week. As this information hasn’t been formalised, we will step back from publicly naming who and where just yet!!

So in the path of natural progression, as soon as one season comes to an end the search for the next Champion is already underway!!


Good luck to all involved.

Photo credit - CSJ / IMSA / GTWCE / GT4 European
Monday, November 16, 2020 | Read more...
Second At The Sebring 12 For The Heart Of Racing

Second At The Sebring 12 For The Heart Of Racing

 


The Heart of Racing team put on an exceptional performance yesterday at the final round of the 2020 season, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring. Drivers Ian James, Roman De Angelis and Aston Martin Factory Driver, Darren Turner, finished the race in second, after a grueling 12 hours on track.

Qualifying Friday in 11th, James expertly navigated the competition and made his way all the way up the front of the pack within his first drive of the day. Handing the car over in fourth to Turner, the car then returned to the front and led the GTD class for the most part. As the race went on, James, Turner and De Angelis battled traffic, conditions and then daylight, as the team strategised and made their way through the twelve hours, ending the day with a best-season, second-place, podium finish.


James added that it was "a fantastic result we can all be proud of. The team has worked so hard this year to learn and develop the car. I’m absolutely thrilled to have ended the season with a result we can all be proud of. Thank you to Gabe, Yahn and everyone in The Heart of Racing family for making this all possible. Now time to go home, let that result and the year sink in, enjoy the holidays and be ready to come back in 2021"


The team look forward to returning in 2021, ready to be competitive from the outset with their #23 Aston Martin Vantage GT3. 2020 has brought many things, but for The Heart of Racing team, it’s brought great memories, a lot of fun, but most importantly, increased funds for Seattle Children’s Hospital, and the team look forward to only furthering this next year.

Source material HoRT
Monday, November 16, 2020 | Read more...
TF Sport secures WEC Season 8 GTE Am Vice Championship

TF Sport secures WEC Season 8 GTE Am Vice Championship

 


TF Sport, Salih Yoluc, Jonny Adam and Charlie Eastwood narrowly missed out on the FIA World Endurance Championship LMGTE AM title, at the 2019/20 finale in Bahrain. A brake issue, which all competing Aston Martin’s suffered with, and an unfortunately-timed safety car period when #90 was almost two minutes ahead of championship rivals AF Corse, took away the team’s chances of taking home the championship honours.

Season 8 of the FIA WEC consisted of two pole positions, four victories, including the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans, and a third place finish for the UK-based team, which saw them lead the standings going into the last round. After a superb qualifying session, where Yoluc and Adam placed their Aston Martin Vantage GTE on the front row, the team were hopeful for a strong race.


Yoluc took the start of the finale and did a great job to hold off the #98 Aston Martin Racing Vantage of Paul Dalla Lana for the opening laps. An advantageous move by Dalla Lana saw him dive down the inside of Yoluc, only to lock up and spin. Salih managed to avoid becoming entangled in the incident, but slipped down to P2 as the #57 Porsche of Keating took advantage. A perfect first stop by the crew saw #90 jump back up to the lead in the pits and Yoluc headed out on track to double stint and hold his own around the pro drivers in his class, before handing over to Adam.

Stint duties were shared between the TF pros, after Salih completed the majority of his driver time within the first half of the race. Both Jonny and Charlie consistently ran in the top four whilst building the gap ahead of the #83 Ferrari. Unfortunately, during Yoluc’s final run, a safety car was called which took away #90’s advantage and Salih handed over to Jonny in P4, whilst #83 wasn’t far behind in P9. After going green, both Adam and Eastwood once again built up a comfortable lead ahead of AF Corse and the championship crown was in touching distance.


Drama hit in the closing hours when Eastwood reported an issue and the team were forced to extend their final scheduled stop, to change the Vantage’s front brake assembly. The crew’s slick handiwork saw #90 lose as little time as possible, but unfortunately it was enough to deny the team the chance to fight AF Corse to the flag. Eastwood crossed the line in eighth place to complete the season and secure the vice-championship.

Everybody at TF Sport wishes to congratulate AF Course, Emmanuel Collard, Francois Perrodo and Nicklas Nielsen on being crowned champions and thanks everybody for their support throughout this very unconventional season.


The team will now prepare for the 2021 Asian Le Mans Series at Yas Marina Circuit, Abu Dhabi, in February.


Tom Ferrier, Team Owner - “I would be lying if I said we weren’t disappointed not to take home the crown, but to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans and finish second in the most competitive class in a world championship, is something I am hugely proud of. Yet again, Bahrain hasn’t been kind to us, but the drivers and crew didn’t put a foot wrong throughout the eight hours and sometimes it’s just not meant to be. After finishing third last season and now second, we are more determined than ever to come back next year and win the title.”

Source material- TF Sport
Monday, November 16, 2020 | Read more...