Heart of Racings new female line up about to prove their worth

Heart of Racings new female line up about to prove their worth

 


Hannah Grisham and Rianna O’Meara-Hunt will make their Pirelli GT4 America debut this weekend onboard the No. 26 Aston Martin GT4. Grisham and O’Meara-Hunt emerged from The Heart of Racing’s all-female shootout which took place last November at Apex Motor Club. The shootout, which saw female racers from all around the world take two-full days of on and off-track training with HOR’s drivers and crew onboard Aston Martin GT4s.

HOR had originally intended to select one deserving driver, but the performances from both Grisham and O’Meara-Hunt stood out, and the team elected to provide the pair with the opportunity to co-drive in the Pirelli GT4 America Series. Since that selection, Grisham and O’Meara-Hunt have had the chance to test HORs Aston Martins ahead of the season and are now ready to put their long awaited wait to the side and kick off their first race weekend as co-drivers.

Grisham came from a karting background before moving up to Spec Miata’s. Most recently, the California native competed in the World Racing League for the past two seasons having earned two national championship titles in the series. 


“I’m so excited for my first race at Sonoma with The Heart of Racing,” said Grisham. “It’s a real full-circle moment since I have raced karts at the kart track at Sonoma as a kid and now I’m racing there in cars. I’m ready to kick the season off with a talented, great teammate and a new team for my first SRO start!”

O’Meara-Hunt will not only make her first GT4 America start, but will also make her first race start in North America. The 21 year-old Kiwi has driven karts in New Zealand and Australia for most of her career, earning SuperKart National Champion in Rotax Lights and SuperKart National Grand Prix Champion in Rotax Lights titles.

“I’m really excited heading into Sonoma and getting this new adventure underway,” said O’Meara-Hunt. “Coming somewhat into the unknown, a new country, new series, new car, new drivers, new rules, new tracks, I have been working hard since the announcement to prep to the best of my ability and to ensure the transition is as seamless as possible. I know with the support and experience of The Heart of Racing family I am in great hands and am pumped to head out on circuit to show what the No. 26 Aston Martin can do.”

Source material - HoRT
Saturday, April 01, 2023 | Read more...
Shaping up nicely in Sonoma for three exciting series of racing

Shaping up nicely in Sonoma for three exciting series of racing

 


Not quite the clear blue skies and intense sunshine that many of us might expect for California but the opening round of the SRO GT4 America Series is shaping up nicely ahead of today’s Qualifying and first race.

With the earlier rains now hopefully behind them, the seven strong Aston Martin Racing powered contingent were quickly out of the blocks during yesterdays two Free Practice sessions with the #69 Archangel AMR Vantage GT4 car of Billy Johnson and Todd Coleman going fastest in the morning session but with the #50 Chouest Povoledo AMR of Ross Chouest and Aaron Povoledo being the more consistent with a P5 finish in both sessions.


Whilst some of these Am drivers will have had at least one GT America race already under their belts from St Petersburg a few weeks ago, for many this would be their first competitive track action of the year so far and for some – their first experience of the series in an Aston Martin.


The two Heart of Racing shoot out graduates of Hannah Grisham and Rianna O’Meara-Hunt showed an inkling of what they are all about with an impressive series debuting lap times taking themselves from P34 in FP1 (after some early technical issues aboard their #26 Am Class car to that of a worthy P14 finish in FP2.


We welcomed back the #8 Flying Lizard duo of Elias Sabo and Andy Lee as well as the #24 Heart of Racing entry of Gray Newell and Ian James. Competing the seven saw the return of Paul Kiebler and his TR3 crew as well as the #428 Van Der Steur line up of Brady Behrman and Coby Shield as they step up from the International GT Series to the Pro-Am world of the GT4 America Series.


Not letting the AMR powered GT4 America crews steal all the early event limelight also saw the #2 Flying Lizard AMR car of Jason Bell continue from the pace he left St Petersburg with by being the fastest GT4 driver in both of yesterday’s Free Practice sessions – sometimes faster than the slower of the GT3 runners in fact!!


Chouest, Coleman, Sabo, the additional The Racers Group GT4 entry of Tim Savage and Kiebler again populated the top half of the GT4 order during the mornings session but with Newell not being able to set any comparative times. Any issue was resolved into time for Newell to match his peers within class during the days second session.


That leaves just the #007 The Racers Group AMR Vantage GT3 entry of Derek DeBoer and Ross Gunn as they will run out within this year’s opening race of the GT World Challenge America Series.


Having had little time for preparation, this is we believe the first time that both drivers have spent any significant time together with this undertaking with Gunn being busy within his IMSA commitments and early test running being assisted with by Valentin Hasse-Clot.

For them, this is still ‘work in progress’ as all get to know just how things work either individually or as a collective as many of the GT3 runners are again full season returnees but at least progress is being made. Finishing P14 out of the eighteen runners earlier on Friday, the #007 finished the day P13 going into todays (Saturday’s) first Qualifying session later today.


All three series will be available to view live via each of their social media channels.

Photo credits – Teams / social media / H Pitman
Saturday, April 01, 2023 | Read more...
Nine Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT4s line up at FFSA GT4 opener from Nogaro next weekend

Nine Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT4s line up at FFSA GT4 opener from Nogaro next weekend

 


Just over a week since its sister SRO GT4 European Series announced its provisional 2023 entry list, today saw the French national FFSA GT4 Series confirm their actual entry list for its opening round of the season from Nogaro in just over a week’s time.

Like the GT4 European Series, this year’s FFSA GT4 Series sees another thirty-six cars confirmed for Nogaro’s opening double header with entries again spread across its available Silver, Am and Pro-Am classes with a mighty nine from various established Aston Martin Racing powered teams.


AGS Events Racing, Mirage Racing, GPA Racing and the Racing Spirit of Lemans teams all return to the series having competed within it last season with different drivers, but some have returned to carry on from where they left off whilst others step over or up to the series for the first time.

Nicolas Gomar’s AGS Events team sees himself this time partner team returnee, Hugo Bac aboard their #89 Pro-Am car with fellow Am class returnees Didier Dumaine and Christophe Carriere this time look towards the overall top step in class in their #98 car as something of a reduced entry format for the team this time around.


The Mirage Racing team up their FFSA package to three cars with Yves Lemaitre and Vincent Beltoise steps across the team garage from their Alpine of last season to the Aston this year with silver class pairing Louis Meric and Romain Carton pairing up in the #7 car this season. The team’s third car will be driven by Ruben Del Sarte and David Kullman, who steps up from single seaters in the silver class this time around in the #5 car.

The Racing Spirit of Lemans team brings another silver and AM class pairing in Mateo Villagomez and a returning Victor Weyrich aboard the #92 car as well as a returning Ronald Basso and new driver Clement Dub aboard the #73 Am car.


Finally, but certainly by no means least, sees the GPA Racing team again field two Aston Martins, one for their very successful Am pairing of Kevin Jimenez and Florent Grizaud as they embark upon a dual FFSA/GT4 European Series season adventure within their #72 car as well as a team swapping Tom Verdier. He swaps from the AGS Events Racing team to the #39 GPA Racing Pro-Am car to partner former motocross rider Baudouin Detout as he steps up to car racing for the first time.


Like all SRO GT4 Series, next weekend’s race weekend will comprise of Free Practice and Qualifying ahead of two, hour long pitstop punctuated races – both available live via the series social media channels. Many of the teams will already have tested at the circuit a couple of weeks ago at the series official Prologue test.

Photo credits – Teams / social media / FFSA
Thursday, March 30, 2023 | Read more...
Ohhh to have been in Adelaide last weekend!!

Ohhh to have been in Adelaide last weekend!!

 


Something that you sadly do not see much of, yet alone hear these days is a V12 Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT3. Something that you see even less of is a said V12 Vantage GT3 thundering along a well-attended public street at an unabated speed.

For those lucky enough to be at the Adelaide Motorsport Festival last weekend, that is precisely what they got as Mike Bailey’s KMB Motorsport team (and others) took one of their Aston Martin GT3’s for a weekend ‘jaunt’ down the city’s High Street as part of that Australian spectacle.

The rest of us can only dream but thanks for sharing the photos at least!!







Driving it like he's stolen it too!!!

Wednesday, March 29, 2023 | Read more...
Another quartet of Aston Martins take on the Green Hell this weekend in NLS2 (UPDATED)

Another quartet of Aston Martins take on the Green Hell this weekend in NLS2 (UPDATED)

 


After a rather successful opening round to the season two weeks ago sees another four Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT3 and GT4 platforms take to the infamous Nurburgring Nordschleife this weekend for the second round of the NLS Series.

With this week also seeing some test days take place for wannabe entries into this year’s Nurburgring 24, this weekend’s entry sees the same number of cars but not necessarily in the same order and format as last time.


The big news today was of course the announcement that the Dorr Motorsport team (of ADAC GT4 Germany fame) who will this year be stepping up to the AMR Vantage GT3 platform (for the second time in recent years ) to compete at this year’s 24 with brothers Ben and Phil Dorr sharing their new GT3 with none other than Le Mans 24 and N24 Class winner Darren Turner.

That relationship starts in earnest this weekend as Phil Dorr partners Turner for the first time in the team’s #24 SP9 Pro entry whilst Ben Dorr again competes within one of the team’s SP8T (enhanced GT4) entries alongside his new ADAC GT4 Germany partner Theo Nouet within the #150 car.


They join the now regular NLS entry from the locally based Prosport Racing team as they again field the SP9 Am Class winning duo of Maxime Dumarey and Christoph Breuer within their #17 Vantage GT3 and Guido and Guillaume Dumarey again share the #176 SP10 (GT4) car with Ukrainian Yevgen Sokolovskiy after that car also had a run out two weeks ago albeit with a differing line up.

We don’t this time see the team’s #37 SP9 Pro car that Mike David Ortmann and Nico Verdonck raced to P14 overall last time, but that car was out this week in the hands of Alex Brundle and co as they also readied themselves for the N24 entry.



Saturday’s race will follow the usual format of early morning Qualifying ahead of a midday start for this four-hour affair around the Green Hell.

UPDATE

PROsport Racing now list some slight changes with their GT4 driver line ups with Guido Dumarey now pairing with Yevgen Sokolovskiy aboard the #176 car and with Mike David Ortmann now joining Guillaume Dumarey and Jorge Viebahn aboard the #175 car.

Photo credits – Teams / social media
Wednesday, March 29, 2023 | Read more...
Feathers fly the AMR flag at GT Cup opener this weekend

Feathers fly the AMR flag at GT Cup opener this weekend


As expected, it is just the sole Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT4 entry from the Feathers Motorsport team that help to make up the twenty-nine car, multi-class entry ahead of this weekend’s opening round of the GT Cup Championship from Donington Park.

Having taken something of a sabbatical from actual racing events last season sees the 2022 GTH Class gentleman driver of James Guess return with his red, white and blue Aston Martin with former AMR Drivers Academy Champion Tom Canning beside him within their #82 full season entry.


Again competing within the GTH Class, the #82 squad will be up against eight other entries within that class, principally within either McLaren or Mercedes AMG GT4 machinery.

Saturday morning will feature early Free Practice sessions before quickly moving into Qualifying ahead of the weekend’s opening twenty-five-minute Sprint race at 14:40hrs and then the longer pit stop (driver change) punctuated race later at 17:55hrs. The weekend’s events will then be wrapped up on Sunday with a second Sprint race and endurance race to conclude the four-race opening race card of the season.

Photo credits – Team / social media
Monday, March 27, 2023 | Read more...
Success for both Aston Martin runners at BEC opener at Silverstone yesterday

Success for both Aston Martin runners at BEC opener at Silverstone yesterday

 


Saturday turned out to be a good day for the two Aston Martin’s that competed in the opening round of the 2023 British Endurance Championship from Silverstone.

Making use of a private testing day around the Northamptonshire circuit, the #6 Venture Innovations Aston Martin Vulcan of Gleb Stepanov and Stephen Tomkins and the #50 MKH Racing Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT4 of Peter Montague and Stuart Hall both came of the blocks quickly over the course of Saturday’s quick fire Free Practice, Qualifying and then three-hour race.


Despite its speed, the #6 car strangely qualifying down in P13 overall (P3 in its allotted A Class) thanks to the circuit being between slicks and wets whilst last year’s D Class champions weren’t too far behind in P18 (P4 in class) by the end of the morning Free Practice and straight into Qualifying sessions.

Starting under warm for the end of March but importantly dry conditions, Stepanov quickly fell back behind the Mercedes and Audi GT3 specification cars ahead as Montague also looked to make up places in class.


As the race progressed, three of the twenty starters were lost to technical issues but what also became apparent were the deteriorating weather condition towards the Stowe end of the circuit but towards the end of the race, it would be both technical and track limits that would threaten the success of the two Astons.

Having just made their final stop, the #6 Vulcan was soon back in pit lane with oil pressure issues where the delay would threaten their overall and class podium position whereas the #50 MKH Racing Vantage GT4 would get pinged for exceeding track limits and therefore earning themselves a drive through penalty.

Fortunately for all, the rains never materialised and delays served in pit lane were not enough for the #6 Vulcan to claim their overall and class third place whilst the #50 MKH crew were to come home sixth overall and at the top of the D Class podium.


The next round of the Championship will be around the Indy loop of the Brands Hatch circuit in just over three weeks time.

Photo credits – Teams / Jacob Ebrey / Stephen Jackman
Sunday, March 26, 2023 | Read more...
More packed grids as the GT World Challenge and GT4 America kick off in Sonoma with the GT America Series too

More packed grids as the GT World Challenge and GT4 America kick off in Sonoma with the GT America Series too

 


The two remaining SRO America series kick off their 2023 season next weekend from the Sonoma Raceway for what will undoubtedly be another season of highly competitive GT3, GT4 and mixed class racing.

Whilst the GT America Series for single, bronze ranked drivers started their own season around the street/airfield circuit of St Petersburg in Florida at the start of the month, next weekend sees the remaining GT World Challenge America and GT4 America Series kick off their season action as the trilogy of series reconvene in California.


For the GT World Challenge America Series for the solely GT3 runners, 2023 sees the rekindling of the relationship between The Racers Group (TRG) team and the Aston Martin Racing organisation as Kevin Buckler’s team get their hands upon a newer turbo charged generation of AMR Vantage GT3 for the first time since those heady V12 GTD days in IMSA a few years ago.

This time around it will be their longstanding driver/driver coach Derek DeBoer who is the lucky one as he will race alongside the former IMSA Heart of Racing AMR Vantage GTD Sprint Cup Champion Ross Gunn in the #007 car for the first-time next weekend.


This car replaces the former Ian Lacey entered AMR Vantage GT3 of Drew Staveley and Frank Gannett who championed the brand with this series for the previous two years without not much success. Indeed, the tight connection between the two AMR customer teams continue as we believe the #007 is the former Lacey prepared car.

Moving into the second round of the GT America Series sees six Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT4’s compete this time over the five that entered the first round at St Petersburg, but then many of those six are from different squads as well.


Race winner last time out Jason Bell returns with his #2 Flying Lizard prepared car alongside new (for him) teammate Elias Sabo in his #8 Flying Lizard car who races his first 2023 GT America event as well as the return of Gray Newell, Ross Chouest and Todd Coleman in their #25 Heart of Racing, #50 Chouest Povoledo and #69 Archangel Aston Martins respectively.

The #77 TR3 AMR of Paul Kiebler is another new listing this season after he has elected to race a mixture of both IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge and GT America/GT4 America events this year. The #55 Accelerating Performance AMR of Moisey Uretsky is not listed this time around.


Finally, we have the opening round of the dual driver, multi-classed GT4 America Series again kick off its 2023 season at Sonoma as seven Aston Martin powered teams return and/or debut within this hour long – pit stop punctuated series.

Returnees for 2023 sees the #8 Flying Lizard car of Sabo and Andy Lee, Ross Chouest and Aaron Povoledo in their #50 car of the same team and the #24 Heart of Racing AMR of Gray Newell and Ian James mix it up amongst the new for 2023 names within a second Heart of Racing car and new entries from the Archangel, TR3 and the Van Der Steur teams.


The #26 Heart car is something special as the team give two young ladies (Hannah Grisham and Rianna O’Meara-Hunt) the opportunity to perform on a larger stage for the first time after the America and New Zealander beat off similarly abled ladies in a head-to-head test weekend to win this fully supported prize of a GT4 America full season entry.

The #69 Archangel car of Todd Coleman gets another co-driver for this series in Billy Johnson whilst the #428 Van Der Steur team enters Brady Behrman and Coby Shield as they step up from the International GT Series. The #77 TR3 of Paul Kiebler has yet to confirm a second driver but we do suspect that it will be Jon Branam again.


All series will feature two races apiece over the Saturday/Sunday weekend.

Photo credits – Teams / social media
Saturday, March 25, 2023 | Read more...
British Endurance Championship kicks off at Silverstone tomorrow with some familiar faces

British Endurance Championship kicks off at Silverstone tomorrow with some familiar faces

 


Here we were looking forward to a final weekend devoid of Aston Martin Racing powered team participation this weekend before things really kick off again next – and then we see that the British Endurance Championship start their 2023 endeavours tomorrow.

Opening their account around the full Grand Prix circuit of Silverstone sees twenty-three multi-class cars scheduled to compete in tomorrow’s three-hour opener.


With many of those testing at the circuit today, tomorrows entry sees the return of both the #6 Venture Innovations Aston Martin Vulcan of Gleb Stepanov and Stephen Tompkins and the #50 MKH Racing Aston Martin Racing Vantage GT4 of Peter Montague and Stuart Hill.

Both cars ran in the Championship last season – the Vulcan at pre-selected rounds where the cars power characteristics could be used more effectively and without undue risk to the car but more successfully for the #50 Class D car of Montague/Hill and sometimes Dan Brown which came third overall and first in class for their efforts.


Again running a single day programme for the Endurance rounds, tomorrow will be made up of an early forty-minute Free Practice session before launching straight into Qualifying before the green flag to their season opener at 13:40hrs local.

Photo credits – Team / social media / Stephen Jackman (Eat my Pixels)
Friday, March 24, 2023 | Read more...
AMR Vantage GTE team news ahead of ELMS opener

AMR Vantage GTE team news ahead of ELMS opener

 


Two Aston Martin Racing Vantage GTE teams grabbed the headlines yesterday with a public reveal for one and a double driver change in their European Le Mans Series and 24 Hours of Le Mans for the other.

Firstly, we had the Danish based GMB Motorsport team hit the news as they adjusted their originally determined and announced driver line ups to each include one half of the 2019/20 World Endurance Championship GTE Pro Drivers Championship winning “Dane Train” into that equation.


Now joining their remaining crew of Jens Reno Moller and Gustav Birch within the ELMS season this year will be non-other than Nikki Thiim whilst his co-Championship winning teammate of Marco Sorenson joins both Moller and Birch at this years centenary event of the 24 Hours of Le Mans thanks to the team win of the GT3 Class in last season Le Mans Cup Series.

Now featuring another full “Dane Train’ within these two headline ACO events will surely be another crowd favourite in the making!


Then in Le Mans last night, we had the Project 24 team officially launch their own ELMS and Le Mans AMR Vantage GTE entry for brothers Max and Arnold Robin and their ‘resident’ professional driver in Valentin Hasse-Clot.

With the help of the official LM24 compare Bruno Vanderstick to whip up the attending sponsors, partners, friends and family into something of a frenzy last night, the real business starts in just under a month’s time as the ELMS teams kick off their 2023 season in Barcelona with the Official Prologue Test just a couple of days ahead of the opening four-hour round at the circuit.


The #44 GMB Motorsport and the #72 Project24 TF Sport prepared cars will be joined by the #95 TF Sport AMR Vantage GTE entry of John Hartshorne, Jonny Adam and Ben Tuck.

Photo Credits – Teams / social media
Thursday, March 23, 2023 | Read more...
Newbridge AMR enter the GT4 European Series in 2023

Newbridge AMR enter the GT4 European Series in 2023


Having successfully defended their British GT GT4 Pro-Am Drivers Championship titles with Matt Topham and Darren Turner last season, the Newbridge AMR Team take a different tack to 2023 - not with an Aston Martin Vantage GT3 as expected but across the channel and into another highly competitive, multi-class GT4 series. 


Today's announcement went by the way of ................

"The wait is over...

Newbridge Motorsport will be contesting the European GT4 Series in 2023!

Two time British GT Pro-AM Champion Matt Topham and 2022 Young Irish Driver of the Year Alex Denning will focus on a full season campaign in the Newbridge Motorsport Aston Martin GT4


New bridge Motorsports experience in delivering both race and championship success, positions our drivers with the competitive advantage to deliver positive European GT4 Championship results in 2023.

Lets Go!"


Source material - Newbridge
Wednesday, March 22, 2023 | Read more...