Friday, December 7, 2012

Aston Martin Enters North American Racing

Aston Martin Racing and The Racer’s Group recently announced a new partnership, TRG-Aston Martin Racing North America, LLC,  to form a factory-supported racing program in North America. Apparently they’re planning on participating in the American Le Mans Series, the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series, and the GRAND-AM Contintal Tire Sports Car Challenge starting in 2013. In addition they’ll be starting a single-make support series using Aston Martin Vantage GT4 race cars. I’ve always thought single-make series were a great way to level the playing field and really show what the drivers’ skills are, so I think this is a terrific idea.

The partnership has already acquired 10 race cars for the various series they plan to compete in. Look out for the Aston Martin Vantage GTE at the American Le Mans Series Winter Test (February 7-8), and again in the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring on March 16. The Vantage GT3 will be showing up in the GRAND-AM Rolex Series, while the GT4 will take on the Continental Tire Challenge. As for the one-make series, it will use the GT4 Vantage in a sprint race format and may start by fall 2013.

According to Kevin Buckler, CEO of the new partnership, “What we have crafted with Aston Martin Racing is the ability for TRG-AMR North America to compete in all the major race series with multiple teams, and to manage and support all customer programs, marketing, merchandising, transport, maintenance, a new Aston Martin GT4 race series, and even an Aston Martin-specific "Arrive and Drive" program for corporate clients and customers. I am honored to have my Aston Martin friends and co-drivers Kenneth Greenberg and Robert Nimkoff as partners with us on this new endeavor, and we are all excited to get the programs rolling immediately.”

In addition to their own team, they’ll be supporting customer teams as well. Buckler said, “We will be responsible for race car sales, race parts, at-track engineering and technical support, rebuilds and repairs and will be there with the full support and backing of TRG-Aston Martin Racing North America for any of our customer teams.”

If you’re an Aston Martin customer, you might be interested in the “Arrive and Drive” program. Aston Martin’s press release says it will “feature Aston Martin race cars at tracks throughout North America where corporate clients, team sponsors and customers can become fully immersed in a track event, with data and instruction from the team and drivers. It will be a full-service, roving driving school throughout North America centered on an amazing driving and lifestyle experience.”

I don’t doubt it.


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