15 June 2015
ASTON MARTIN RACING LEAVES 2015 LE MANS EMPTY HANDED
The Aston Martin Racing team has left Le Mans empty handed and disappointed after coming so close to a second consecutive GTE Am title and a first place in the third round of FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC).
After taking pole in both the GTE Pro and Am classes, all five Aston Martin Vantage GTE cars ran near faultlessly - a power steering issue on the #95 Pro car in the first hour of the race the only exception to total reliability.
The #99 Vantage GTE was comfortably leading the Pro class into the second half of the race when it collided with an LMP2 car at the Mulsanne chicane necessitating nearly an hour in the pits for repairs. Earlier the #97 Pro car, with its distinctive livery, had to retire when the engine was damaged by the high kerbs at the same Mulsanne Chicane. At that point, it too was in contention for the lead.
While the rest of the GTE Pro and Am classes were falling by the wayside, the #98 Vantage GTE Am car, driven by Paul Dalla-Lana, Pedro Lamy and Mathias Lauda, was running faultlessly and incident-free. With just 45 minutes to go, it was not only comfortably leading the GTE Am class by nearly two laps, but was also the lead GTE car overall in the WEC. With only around 12 laps to complete, the car crashed near the end of the first lap on its final stint, immediately retiring. Earlier the #96 Vantage GTE Am car had also retired after leaving the circuit and sustaining considerable damage.
The #95 and #99 Vantage GTE Pro cars were left to complete the 24 hour race, crossing the finishing line in fourth and sixth place respectively in the Pro class.
The Aston Martin Racing team now heads to the Nürburgring on 30 August for the fourth round of the FIA WEC.
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