Exciting news. From Octane Magazine:
Going for victory
Aston Martin is returning to Le Mans, and is going for overall victory with a pair of LMP1 cars...
27th January 2009
Gulf-liveried Aston Martin Le Mans car
I see this as a great opportunity to showcase the ingenuity of British engineering talent
On the 50th anniversary of its outright win at Le Mans, Aston Martin will return to La Sarthe with two Works LMP1 cars bearing the iconic blue and orange livery of Gulf Oil. In an ambitious attempt to emulate the legendary achievements of the 1959 DBR1 driven by Carroll Shelby and Roy Salvadori, Aston Martin will endeavour to bring the Le Mans title back to Britain.
'2009 is a hugely significant year for Aston Martin at Le Mans and the challenge of reclaiming victory in this famous race for Aston Martin and Great Britain was simply too great to ignore,' said Aston Martin Chairman, David Richards.
'However, we do not underestimate the task. While we have won the GT1 class for the last two years, competing against the proven speed and endurance of the diesel-powered cars with all their years of winning the prototype class, will be a massive undertaking. Nonetheless, I see this as a great opportunity to showcase the ingenuity of British engineering talent.'
Dr Ulrich Bez, Aston Martin Chief Executive Officer said: 'Racing has been, and still is at the heart of Aston Martin. Our cars today are subtle, elegant and handcrafted but they still have the genes for competition. I am happy that we have found partners who, with their support, will enable us to compete at the highest level of endurance racing.
'We will put all our heart and skill behind this project to demonstrate the essence of Aston Martin: Power Beauty and Soul.” The new car which is based on the 2008 Charouz Racing System Lola will be powered by the same production-based Aston Martin V12 engine which, last year, helped Aston Martin secure its second successive Le Mans GT1 title with the DBR9. It also powered the Charouz car to a new La Sarthe lap record for a petrol car. Aston Martin Racing is developing the car in conjunction with Lola, Michelin, Koni and BBS and continues its relationship with major partner Gulf Oil and official clothing partner Hackett.
The Le Mans 24 hour race will be held over the weekend of June 13-14