New Aston Martin Vantage GT3 riding high as FIA World Endurance Championship returns to Brazil

2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Prologue
Doha, Qatar
23rd - 25th February 2024
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Prologue
Doha, Qatar
23rd - 25th February 2024

Aston Martin’s new Vantage GT3 is back in action in the FIA World Endurance Championship [WEC] as the series returns to the Autódromo José Carlos Pace [Interlagos], in São Paulo, Brazil, for the first time in a decade this weekend, with partners The Heart of Racing [THoR] and D’station Racing.

While it is still racing for its maiden class victory in WEC, the new GT3-based challenger, which is closely derived from the new Vantage road car unveiled earlier this year at Silverstone, and built around Aston Martin’s proven bonded aluminium chassis and powered by its fearsome twin-turbo 4.0-litre V8 engine, is in a rich vein of form.

The month of June witnessed no less than five outstanding victories, including Aston Martin’s first overall win in the 24 Hours of Spa (with Comtoyou Racing) since 1948. THoR gave the new Vantage its maiden win in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship [IMSA] at Watkins Glen, while Blackthorn Racing won the Road to Le Mans race that supported the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Walkenhorst Motorsport clinched a Pro-Am class win in the Nürburgring Langstrecken Series. D’station Racing triggered the victory spree with Aston Martin’s first win in the GT300 class of Japan’s SUPER GT Series.

Now, having both recorded podiums in WEC’s season-opening 1812km of Qatar, D’station Racing and THoR head to Interlagos where Aston Martin has more GT class victories than any other manufacturer – the British ultra-luxury sportscar brand claimed three wins and three further podiums from the three events held in Brazil between 2012 and 2014.

D’station Racing, which finished third in Qatar, begins the second half of the season with drivers Marco Sørensen (DEN), a three-time FIA WEC champion in the GT classes and the new Spa 24 Hours winner, and Erwan Bastard (FRA), a French and European GT4 title-winner, fourth in the LMGT3 class standings; 33 points away from the championship leaders. They will be re-joined by Clément Mateu (FRA) at Interlagos.

THoR team principal and driver Ian James (GBR), who put in a marathon stint at Le Mans to keep the car in contention in the LMGT3 class into the morning hours, will re-join his regular team-mates Daniel Mancinelli (ITA), and IMSA race winner Alex Riberas (ESP) who along with Ross Gunn (GBR) recorded Aston Martin and THoR’s first victory with the new Vantage in IMSA at Watkins Glen last month.

THoR brings a changed look to its driver line-up for the IMSA race at the Canadian Tires Motorsport Park [Mosport], IMSA’s only stop in Canada during the season, and an event the team won in the GTD class in 2022. Joining Roman De Angelis (CDN) (that season’s IMSA GTD champion) in the #27 GTD car will be Magnus Racing regular Spencer Pumpelly (USA) who also finished on the GTD podium along with John Potter (USA) and Andy Lally (USA) at Watkins Glen. He replaces Zacharie Robichon (CDN) who will race in Brazil.

With Gunn’s regular GTD Pro class partner Riberas also racing at Interlagos, the British works driver will be joined by another of the team’s Pro racers, Mario Farnbacher (DEU) in the #23 GTD Pro car, as the duo look to maintain the winning momentum and improve on THoR’s GTD Pro podium finish at Mosport in 2022.

Adam Carter, Aston Martin Head of Endurance Motorsport, said: “The new Aston Martin Vantage GT3 enjoyed a very successful June, with victory in the 24 Hours of Spa and also its maiden win at IMSA level. It proved very competitive at the last round of the WEC, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and so we know the car and the teams can fight for victory. That said, this is a world championship and the opposition is fiercely competitive. It’s good for Aston Martin and Vantage to be returning to Brazil after 10 years away from the calendar, and given our record at the track, there is every reason for us to be aiming to add to that tally this weekend. We’d also like to wish THoR every success in IMSA this weekend. The win in GTD Pro at Watkins Glen was well earned, and it would be great to see the GTD entry enjoy similar success at Mosport.”

Official practice for the 6 hours of Sao Paulo begins on Friday, 12 July at 1045 local time (1445 BST) with the race beginning at 1130 (1530 BST) on Sunday. Practice for the IMSA event at Mosport also begins on Friday, 12 July, at 1345 local time (1835 BST) with the race starting at 1105 (1605 BST) Sunday.

2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Le Mans Test
Le Mans, France
7th – 9th June 2024

Photo: Drew Gibson
World Endurance Championship.

Round 8, Brazil.

27th – 30th November 2014.

Photo: Drew Gibson.
World Endurance Championship.

Round 8, Brazil.

27th – 30th November 2014.

Photo: Drew Gibson.
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Doha, Qatar
February 28th – March 2nd 2024
Photo: Nick Dungan / Drew Gibson Photography
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Le Mans, France
10th – 16th June 2024

Photo: Drew Gibson
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Le Mans Test
Le Mans, France
7th – 9th June 2024

Photo: Drew Gibson
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Prologue
Doha, Qatar
23rd – 25th February 2024
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Le Mans, France
10th – 16th June 2024

Photo: Drew Gibson
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Doha, Qatar
February 28th – March 2nd 2024
Photo: Nick Dungan / Drew Gibson Photography
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship Round 4
Le Mans, France
10th – 16th June 2024

Photo: Michele Scudiero / Drew Gibson Photography
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Le Mans Test
Le Mans, France
7th – 9th June 2024

Photo: Michele Scudiero / Drew Gibson Photography
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Le Mans Test
Le Mans, France
7th – 9th June 2024

Photo: Michele Scudiero / Drew Gibson Photography
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Le Mans Test
Le Mans, France
7th – 9th June 2024

Photo: Michele Scudiero / Drew Gibson Photography
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Doha, Qatar
February 28th – March 2nd 2024
Photo: Michele Scudiero / Drew Gibson Photography
2024 FIA World Endurance Championship
Le Mans, France
10th – 16th June 2024

Photo: Drew Gibson

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