Aston Martin Racing returns to Shanghai with its eyes set firmly on repeating the success of 2012.
The team took its first victory at the inaugural Six Hours of Shanghai and bring four V8 Vantage GTEs to the 2013 running to give the best chance of taking back its crown. AMR will also be aiming to take the lead in the WEC Manufacturers’ Championship, currently sitting just 4.5 off the leaders with 52 points still on the table.
“We go into Shanghai in a strong position,” said Team Principle John Gaw, who wants the team to head into the final round at Bahrain at the top of the standings. “It’s a shame that we didn’t get to race in Fuji because of the weather, but our fantastic qualifying results enabled us to come away with some very valuable points. We now go into the penultimate round of the championship in second place and just a few points off the leader. We were very strong here last year and I’m sure we will be this year, we just don’t know how strong our competitors will be. The goal, of course, is to win both classes and go into the final round leading the manufacturers’ title and both class titles.”
Darren Turner and Stefan Mucke go into the Chinese round 5.5 points behind the leaders in the WEC GTE-Pro Teams’ Championship, meaning that a win would see the duo top the leaderboard going in to the final round.
“We’re in a good position going into Shanghai,” offered Turner. “Stefan and I took the win here last year and the Vantage GTE was fantastic on this circuit. The aim is to take 26 points away from this weekend and go into the final round as championship leaders.”
The #96 Vantage GTE of Jamie Campbell-Walter and Stuart Hall currently sit at the top of both the WEC GTE-Am Teams’ and Drivers’ Championships, having scored a hat-trick of podiums since the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The duo will be looking to extend their advantage at Shanghai, where they will be joined by fellow Brit, Jonny Adam.
“We’ve had a fantastic run in the last three rounds of the championship and the aim is to carry this on into Shanghai,” said Campbell-Walter. “The car has been fantastic and our team has pushed hard all year to give us a championship-leading car. It’s great to have Jonny back in the car. It was such a shame he didn’t get to race in Fuji. He’s proven this year in the British GT Championship, which he won with Beechdean AMR, that he is ready for this next challenge and Stuart and I welcome him into the team in Roald’s absence.”
Nicki Thiim returns to the #95 GTE-Am Vantage, reforming the all-Danish lineup alongside Kristian Poulsen and Christoffer Nygaard. Bruno Senna, who substituted for Thiim in Fuji, returns to the #99 GTE-Pro Vantage alongside Pedro Lamy and Richie Stanaway.