Aston Martin Confirms Driver Line-up for Le Mans 24 Hours
Gaydon – For the sixth consecutive year, Aston Martin Racing confirms its participation and the driver line-up for this year’s Le Mans 24 Hours race taking place on 12-13 June.
Two blue and orange Gulf liveried Aston Martin LMP1 cars bearing the iconic 007 and 009 entry numbers will be piloted by Aston Martin’s existing works drivers; Adrian Fernandez (MX), Stefan Mücke (D) and Harold Primat (CH) in 007 who will be joined in 009 by Juan Barazi (DK), Sam Hancock (GB) and Darren Turner (GB) who has been involved with Aston Martin Racing since its inception in 2005.
Over the past five years, Aston Martin Racing has secured no less than four class podiums at Le Mans of which two were outright wins in the GT1 Class in 2007 and 2008. In 2009, their first year of competing with an LMP1 prototype car, the team secured fourth overall, placing themselves as the fastest petrol car in the field.
Team Principal, George Howard-Chappell: “We have another strong driver line-up for this year’s race. The works team have been gelling well and has gained some valuable experience with the car this season. We also have Darren who has competed in every Le Mans with Aston Martin Racing since it was formed and will feel completely at home in the car at this circuit. Complementing our existing team, I am pleased to welcome Juan and Sam who between them bring a wealth of experience.”
Darren Turner: “It’s always good to get back into the LMP1 seat – while I am competing in GT1 and GT2 this year. I am, as ever really looking forward to Le Mans and it will be good to work with two new team mates. I think it will be tough battling against the diesels once again, and I hope we can echo last year’s result finishing top of the petrol rankings. I know all the other competitors will have made good progress over the past 12 months, so it will make for a very competitive race.”
Stefan Mücke: “It is great to drive for Aston Martin at Le Mans, we had great success last year for our first time with the LMP1 car and I am really excited to take on the challenge of being the best and most reliable petrol car there again this year. I know my team mates well now, having driven with them in a variety of different races and we recognise that we have a very reliable car, so overall I am very confident.”
Adrian Fernandez: “You work everything around this race, and I am really looking forward to it. It is great to have such a familiar team; we have been working incredibly well together in the three races this year and I’m pleased to have my team mates around me. Le Mans in particular is a race I love and we have got the car set up well so I am hoping to be closer to the diesels and improve on last year’s position.”
Sam Hancock, 30, is from England and started his career karting moving up to single seater sports cars with significant success proceeding onto Vauxhall Junior and Formula Palmer Audi. Sam has had experience in the US racing in the Barber Dodge Pro Series and is not unfamiliar to the famous La Sarthe circuit having been one of the youngest drivers ever to compete in the 24 Hours
Sam Hancock. “It is incredible to be driving for the Aston Martin team. To be a British driver representing what is arguably one of the coolest brands in the world and at possibly the greatest race of the annual calendar, is a real honour and privilege. I am happy to have this opportunity to work with such a world-class skilled team which for any professional driver is a great prospect.”
Harold Primat: “It is my second year driving the Aston Martin LMP1 at Le Mans and it has already established itself in 2009, so I am confident for 2010. We also have a proven driver line-up having achieved podium finishes in every race we have run in this year. It is without doubt the most exciting brand to drive for at Le Mans and I have got to know the team well, so we should be strong for the race.”
Juan Barazi, 42, is from Copenhagen and has had significant experience in the LMP2 class having already competed four times in the famous La Sarthe endurance epic.
Speaking at a recent test session, Juan Barazi said: “I’ve been testing with Harold and Sam and it really is an honour to be driving with Aston Martin and all the heritage that goes with the marque. I’m going to give it my absolute best and have been familiarising myself with the car out here in Spain. The Aston Martin LMP1 is such a beautiful car to drive, and is incredibly quick and comfortable which will help with the long stints. You can definitely feel the DNA. I am also pleased to be working with a team with such a wealth of experience.”
Source: Aston Martin