British GT4 Challenge open to Vantage racer owners
Aston Martin Racing has announced its first UK one-make racing championship. The Aston Martin British GT4 Challenge will start at Snetterton in April, and is exclusively open to Vantage N24s and GT4s.
Aston Martin Racing spokesman Ben Sayer explained to PH this morning that the new series is designed to help existing owners of the GT4-regulated cars make the most out of their pricey purchases.
"There are lots of people out there with Vantage GT4s and N24s," he says. "This is designed to give them a platform to race similar cars in a really competitive environment."
Entry to the series costs £12,950 per car, with up to two drivers. This gets you into all six 90min-150min races, including a jaunt to Spa Francorchamps in the summer. In accordance with GT4 regulations, and to keep things competitive, all cars will need to be fitted with a control ECU, but this is included in the price along with suits, gloves and full hospitality.
Full pitlane and paddock support is also offered by Aston Martin Racing but any fuel, parts and service items will have to be paid for. At a most basic level they'll sell you the regulation fuel and control tyres you'll need to compete, but if you're in a real bind they'll even flog you a replacement engine for around £15,000. Sayer told us that they'll even be offering Vantage N24 owners the chance to replace their 4.3-litre V8s with the 4.7-litre unit fitted to the GT4.
The only other one-make Aston Martin race series is the Asia Cup, founded in 2008, which awards its champion with a fully-sponsored season in the FIA GT4 Championships as a prize. The winning team in Aston's British GT4 Championship won't get that opportunity, sadly, but they will be offered a chance to test drive the Vantage GT2 racer, or the GT3-homologated DBRS9.
Sayer assures us that, though the series is open to the public, it is very much the real thing: "The GT4 Challenge follows full FIA regulations and will be very competitive - it really is a serious racing series".