Aston Martin AMR1


Aston Martin AMR1

Racing car


Category = Group C sports prototype | Car_name = Aston Martin AMR1
Constructor = Aston Martin
Proteus Technologies | Team = flagicon|GBR Aston Martin
(flagicon|GBR Ecurie Ecosse)
Designer = flagicon|GBR Max Bostrom
flagicon|GBR Ray Mallock
Drivers = flagicon|GBR Brian Redman
flagicon|GBR David Leslie
flagicon|GBR Ray Mallock
flagicon|GBR David Sears
flagicon|IRL Michael Roe
flagicon|GRE Costas Los
flagicon|SWE Stanley Dickens
Test drivers =
Chassis = Carbon-kevlar monocoque
Front suspension =
Rear suspension =
Engine position = mid-mounted
Engine name = Aston Martin (Callaway) RDP87
Capacity = 6000 cc/6300 cc
Turbo/NA = naturally aspirated
Configuration = V8
Gearbox name =
Gears = 5-speed
Type =
Differential =
Tyres = Goodyear
Fuel = | Debut = 1989 480km of Dijon
Races = 7
Cons_champ = 0
Drivers_champ = 0
Wins = 0
Poles = 0
Fastest_laps = 0
Last_season = 1989
The Aston Martin AMR1 was a Group C formula racing car developed in 1989 for auto manufacturer Aston Martin. It participated in the 1989 World Sportscar Championship season and 1989 24 Hours of Le Mans.

History

Following Aston Martin's racing efforts as an engine supplier for Nimrod Racing and EMKA Racing in the early 1980s, it was decided that Aston Martin would attempt to create their own car for the World Sportscar Championship. Thus in late 1987 a partnership between Aston Martin and Scottish racing firm Ecurie Ecosse would be formed, creating a new company known as Proteus Technology Ltd. (Protech). The team would develop and run the AMR1 project, hitting the track for the first time during the 1989 season.

Richard Williams was named as the team's manager. With him, Max Boxstrom would be the lead designer and Reeves Callaway, of Callaway Cars Incorporated, would build the engine. The chassis and bodywork designed by Boxstrom would be built by British firm Courtaulds. For the engine, Callaway would use 5.3L V8 units from the newly launched Aston Martin Virage, ending up with a Convert|600|hp|kW|-1|abbr=on 6.0L engine known as the RDP87. With this combination, a total of five AMR1 chassis would be finished in early 1989.

Racing Results

With AMR1 #01 completed, testing began in preparation for the first race at Suzuka Circuit in Japan. Unfortunately, #01 was involved in an accident during testing and was damaged beyond repair. Thus Aston Martin was forced to skip the first round, incurring a $250,000 fine by FIA's newly amended rule which required C1 cars to enter all round of the season and instead premiere chassis #02 at Dijon-Prenois, where it finished a disappointing 17th.

Although not part of the World Sportscar Championship in 1989, Aston Martin next turned to the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Two cars were entered, chassis #02 and #03. The cars unfortunately were underpowered in comparison to their competitors, qualifying 32nd and 40th in a field of 56 cars. During the race itself, the cars were able to run in the mid-pack before one AMR1 suffered electrical problems and was forced to retire during the first half of the race. The second AMR1 was able to continue on, was able to finish in 11th place overall.

Due to a lack of time between Le Mans and the 3rd round of the World Sportscar Championship, Aston Martin decided to skip it, returning instead at Donington Park where they took home an exciting 4th place finish in front of the British crowd, then following it up with an 8th place finish at the Nürburgring.

For the 6th round of the year, the World Sportscar Championship again returned to British soil. Aston Martin therefore decided to run two AMR1s at Donington Park, debuting newly built chassis #05. The two cars were able to finish 6th and 7th. Both cars raced again at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps where Aston Martin suffered their only other failure to finish in the season, chassis #04 having suffered engine failure. However, chassis #05, which had now been upgraded with an even more powerful 6.3L V8, was able to finish a respectable 7th. For the final round in Mexico, Aston Martin decided to take only chassis #05, where they finished 8th.

Ending the season, Aston Martin had finished in the points championship in 6th place, behind the factory Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Jaguar, and Nissan teams, although they were able to defeat the Toyota squad.

Cancellation

At the time of the end of the 1989 season, Protech was already beginning development of the AMR2 for 1990. Combining the chassis of the AMR1, the newer and more powerful 6.3L V8, and an evolved body design, the AMR2 was promised to be faster in a straight line then the AMR1, a problem which had greatly hindered it at Le Mans.

However Protech became bankrupt and was forced to close in February 1990 before the AMR2 could be completed, and with plans for an all-new AMR3 already in place. Aston Martin to dropped of motor racing due to the economic instability of the company at the time. It would be the last racing car produced by Aston Martin for fifteen years until the launch of the DBR9 in 2005.

Chassis

A total of five AMR1s were built, with four surviving today.

AMR1 #04 is currently used in the Historic Sportscar Racing series in North America while #05 is currently raced in Europe by owner Paul Whight and run by Cadena Motorsport.

Listed are all the race results from the 1989 season.

* AMR1 #01
** Destroyed in testing prior to Suzuka
* AMR1 #02
** Dijon - 18th
** Le Mans - 11th
* AMR1 #03
** Le Mans - DNF
* AMR1 #04
** Brands Hatch - 4th
** Nürburgring - 8th
** Donington - 6th
** Spa - DNF
* AMR1 #05 (upgraded to 6.3L V8)
** Donington - 7th
** Spa - 7th
** Mexico - 8th

References

* [http://wspr-racing.com/chassis/grc/ChassisAstonMartin.html Aston Martin chassis numbers]
* [http://www.astonmartins.com/racing/amr1.htm Aston Martin Picture Gallery - AMR1]
* [http://www.mulsannescorner.com/aston.html Mulsannes Corner technical analysis of AMR1]
* [http://www.groupcracing.com/cars/30 Group C Racing] - AMR1 #05


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