Le Mans: Davidson to compete for Aston in potential race-winner

By LJ Hutchins

CalendarThursday, May 21st, 2009

 
 

At last something on the race track has come good for Anthony Davidson – the former F1 pilot and BBC radio commentator is to drive for Aston Martin in this year’s 24 hours of Le Mans in June.

Aston, which announced earlier this year that it would be returning to Le Mans as a factory team in the LMP1 class, has just revealed that it will be fielding three cars – and has already said that it aims to compete for a win. Perhaps optimistically, perhaps not.

Aston chairman David Richards, no stranger to competitive racing, said in January this year: “We don’t have a lot of money… We’re doing this because we felt it right and properly British to have a go in the anniversary year of our historic win.”

Davidson will compete in the 008 car for the iconic race alongside Dutch F1 legend Jos Verstappen and British GT youngster Stuart Hall.

It is not his first entry in the race. He took part in 2003 for the Veloqx Prodrive Racing in a Ferrari – alongside former McLaren tester and sportscar specialist Darren Turner. Their car did not finish the race.

Also competing for Aston this year are Heinz-Harald Frentzen, Andrea Piccini and Karl Wendlinger in car 007, and David Brabham, Antonio Garcia and Davidson’s former Le Mans team-mate Turner in car 009.

The team has backed up Richards’ ambitious claim by winning the recent Le Mans Series endurance race at Spa-Francorchamps. But its major competitors Peugeot and Audi, both running the arguably superior diesel engine, were not present after pulling out from the European Le Mans Series.

Davidson was recently in the frame for a Le Mans Series drive in a Nissan GT-R being run by Gigawave Motorsport – the opportunity instead went to Turner and Germany’s Michael Krumm.

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