Ram Racing will make its return to competitive racing next month when it contests Dubai 24 Hours in its brand new Mercedes SLS AMG GT3 with professional drivers Thomas Jäger (DE), Adam Christodoulou (GB) and Tom Onslow-Cole (GB) and gentleman driver Cheerag Arya (IN).
The team, best known for its 2013 European Le Mans Series LMGTE championship win, took delivery of the new 6.2-litre V8 machine ahead of the 24H Series season-opener and British professional racing driver Onslow-Cole tested it at Silverstone Circuit and, alongside Arya, at Dubai Autodrome in preparation for the race.
“The car feels great,” he commented. “I’ve driven most GT3 cars now and this is definitely one of the easiest to get to grips with. The track time at Silverstone was probably more valuable for me as I got to put the car through its paces but the Dubai test definitely benefitted Cheerag. In just a few laps he went four seconds faster than his previous track record thanks to various factors including personal improvement, a clear track and the new tyre from Hankook.”
36-year old Arya, who resides in Dubai, is experienced at the track and contested the race last year in the team’s Ferrari 458 GT3.
Joining them in the car are Christodoulou, who is no stranger to the series having won Barcelona 24 Hours outright, and AMG factory driver Jäger, who were both selected by the team because of their SLS experience and GT racing success.
“We wanted to pull together a team that we feel could win the race overall and I’m confident that we have done that,” commented Ram Racing’s team principal Dan Shufflebottom. “It’s a competitive field but our professionals are among the best, Cheerag is experienced here and our team is made up of the industry’s best so, as long as everything goes to plan on the day, we’ve got a good chance of success.”
This will be the first competition for the team since it contested the world-famous 24 Hours of Le Mans, the third round of the FIA World Endurance Championship, earlier this year.
“It’s no secret that we experienced a few set-backs this year but that happens in motor racing,” commented Shufflebottom. “You just have to pick yourself up and keep on going. Fortunately, we managed to retain a very strong core team at Ram Racing who will be with us in Dubai and for the 2015 season. We will hopefully be able to make an announcement about our future plans following the race.”
The Dubai 24 Hours takes place on Friday 9 January at 1400hrs.