A DUBAI DEBUT FOR THE MERCEDES AMG GT3

RAM Racing finished the 2016 Dubai 24 Hours in 11th place in class after a challenging but promising debut for its new Mercedes AMG GT3.

The team qualified in eighth for the start of the 2016 24H Series championship-opener and by nightfall had climbed up to third place. With its sights set on taking the race lead, the team was pushing hard. However, a cracked oil cooler put halt on their charge and, after an hour in the garage, they emerged in 58th place.

Not a team to stop fighting, RAM Racing pushed hard though the night and, as the chequered flag fell, they were 11th in the top-level PRO class.

"Although the race didn't go to plan, the new AMG GT3 showed a lot of promise," commented Team Principal Dan Shufflebottom. "The drivers all reported better handling in the corners and the team have found it easy to engineer and set-up. Obviously, like with any new car, we had some issues that prevented us from getting a better result but the service from AMG Customer Sports was, once again, second-to-none.

"The car is being flown back to Silverstone Park, via AMG in Germany, so we can start getting ready for the 12 Hours of Italy. Now, more than ever, we need to make sure we take maximum points from every round of the championship if we want to retain our 2015 title."

The 12 Hours of Italy, the second round of the 24H Series, takes place at Mugello in North Italy on 18-19 March.

WEC stars join RAM Racing for 2016 24H Series

RAM Racing has announced its 2016 24H Series driver line-up and welcomes FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) stars Stuart Hall (GB) and Roald Goethe (DE) to the team, which will run a brand new Mercedes AMG GT3.

Winners of the 2013 WEC GTE Am class, Hall and Goethe, will first join 2015 24H Series GT3 class-champions, RAM Racing, for the opening round of the championship, Dubai 24 Hours, next weekend. RAM Racing regulars Thomas Jäger (DE), Tom Onslow-Cole (GB) and Paul White (GB) will make up the line-up.

Team Principal Dan Shufflebottom said: “We’re pleased to welcome Roald and Stuart into the team. They are both very experienced endurance racers with a fantastic working relationship. They have the right attitude for RAM Racing and we think they will integrate into the team very well.”

Shufflebottom says a podium is required in every race if the team wants to retain its 2016 title.

“We finished Dubai 24 Hours in second place last year, so we aim to go there and go one better this year,” he continued. “Last year, in the 24H Series’ six rounds, we had a win, four second places and a third, and that was only just enough to take the class title. Our driver line-up is very strong but, as we all know, winning these races is about keeping out of trouble and never dropping a ball.”

Goethe and Hall first raced together in Dubai 24 Hours in 2012 and have been a formidable partnership ever since, most notably racing together for Aston Martin Racing’s works team.

“We’re looking forward to joining RAM Racing for 2016,” commented Goethe. “They have proven they can win races and championships and so have we. Together, we should be able to have some great success this season.”

Next weekend’s race will be the first time the pair have driven the new Mercedes AMG GT3 but Hall is confident they’ll have no issues in learning it ahead of the race.

“It’s a new car for us, but I’ve heard it’s very easy to drive,” commented Hall. “Roald and I have both driven a wide range of racing machinery so we’re used to jumping into anything and getting on with it. Dubai is a track we both know well and we’re hoping to be up on the podium come the end of the race.”

Dubai 24 Hours starts at 1600hrs on Friday 15 January and fans in the UK can watch on MotorsTV or on the live stream at www.24hseries.com. Radio Le Mans will also broadcast throughout at www.radiolemans.com

24H Series Calendar

Dubai 24 Hours: 14-16 January
12 Hours of Italy: 18-19 March
Zandvoort 12 Hours: 6-7 May
24 Hours of Paul Ricard: 15-17 July
Barcelona 24 Hours: 2-4 September
12 Hours of Brno: 14-15 October
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