After a gap of 61 years, Aston Martin has announced that it will return to the pinnacle of motorsport with a factory Formula 1 team. Aston Martin will become the sixth car manufacturer to have a factory-backed works team in Formula 1 when it makes its return in 2021. Aston Martin will not enter as a brand new 11th team, but instead, the Racing Point F1 Team will be rebranded as Aston Martin F1 Team after the 2020 season.
The Silverstone based outfit, Racing Point is owned by Lawrence Stroll, father of Canadian F1 driver Lance Stroll. Lawrence Stroll recently acquired a significant stake at Aston Martin, saving the company from financial distress. Now with Stroll owning Aston Martin along with Racing Point, it was speculated that this was a possibility, but now, the venture has been given the green light and Aston Martin is ready to go racing in Formula 1 from next year. As far as engine supplier goes, It is unclear at the moment if Aston Martin will develop its own engine as it recently announced a hybrid V6 for its road car, the Valhalla, but with Racing Point already using Mercedes-AMG powertrain, and Daimler already in bed with Aston Martin, there is a possibility that the Aston Martin F1 Team could continue to use the Mercedes powertrain.
Racing Point on its official site stated “On Monday 30th of March, the shareholders of Aston Martin Lagonda approved a £536m fundraising, underpinned by an injection of £260m of new capital from Yew Tree Consortium – a group of investors led by Lawrence Stroll. As part of this investment, Mr Stroll will become Executive Chairman of Aston Martin and Aston Martin will create its own works F1 racing team. There is no better way to build the Aston Martin brand globally, and to engage with its customer base than to have a successful works team in Formula 1. ”
Lawrence Stroll stated “Aston Martin has been competing very successfully in various classes of motorsport throughout its history, but we now have an opportunity to create a works team in Formula 1. The global spotlight of Formula 1 is second to none and we will leverage this reach to showcase the Aston Martin brand in our key markets.”
He added “With the Aston name comes more pressure and expectation. We will need to be competitive from the outset. But I have no doubt the team at Silverstone will rise to the challenge and do the Aston Martin name proud.”
The new Aston Martin F1 Team will design and engineering their car and the innovations will be shared with the engineering and development teams at Gaydon for the further development of Aston Martin road cars. In particular their upcoming range of mid-engined models.
After Ferrari, Mercedes, Alfa Romeo, Renault and McLaren, Aston Martin will be the sixth factory-backed works team of a car manufacturer to race in Formula 1 next year. Even though Aston Martin and Redbull have collaborated in designing and engineering Aston’s next generation of cars like the Valkyrie and the Valhalla mid-engined supercars and is currently the title sponsor for the Redbull Racing F1 Team, this relationship would come to an end at the end of this year.
Earlier, Aston Martin had announced that it would race in the LeMans Hypercar (LMH) category of the World Endurance Championship with a specially designed version of the upcoming Valkyrie hypercar. However, as some of the valkyrie’s specs would not meet the expected regulations and the recent takeover of the company, that decision was put on the backburner, as Stroll has decided to concentrate all efforts towards the F1 factory team.
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