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Aston Martin “On Target” With Valkyrie Development

Development phase with AMR Pro mule car completed; LMH rollout set for June…

Photo: Aston Martin

Aston Martin is “on target” with the development of the Valkyrie, having completed its development phase with an AMR Pro test mule ahead of an unchanged second quarter rollout for its V12-powered LMH car.

Adam Carter, the British marque’s head of endurance motorsport, revealed that Aston Martin capped off the multi-month initial development phase with the AMR Pro with a two-day test at the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve in Portimao.

That came after initial testing at Silverstone, with the complete schedule encompassing “about a thousand kilometres.”

Carter told reporters gathered at the third round of the FIA World Endurance Championship at Spa that the initial development phase is “all but finished” with the possible exception of a few minor systems and electronics tests.

“We got the answers we needed to, so there’s no need to take it all out until we start running the LMH car later this year,” Carter said.

When it comes to the rollout for the LMH car, Carter noted that Aston Martin is sticking to its previously communicated goal of shaking down the car in the latter stages of the second quarter.

“It’s on target,” said Carter. “Like all racing programs, it’s always tight because you push the things along.

“We’ll look to start running [in] the very back end of the second quarter to shakedown and then start track testing basically in July.”

While Carter declined to go into specifics on the testing plan with regards to timelines and locations, he indicated that initial testing will take place with a single chassis before adding a second car “in the latter part of the year.”

Since the Heart of Racing Team-led Valkyrie effort will encompass both the WEC and IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, Carter said that the testing work will take on a split setup as development progresses.

“We’ll be focusing around one test car and the program to start with in Europe and then once we get over a certain threshold milestone we’ll then start to split the cars,” he said.

“So we’ll put one testing in the U.S., one in Europe.”

While the WEC team is set to operate out of the U.K., operations for the WeatherTech Championship squad are set to be based out of Phoenix.

Multimatic, meanwhile, remains a part of the program through a base in Brackley, although Carter stressed that the firm is “just a service provider.”

“They are not the race team, they’re just a service provider.

“So they’re part of the chassis program but the race team is Heart of Racing, same as in the U.S.”

Aston Martin “to Adapt as Necessary” to Two-Car Hypercar Mandate

Aston Martin’s entry into the WEC Hypercar category is set to coincide with a potential mandate for manufacturers to field two cars starting in 2025, as to be decided shortly.

The introduction of such a rule would have an impact on Aston Martin, which stated that Heart of Racing would run ‘at least one’ Valkyrie both in WEC and the WeatherTech Championship.

Carter indicated that Aston Martin would be prepared to support a multi-car presence in WEC, should a two-car mandate be instituted.

“We fully support what WEC is doing,” he said.

“If you look at the championship, it’s grown. We’re committed to the Hypercar program and we’ll review what comes in the regulations and we’ll have to adapt as necessary.”

Carter declined to go into further detail about how a two-car effort would look and whether or not Heart of Racing would run both cars, stating that “it would be speculation at this point until the regulations.”

Should a two-car mandate be instituted, however, Carter assured that this will not have an effect on the WeatherTech Championship program, where Aston Martin remains committed to a single-car GTP effort.

Davey Euwema is Sportscar365's European Editor. Based in The Netherlands, Euwema covers the FIA World Endurance Championship, European Le Mans Series and Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS, among other series.

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