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Racer Sideways Aston Martin Vantage GTE Le Mans 2019
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Racer Sideways SWCAR05A ASV GTE No.95 Le Mans 2019 - Nicki Thiim, Marco Sorensen & Darren Turner. RRP £74.95
Racer Sideways SWCAR05B ASV GTE No.97 Le Mans 2019 - Alex Lynn, Jonny Adam & Maxime Martin. RRP £74.95
Racer Sideways SWCAR05K ASV GT3/E White Kit. RRP £62.95

The new Racer Sideways Aston Martin Vantage (or 'ASV') is due to arrive soon. The first two liveries are the pair of Aston Martin Racing GTE Pro cars that raced at the 2019 Le Mans 24 Hours. There'll also be a white kit released at the same time, confirming that the Racer Sideways Aston model will represent both the GTE and GT3 versions of the Vantage. In real life, the GTE can be converted to GT3 specs relatively easily - a feature that has been exploited by privateers such as TF Sport to run their Astons in the World Endurance Championship, ELMS, IMSA GTLM as well as numerous GT3 championships.

The choice of 2019 and Le Mans is a very good one - marking the sixtieth anniversary of Aston Martin's only overall win at La Sarthe...



The '59' anniversary decals are prominent on the Sideways model...

       

The works Aston Martin Racing team entered three Aston Martin Vantages in the 2019 Le Mans 24 Hours - two of the new 2018 models in GTE Pro and one older car in GTE Am. The lead car was the #95 driven by Nicki Thiim, Marco Sørensen and Darren Turner. Sørensen qualified the #95 in pole position for the LMGTE Pro class with a 3:48.000 lap. The early stages of the race saw Thiim lead the GTE Pro train...



Somewhat hampered by a post-qualifying Balance of Performance tweak, the Aston Martins struggled to keep on terms with the class leading Porsche and Ferrari as the race progressed into the evening and darkness. Pushing hard during the ninth hour, Sørensen crashed out of twelfth place in class on the entry to Indianapolis...



That was the end of their race, leaving the #97 car to carry Aston Martin's hopes in LMGTE Pro...

       

The less-experienced trio of Maxime Martin, Alexander Lynn and Jonny Adam hadn't had the best of weeks. Lynn qualified two seconds off the pole-sitting #95 car, enough for only 42nd place overall and 14th in LMGTE Pro. Alex Lynn was driving at just after midnight when he lost control of the car in the Porsche Curves, hitting the barrier and damaging the car. He limped the short distance back to the pits and fifty minutes of repairs - dropping the car from 39th place overall to 54th. It was a devastating hour for Aston Martin Racing, who'd already lost their GTE Am car in the sixth hour. A reasonably trouble-free run through the second half of the race saw the #97 car finish in 44th place overall and 13th place in GTE Pro - hardly the result Aston Martin were hoping for in the anniversary year of their 1959 victory.

       

The Sideways mould looks pretty good - and much more convincing than the undecorated prototype images - capturing the lines of the car and including that massive rear diffuser. The base colour of the AMR livery is the correct yellow of 2019, as opposed to the pale green of the new car's debut in 2018. It may just be the photographs, but I would like to see the yellows, reds and greens far more vivid. The red stripes along the bottom side edges of both cars are correct, but should be a little thinner.

   

The chassis layout is the same as the other Racer Sideways GT cars - the 17k Baby Raptor motor in an anglewinder pod. The 17.3mm wheels are plastic at the front and aluminium at the back.

This is an exciting release from Racer Sideways - a great choice of livery to start the ball rolling. There's huge scope for more stunning liveries on GT3 and GTE cars, but I wonder if the sheer volume of new GT models in the pipeline might distract the company from fully developing the Aston Martin range?

The two ASV models and white kit are available to pre-order at Pendle Slot Racing now.
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