Published on September 22nd, 2022 | by Subhash Nair0
Viper Niza Racing Partners Up With Aston Martin Racing Asia
Viper Niza Racing will work with Aston Martin Racing and conduct their customer racing programs.
Aston Martin Racing and Viper Niza Racing will be working hand in hand in the upcoming years. The Malaysian owned and Malaysian based racing team will be armed with the latest generation Vantage GT3 and GT4 cars to compete in the GT Sports Car classes regionally and internationally. Meanwhile, Viper Niza Racing will be managing and providing services for customer racing programs for Aston Martin regionally.
The Aston Martin Vantage GT3 is a direct replacement to the V12 Vantage GT3. It features the latest in race car technology, including a 4.0L V8 twin turbo engine capable of delivering 400kW and 700Nm of torque. The Aston Martin Vantage GT4 is modelled after the standard production Vantage with advanced aero and state of the art safety systems. Its 4.0L V8 twin turbo is tuned for 350kW and 550Nm of torque.
The Viper Niza Racing Vantage GT3 will make its debut in the Singapore F1 Grand Prix on 1-2 October 2022. Team owner, principal and driver Douglas Khoo will be competing in the TSS (Thailand Super Series) support race. The series features 2 25-minute sprint races around the Marina Bay Street Circuit.
Here’s the press release with more.
After an illustrious seven years of competing in the touring car and prototype classes, Viper Niza Racing today announced its partnership with Aston Martin Racing Asia which will see the Malaysian owned and based team arming itself with the latest generation and race-winning Vantage GT3 and GT4 cars to spearhead its regional and international racing campaign in the GT Sports Car class. As a partner team of Aston Martin Racing Asia, Viper Niza Racing will also be managing and providing services for customer racing programs.
The team will be led by owner, principal and driver Douglas Khoo and longtime endurance racing partner Dominic Ang. Both the Vantage GT3 and GT4 cars will carry on with Aston Martin Racing’s successful legacy in sports car racing, and is built upon the marque’s latest generation 4-litre V8 twin turbo Vantage.
The Vantage GT3 is a full-blown race car designed from the ground up and replaces Aston Martin’s most successful customer car the V12 Vantage GT3. It offers customers the latest in race car technology, embracing all the experiences from years of engineering and competing in international sports car racing. The car produces in excess of 400 kW of power and more than 700 Nm of torque. The Vantage GT4 meanwhile, is modeled after Aston Martin’s standard production Vantage sports car and is engineered for gentlemen drivers, giving customers and enthusiasts a direct and hard-edged race car with competitive package, advanced aerodynamics and state-of-the-art safety features that can be maintained by amateur teams. It is rated at more than 350 kW of power and more than 550 Nm of torque.
“Endurance racing has always been where our passion lies and we will continue to focus on long distance races as we have done previously in the TCR and Asian Le Mans Series. The TCR Seat Leon Cupra remains in our racing program moving forward, but sadly our time with the P3 LMP3 race car has come to its end as the car is no longer technically eligible to compete under current regulations,” said Khoo.
“Our time in the LMP3 race car has given us a wealth of experience and knowledge, and after so many great and memorable years of competing in this class, we feel that it is now the most opportune time to move on to the GT3 and GT4 sports car racing classes which has exponentially grown increasingly competitive over the recent years with the participation of the world’s top sports car manufacturers.”
The Viper Niza Racing Vantage GT3 will make its debut in the Singapore F1 Grand Prix on 1-2 October 2022 with Khoo competing in the TSS (Thailand Super Series) support race. The Series, which is the biggest in Thailand, features two 25-minute sprint races around the 5.063km Marina Bay Street Circuit on Saturday and Sunday and will be held for the first time in Singapore.
It will also feature a start-studded list of 27 international drivers from Singapore, Thailand, the Netherlands, Australia, USA, New Zealand, France, Hong Kong and Canada, competing in GT3/GTM and GTC supercars that include Toyota, Lexus, Audi, Porsche, Aston Martin, Mercedes-AMG, Bentley, Lamborghini, and Ford.
“Despite Singapore being a sprint race, it will provide us with much needed seat time to shakedown and familiarize ourselves with the new car. The plan moving forward however, will be to solely focus on endurance racing events.”
Immediate events lined up for the near future will include competing in another two rounds of the Thailand Super Series in October and December.
With 105 race starts, Khoo has captained Viper Niza Racing to compete in the 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 TCR Asia Series; the 2015 and 2016 TCR International Series; the 2016 and 2017 TCR Thailand Series; the 2019 TCR Asia International Series; the 2017, 2018 and 2019 Asian Le Mans Series; the 2017 and 2019 Blancpain GT Series; the 2019 Michelin Le Mans Cup and the 2015 and 2016 Sepang 12-Hour Endurance Race.
The team’s best accomplishment so far has come in the touring car series with a class win at the 2019 TCR SPA500 24-Hour endurance race in Belgium behind the wheel of a Seat Leon Cupra. Viper Niza also had the distinction of competing as a wildcard entry in the Malaysian round of the 2019 WTCR World Touring Car series.
In July this year, Viper Niza Racing competed in the 24 Hours of Portimão, Portugal, and just recently (11 September) finished sixth in the TCR Class of the Hankook 24 Hours of Barcelona in Spain with Khoo and Ang teaming up with two other drivers Gilbert Ang and Melvin Moh at the wheel of the team’s signature black and green Seat Leon Cupra.
Viper Niza Racing is also best known as the first all-Malaysian team to take part in the Road To Le Mans race in 2019, which is a pre-cursor to the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans, behind the wheel of its outgoing Nissan powered Ligier JS P3 LMP3 race car.
It has also competed in three successive seasons of the Asian Le Mans Series’ LMP3 class (2017/2018, 2018/2019, and 2019/2020 seasons) with the team securing pole position twice in the 2018/2019 season.
Meanwhile, elaborating on the Vantage GT4 Customer Racing Program, Aston Martin Racing Asia Director Weiron Tan commended Viper Niza Racing for the degree of commitment, professionalism and technical competency the team has invested in and demonstrated throughout its years of endurance racing.
“There’s no question that they (Viper Niza Racing) bring immense capabilities to this partnership together with Aston Martin Racing’s unparalleled customer racing support. We look forward to this new chapter of Viper Niza Racing and are extremely proud to be part of its journey. Customer racing is the backbone of sports car racing and there is no doubt we believe Viper Niza Racing has what it takes to do a good job and also be title contenders. We are there to provide support every step of the way,” said Tan.
Today, the Vantage GT3 and GT4 cars compete in more than 20 major international race series globally which includes countries like Australia, Japan and China in the Southeast Asian region.
In 2022, the Vantage GT3 took its first endurance race win at the IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship’s new top GT class in the United States. The Vantage GT3’s accomplishments include clinching its first major GT championship title in Japan when it won the 2021 Super Taikyu Series championship. The Vantage GT3 also raced to its first overall class victory in the 2019 TOTAL 24 Hours of Spa. That same year, the car went on to deliver the perfect score of a pole position, race win and fastest lap in the Donington Park round of the British GT Championship, as well as winning on its debut race in Japan at the opening round of the Japanese Super Taikyu Series. The Vantage GT3 has also recorded a glorious class victory in the 10-hour US endurance classic Petit Le Mans; and scored a podium finish in the 2018 Gulf 12 Hours race at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi.
The Vantage GT4 track record meanwhile, include racing to a victorious debut where it won its class in the 2019 ADAC TOTAL 24 Hours at the legendary Nurburgring Nordschleife circuit in Germany.