PROTON will be looking for more high-flying results with the Satria in 2011
PROTON Motorsports will start its 2011 programme of events with next month’s Monte Carlo Rally, where regular driver Chris Atkinson will be joined by P-G Andersson.
Two-time FIA Junior World Rally Champion Andersson (Sweden) brings plenty of experience to the PROTON Motorsports, having previously driven for the Suzuki and Ford World Rally Teams.
While confirming its drivers for the January 19-22 Intercontinental Rally Challenge opener, PROTON can also confirm it will contest 10 rounds of the IRC and the full FIA Asia-Pacific Rally Championship with the Satria Neo S2000.
In addition to Atkinson and Andersson, Scotsman Alister McRae will remain with the Malaysian manufacturer for next season, contesting the APRC series and selected rounds of the IRC.
For now though, all eyes are on the French Alps and the forthcoming Monte Carlo Rally. Next year’s rally will be one of the most eagerly anticipated events in the motorsporting calendar as the world’s oldest rally celebrates its centenary year. First run in 1911, the 2011 itinerary poses a considerably tougher challenge than it did 100 years ago.
Starting from Valence, in the heart of the Ardeche region, next month’s event will take crews through the stages which have built the legend of this rally down the years. And, just when the competitors think the event can’t get any tougher, they arrive at the overnight final loop which takes them over the classic Col de Turini – a stretch of road which has caused more than its fair share of upset, intrigue and delight in equal measure. And it’s before the passionate and frenzied fans on top of the Turini that PROTON aims to deliver its first result of the season.
PROTON is already building new Satria Neo S2000s for next season, with the test car already heading south for the Alps to start testing with Atkinson and Andersson early next week.