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Ray_Mallock_Ltd

Ray Mallock Ltd.

Ray Mallock Ltd., also known as RML, is a motorsports racing team and engineering company. In 2007, RML is engaged in the Le Mans Series under its own name and the World Touring Car Championship as the works Chevrolet team.

Early history

Ray Mallock began building racing cars, alongside his brother Richard, as an assistant to his father, Major Arthur Mallock, who built several Mallock U2 chassis for Clubmans racing. After racing in Formula 3 and sports car racing, Mallock founded his team, Ray Mallock Atlantic Racing, in 1979, which he renamed RML in 1984.

Sports car racing

A driver for Viscount Downe Racing, Ray Mallock helped develop the privateer Aston Martin-powered Nimrod NRA/C2 for Group C regulations in the World Endurance Championship in 1983 and 1984. In 1985, RML was contracted to build the Ecurie Ecosse prototypes for the C2 class, winning the class title in 1986.

In 1987 RML returned to the main class by developing the Aston Martin AMR-1. The project was closed in 1990, but Mallock found work with the works Nissan team instead.

The World Sportscar Championship ended after the 1992, and it wouldn't be until 1999 that RML returned to this category by producing the Mallock Clubmans car for Mallock Sports, his brother Richard's company. In 2000, RML engineered the Saleen S7 supercar into a competition model, the S7-R, winning the European Le Mans Series in the GT1 class in 2001 and the Spanish GT Championship overall in 2002. In 2004 RML entered the FIA GT Championship with two cars.

Also in 2004, RML ran an MG-Lola EX257 in the Le Mans 24 Hours and Le Mans Endurance Series. After the design became obsolete with the onset of new LMP2 regulations, RML merged components from the EX257 into the Lola B05/40's chassis and bodyshell, creating the MG-Lola EX264, which won Le Mans in the LMP2 class in 2005 and 2006.

The team's car was further upgraded for the 2008 Le Mans Series season, using a new XP21 motor developed by MG, and renaming the car EX265. This car was then replaced before the season finale by a coupe bodystyle, based on the new Lola B08/80. Using componants of the EX265, including the MG XP21 motor, the new car was christened the EX265C, and made its debut at the 2008 1000km of Silverstone.

Touring car racing

Taking advantage of his relationship to Ecurie Ecosse, RML made its debut in touring car racing in 1992, by moving to the British Touring Car Championship. The team ran two ex-works Vauxhall Cavaliers for Ecurie Ecosse for two years, and due to the car's success, it was awarded with the works deal in 1994, winning the championship the following year with the brand new Vauxhall Vectra. Meanwhile, RML built the works Nissan Sentra for the South African Touring Car Championship.

RML's association with Nissan grew in 1997 with the team building the Nissan Primera for the BTCC. The team won the Drivers Championship in 1999, along with the manufacturers and teams titles in 1998 & 1999. In 2004, SEAT Sport UK acquired two SEAT Toledo Cupras, which RML campaigned in the BTCC, but at the end of the year the partnership was dissolved when the team won the contract to run the Chevrolet Lacetti in the WTCC the following year.

Rallying

At the end of 1997, GM Europe decided to cut down its involvement in touring cars, and RML went with them to the develop the Opel Astra Kit-car for the Formula 2 regulations in the World Rally Championship and several national rallying championships in Europe. In 1999, the RML Astra won titles in Germany, Norway and Sweden.

In late 2000 Opel assigned RML to design and build the Opel Corsa for the new Super 1600 category, which replaced the F2 kit-cars. The car made its competition debut in the 2002 JWRC class of the Monte Carlo Rally and its first title the following year.

Other series

In 2002, RML developed the ASCAR stock car, based on ARCA-type racing, winning the 2002 and 2003 titles with Nicolas Minassian and Ben Collins. Also in 2002, RML prepared Darren Manning's Team St. George car for the British Champ Car race at the Rockingham race track.

Road cars

RML's engineering skills were used in road-going cars for the first time in 1990, when the company built a small number of Ford GT40 replicas. In 1994, RML created several concept sketches for an undisclosed Japanese manufacturer.

In 1999, RML returned with two different projects, the Opel Astra Concept DTM, a road-going prototype based on the Opel Astra Coupé the German company would debut the following year, and the Saleen S7, which was completely designed by RML's engineer and former F1 mechanic, Richard Owen.

In 2003, Nissan ordered a prototype based on the new Nissan Micra, powered by a V6 engine and called Micra R. The car debuted in the Geneva Auto Show. The car had a 6-speed sequential gearbox.

References

External links

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