Arnaud Martin, the man acclaimed with the design of the 1.6-litre turbocharged engine that helped power the RML Chevrolet team to a crushing 1-2-3 in the 2011 World Touring Car Championship season, has been recognised for his efforts in creating the outfit’s bespoke powerplant.
Martin, the team’s Chief Engineer, was bestowed the title of ‘Race Engine Designer of the Year’ by Race Tech magazine, beating fellow finalists who included Renault F1 technical director Rob White, Audi’s head of sport engine technology Ulrich Baretzky and Peugeot’s Le Mans engine director François Coudrain.
The recognition is fitting, given RML’s utter dominance of proceedings in last year’s championship.
The cars, driven full-time by Yvan Muller, Rob Huff and Alain Menu, claimed pole position at every race meeting, along with 21 out of a possible 24 wins that year.
The team beat off competition from three other carmaker’s new turbocharged engines, including SUNRED’s Lehmann-designed turbo engine, along with the turbocharged powerplants developed by BMW and Volvo.
“I am honoured and truly grateful that our work has been recognised and I thank Chevrolet and my team at RML for all their support, hard work and dedication,” Martin said when he received the award.
“We spent eight intense months designing and building the 2011 1.6 litre turbocharged engine for the Chevrolet Cruze. In order to meet the parameters set by the FIA, we had to reach a higher level of performance than that of 2010.”
“ur warmest congratulations to Arnaud and his team for this prestigious and well deserved award,” added Chevrolet’s motorsport manager Eric Nève.
“Chevrolet has strongly believed in the 1.6 turbo engine project, an exciting technical challenge conducted in a very professional manner. It has produced terrific results on the track and great benefits for the entire Chevrolet brand.”
[Image via FIA WTCC Media]