Prost to race Duster on ice

Posted on Author Keith Collantine

Dacia Duster 4x4, Trophee Andros, 2009
Dacia Duster 4x4, Trophee Andros, 2009

The Dacia range of cars isn’t sold here in Britain and the brand is probably best known for Top Gear’s running joke about James May’s fixation with its Sandero model.

But Renault is to give its economy brand a boost by entering it in the annual Trophee Andros ice-racing tournament in France – with four-times champion Alain Prost at the wheel.

Prost, who has more Grand Prix wins to his name than anyone bar Michael Schumacher, will campaign the amusingly-named Duster 4×4. It will be his seventh year in the competition, having raced for Toyota since 2003.

He has always finished in the championship top three, winning outright in 2006/7 and 2007/8. His association with Renault is well-known: he drove for them from 1981-1983, narrowly missing the championship in his final season which contributed to an acrimonious split from the team. He won his final title in a Renault-engined Williams in 1993.

While F1 waits to see if Renault will continue to compete in F1 in 2010 it’s interesting to read how the company justifies entering the competition in financially austere times:

The discipline also places a cap on excessively complex and costly technical solutions, while the chassis, gearbox and tyres, for example, are all carefully governed by the regulations, forcing teams to explore simple, ingenious solutions, an approach which totally fits the Dacia spirit.