Mateusz Lisowski: "Only factory drive can keep me racing"

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Motorsport.com contributor Piotrek Magdziarz got the opportunity to talk with Blancpain Sprint Series WRT Audi driver Mateusz Lisowski last weekend at Brands Hatch.

Mateusz Lisowski stepped up to the Blancpain Sprint Series this year and immediately proved to be a revelation. During the season-opener at Nogaro the #4 WRT Audi he shares with Vincent Abril finished excellent third overall. At Brand Hatch the pair of youngsters delivered another solid performance, bringing the car home in sixth place. Not to mention so far there is no match for them in the Silver Cup category.

#4 Belgian Audi Club Team WRT Audi R8 LMS Ultra: Mateusz Lisowski, Vincent Abril
#4 Belgian Audi Club Team WRT Audi R8 LMS Ultra: Mateusz Lisowski, Vincent Abril

Photo by: Brecht Decancq Photography

Your debut in the Blancpain Endurance Series exceeded expectations. Hardly anyone would have betted on you finishing on the podium. Did you expect such a result yourself?

"Certainly I didn't expect that. It was a great surprise to me. We aimed to be in the top ten, but it turned out we ended up on the podium. It was nice, It was the perfect Audi track. We could spread our wings and show what we're capable of."

It is typical on the GT racing scene that drivers race different cars in different series on different weekends. Has anyone been on the phone yet?

"No. There was no phone calls. We're in Poland and we need to understand Polish reality. If I'd been a football player and scored against Real, then I would have received phone calls for sure."

Does your contract allow you to race cars other than Audi?

"In general yes. I can race different cars in different series, because – as for now – I'm not a factory driver and I can drive whatever I like."

Last year you took part in the Volkswagen Castrol Cup series. Compared to Audi these cars are words apart. How did you adapt this year?

"It wasn't easy for sure, as Audi has twice the power, but I've already tested these cars before. I like them a lot and I feel comfortable in them, so the leap wasn't really that big. Obviously I had to adjust the speed and adapt myself, but, in general, I didn't feel an incredible difference or that I wasn't coping for example."

You mentioned testing other cars — did those experiences made the change easier?

Mateusz Lisowski
Mateusz Lisowski

Photo by: Brecht Decancq Photography

"Certainly it was a lot of help and I wasn't a complete newbie, when entering this series. I've done some testing, I had also driven in the Porsche Supercup for half the year, where although I didn't do too well, I've gained experience that is paying off now. I'm still getting experience and I think from the half point of the season, at the tracks that I know, I can show my best again."

Do you prefer GT's over touring cars then?

"I feel really great in GT cars. They're a lot of fun. They're very fast and you can feel the downforce. Touring cars are a bit boring, because they're slow."

What is so specifically tricky in the Porsche Supercup? Quite often established drivers with big names seem to struggle there.

"Surely the car. It's very difficult, especially the model I used to drive. Now those races are a lot easier. The heel-and-toe, that I had to master, caused me great difficulty. I hadn't tested too much. I just jumped in mid-season, I wasn't mentally prepared and motivated, so it was difficult to deliver a result."

In 2011 you won the prestigious Volkswagen Scirocco R-Cup.

"And there was no phone call then either."

Such a success should propel a career rather than scale it down.

"Some German teams expressed interest, but everywhere you have to pay. Unfortunately that's the reality and this sport is for very wealthy people. There's a level up to which you can pay. After you need to retire, find a sponsor or become a factory driver. I'm heading for the third one, as that's the only option that can keep me racing."

Last year there was a couple of serious accidents in GT's. Allan Simonsen and Sean Edwards lost their lives. Do you think there is a lot to do to improve safety?

"I think so, because the technology is constantly developing. Obviously there are points where after a touch a car falls apart like a puzzle. Every car has points like that but it can always be reduced. That said, in the end the driver doesn't think about it."

The first one you always have to beat is your team-mate. How is your relationship with Vincent Abril?

"There is a rivalry, because there has to be one — that propels the entire team. So far, I've managed to be faster, but we work together for a common goal."

Where would you like to be in few years time?

"That's a hard question, cause I like the DTM, I really like GT's and also I really like rallying."

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Series BSS
Article type Interviews
Tags audi, blancpain, bss, mateusz lisowski, porsche supercup

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