Motorsport.com spoke with Loic Duval about what happened to cause his crash at the end of the third hour.
No.8 Audi R18 e-tron driver Loic Duval has exclusively told Motorsport.com about the moment he came upon slower GT cars at Indianapolis and was pitched in to the Armco – badly damaging his car and significantly denting his chances of fighting for victory.
Marshals have priority
“Basically I was in the beginning of the lap and they told me on the radio there was a slow zone at Indianapolis,” Duval told Motorsport.com. “When I got to Mulsanne I got the information on the radio that the track was clear, no more slow zone.
"So I arrived in to Indianapolis and the screens where the marshals are is flashing yellow, but the actual marshals were waving green flags, which we all know from the drivers briefings means the marshals have priority.
“So having seen the green flag and had the information I was doing my lap as usual and then at that point head some guys stop ahead of me and were side by side and I had nowhere to go. “
Duval believes that some drivers failed to heed the advice of Race Director Eduardo Freitas at last weeks’ drivers briefing, when drivers were told that the marshal’s flag signals had priority over flashing warning lights at marshal’s posts.
“Basically I think one stopped and then some slowed and went side by side and for me there was no more space and arriving at high speed,” Duval continued.
GTE traffic was confused
“The green flag had been deployed for some seconds so they (the GT cars) must have gone past them. I don’t know if some guys did not listen in the briefing but maybe it was confusing because the light was flashing but as I say when the marshal shows the green flag they have the priority.
“I think we have been really unlucky because we cannot forecast this and what can we do?”
Duval went on to state that the Audi Sport Team Joest squad is happy with the pace shown in the first four hours of the race despite a slight delay for the No.7 car with a puncture and his own incident.
“We are there (on pace),” said Duval. “The performance is good in the car and over stints. We will get better and better as the race goes on.”
Duval drove the car back to the pits and in an incredible turnaround, the car was back in the race in just four minutes and 12 seconds, just one lap back of the leaders.