24 Hours of unceasing effort for Guillaume
A delighted Guillaume Moreau saw the chequered flag on his second outing in the famous Le Mans 24 Hours. The man from the Limousin region drove a fault-free race with Luc Alphand and Jerome Policand in the no.72 Corvette C6.R to finish 5th in the LM GT1 category.
Guillaume arrived straight from Silverstone and met up with the Luc Alphand Adventures team at the traditional scrutineering ceremony held in Les Jacobins in the centre of Le Mans. After passing scrutineering the team got down to the task of preparing for qualifying on Wednesday and Thursday evening.
During these sessions the drivers in no.72 never went for a flyer preferring to concentrate on the race. "As being a bit higher up the grid has no bearing on the final result, we decided to optimise the chassis set-up and trained for refuelling stops. There were a lot of accidents during practice and we spent less running time on the track than we'd estimated. Nonetheless, we were happy with the Corvette at the end of qualifying."
Jerome Policand set the qualifying time and also took the start at 15h00 in front of 258 500 spectators and Francois Fillon, the French prime minister, who made a point of saying hello to the Le Mans-based team. The Corvette respected its strategy right from the flag, and began a long chase in the wake of the works Aston Martins and Corvettes.
Guillaum'e first taste of the track came at 16h30 when he went out for a double stint. He was back in the car again for a triple stint as dusk enveloped the Sarthe circuit, and his third appearance came at 03h45 just when it began to rain.
In these very difficult conditions Guillaume put on an awesome display. "I again triple-stinted until 06h20. Track conditions were very tricky and I was capable of matching the pace of the works cars. I was either quicker than them or setting around the same times. When Heinz-Harald Frentzen's Aston Martin ran into a problem I got up to fourth in the category!"
Guillaume drove the car again twice, and he had the honour of crossing the finishing line. "Up till the end it wasn't easy. It began to rain again not long before the finish but this time not on all the circuit. In front of the pits the track was soaking wet, and it was dry at the other end. I decided to stay out on slicks and that meant we didn't have to make an additional stop. It felt really extraordinary to cross the finishing line, especially as we had achieved our objective!"
Guillaume reckoned that his 5th place in GT1 was the best result possible. "All the cars were reliable and there were no upsets in our category. We drove our race at our own pace and we finished where we expected, first of the privateers. The Luc Alphand Adventures team deserves a big pat on the back; it has always brought its cars home to the finish in the Le Mans 24 Hours. Once again we didn't run into any problems that could have cost us time. Again, I'd like to underline the welcome offered by our team, which enabled our partners to live the race in exceptional conditions."
Guillaume's next rendezvous: the Formula Renault 3.5 Series in Budapest on 5th/6th July and the Le Mans Series on the Nurburgring on 16th/17th August.
-credit: guillaume moreau