The countdown for Nogaro has started on Sébastien Loeb Racing

Sébastien Loeb, who knows the Nogaro circuit, having won there in Formula France before going on to collect nine World Rally championships, will be starting a new adventure.

Sébastien Loeb Racing is only a few days away from the start of its second season of racing. After a third place in the French GT Championship and the grand slam in Porsche Carrera Cup France in its first year of existance, the Alsacian team is taking on its first international competition, the FIA GT Series.

In keeping with its motto "as high as possible, as quickly as possible," Sébastien Loeb Racing has combined all the ingredients necessary to face top-flight competition and aim for the top positions.

The right puzzle pieces fitting into place…

Sébastien Loeb Racing McLaren MP4-12C GT3
Sébastien Loeb Racing McLaren MP4-12C GT3

Photo by: XPB Images

In putting their faith in two McLaren MP4-12C, the team chose both a prestigious constructor and one of the best performing GT3 cars available, with technology directly derived from the British company’s F1 involvement.

As for the drivers, the Soultz-Sous-Forêts based team will also have top references in the discipline with Andréas Zuber / Mike Parisy in the #10 and Alvaro Parente joining Sébastien Loeb in the #9. All four know the car well, having either driven it under race conditions, to a podium finish (Sébastien Loeb at Paul Ricard) or taken part in its development (Alvaro Parente).

With these key factors in hand, Sébastien Loeb Racing is well armed to do battle with the top teams in the series starting at the first round of the FIA GT Series, which will take place during the traditional « Easter Cup » at Nogaro.

The first important test of the weekend will come in the form of qualifying (Saturday, March 31 at 3:15p.m.), divided into three sessions, and will determine the grid for the qualifying race.

The results of this first race of the season, run on Sunday, April 1 at 2:15p.m., will set the order for the championship race, scheduled for Easter Monday at the same time.

Sébastien Loeb’s new challenge !

Sébastien Loeb, who knows the Nogaro circuit, having won there in Formula France before going on to collect nine World Rally championships, will be starting a new adventure.

Nogaro will be the first race of his first full season on circuits. "I did ten years of rallying in the World Championship and after winning nine titles, I felt like a change, to see something else and to discover a new world. For me it’s a bit like starting over: I have a lot to learn.

It’s a different style of driving against experienced drivers on their turf. People expect results from me so there is a certain amount of pressure. It’s a new challenge and to be discovering a new car and a new way of working all at once makes it even more motivating and exciting."

After a very busy off-season, with several test sessions under his belt, the Alsacian driver is readying himself for what Nogaro will show.

"I chose a teammate who is one of the best in GT. Potentially, Alvaro could be quicker but that’s also why I chose to share the car with him : to have a top reference in GT to compare myself to and to progress.

I’m looking forward to Nogaro. Nobody will be able to hide their game anymore and we will finally see where we fit in compared to the competition, the team and I. It’s a big first, so we must also be patient. We are still in a discovery phase and we will grow during the season."

"Everything is in place for a good result"

In the sister car, Andreas Zuber is also excited to see what the first meeting will bring : "I can’t wait to get things going at Nogaro ! We are very well prepared and it feels good. I think that we will have a solid showing.

Mike and I perform well together, we know each other well and we’ve been teammates before. I already know the track, having been there last year.

It’s an interesting place, not very quick, but that I like nonetheless. Everything is in place for a good result and to score points. "

Whether it’s with Sébastien Loeb and Alvaro Parente behind the wheel of the #9 McLaren or it’s Mike Parisy and Andreas Zuber at the controls of the #10, it’s certain that Sébastien Loeb Racing is determined to make a success out of their debut. Those first answers will come on Friday with free practice.

Sébastien Loeb Racing

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Blancpain Sprint
Drivers Sébastien Loeb , Alvaro Parente , Andreas Zuber , Mike Parisy
Teams Sébastien Loeb Racing
Article type Preview
Tags fia-gt, loeb, mclaren, nogaro, parente, parisy, zuber