Faultless performance from Tiago Monteiro in Le Mans 24HR Last weekend, Tiago Monteiro realized his dream, to return to the Le Mans 24 hr, and for the first time in his career, take part in the most prestigious category, LMP1. Ten years after...
Faultless performance from Tiago Monteiro in Le Mans 24HR
Last weekend, Tiago Monteiro realized his dream, to return to the Le Mans 24 hr, and for the first time in his career, take part in the most prestigious category, LMP1. Ten years after his first appearance in this magnificent king of endurance races, the Portuguese driver adapted fantastically to the Oreca 01 and carried out two stints without error. His lap times continually matched the team's expectations but on his return to the car, Tiago was unable to enjoy the pleasure of taking the chequered flag because his teammates, Stephane Ortelli and Bruno Senna, had suffered several off track excursions, eventually damaging the TEAM Oreca Matmut Aim no.10 enough to call a halt to their race.
Nevertheless, Tiago has given a positive assessment of his return to the Le Mans 24 hr. "It was a great experience. It was my third time at the Le Mans 24hr but the first time in the LMP1 category. Our car was excellent and gave me similar sensations to F1. Obviously, it is frustrating not to get to the end of the 24 hours, but Stephane Oretelli and Bruno Senna had incidents, it happens in racing. As for me, my performance was good and I am satisfied with my lap times but I still have a lot of room for improvement. I loved spending two weeks or so with Team Oreca. Our relationship is excellent, so is the new one I made with two drivers I did not know beforehand. After this successful comeback I am keen to repeat the experience! The final result does not reflect our competitiveness, but you have to accept race hazards and the most important thing is the overall result of this experience and the atmosphere within the team" he explained.
On the whole, Tiago Monteiro raced for nearly five hours and he gained several places during each of his stints. The Portuguese driver took to the wheel for the first time on Saturday, shortly after 18:30 and moved the no.10 up four places in the general classification. On Sunday he climbed back into the car in the early hours and was even faster, despite the challenging night conditions, moving up five places to put the car into 14th position before handing the wheel over to Stephane Ortelli. Alas, the driver from Monaco then went off track and the damage was irreparable.
Tiago Monteiro has little time to rest as he is now eagerly awaiting the next round of the World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) which will take place next weekend where the SEAT Sport driver will continue to defend the Spanish team's title in the two races scheduled to take place in Brno (Czech Republic).