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First race in LMP3, first victory

The meeting was set for April 30 at the Circuit du Paul Ricard to compete in the first round of the Ultimate Cup Series championship in LMP3 within TEAM VIRAGE.


After the podium (Photo credit: Arthur CHOPIN)


I was very eager to return to competition after many months of preparation.


I couldn't wait to meet my teammates but also the entire team for this first race weekend of the season.


FRIDAY

Friday was synonymous with a preparation day with two 50″ free practice sessions. I was able to rediscover the track but also understand the 11 turns of the circuit with my new car. I quickly got into the rhythm, a positive aspect when you know that we can complete around fifteen laps at most per driver. We used the second session to pick up the pace. A lap in qualifying mode then puts me 5 and a half tenths behind Mathias BECHE. A good omen for Saturday...


SATURDAY

Saturday, rain comes to the circuit. The qualification took place in 3 parts. The first was provided by Miguel Cristovao. I took the second part, while Julian Wagg drove during the last qualifying session. The conditions were very difficult but our crew finished in pole position more than a second ahead of the seconds. For my first time in the rain with the car, I concluded my series in first position with a 1.5 second lead over the crew of the sister car.


Qualifying session in the rain (Photo credit Arthur Chopin)


The conditions were milder for the race but nevertheless remained very tricky. Miguel Cristovao took the start to complete the first stint. After 1 hour, it was my turn to get in the car. As night fell and for my first in these conditions, I continued my relay without incident, even improving the times at the start of the race. At 9:55 p.m., Julian Wagg took the wheel again to finish the race. After 3 hours and 105 laps completed, we crossed the finish line in first position, 7 seconds ahead of the efficient crew Mathias Beche and Emilien Carde.


A fantastic feeling to be with the whole team waiting to see Julian finishing his victory lap. The Virage team had established a superb strategy, my teammates and I had made no mistakes. A great team victory...

Family photo (Photo credit Iconic Studio)

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