86th Le Mans 24 hours almost upon Larbre Competition

86th Le Mans 24 hours almost upon Larbre Competition

16.06.2018: Race day has arrived, with Larbre Competition and its driver trio successfully completing the Drivers’ Parade and morning warm-up as the countdown to the Le Mans 24 Hours nears its end.

Race day has arrived, with Larbre Competition and its driver trio successfully completing the Drivers’ Parade and morning warm-up as the countdown to the Le Mans 24 Hours nears its end.



Having achieved its goals in the pre-race sessions, the French squad and its crew Romano Ricci, Erwin Creed and Thomas Dagoneau headed to downtown Le Mans to be greeted by an enthusiastic crowd for the traditional Drivers’ Parade.



In Saturday morning’s 45-minute warm-up session the team opted to only run Ricci, who completed five laps in the #50 Ligier JS P217, the fastest of which was almost a second up on his qualifying time, further highlighting that Larbre Competition will be a strong contender in the race.



The Val de Vienne-based outfit have a highly successful record at the French endurance classic, taking five class victories (1993, 1994, 2010, 2011 and 2012) with three manufacturers. Larbre Competition is also entered in the 2018/19 FIA World Endurance Championship ‘Super Season’, with this weekend marking round two.



For its 25th participation, Jack Leconte’s experienced team has entered the LMP2 class and will line-up 19th in the prototype category, with Ricci chosen to take the start.



At 15:00 local time, Tennis legend Rafael Nadal will wave the famous Tricolore to signal the start of the twice-around-the-clock-event.

 


Jack Leconte:
“The warm-up can be tricky, so I made sure to brief Romano this morning to make sure there were no mistakes. The balance of the car is good, which is always satisfying for our team members after all the work we have done.


With a full tank of fuel and used tyres we were able to improve our time from qualifying and the gap between all of the LMP2 runners is a lot narrower. It looks like it will be an interesting race.”



Romano Ricci:
“Warm-up was very good, the balance was great and we have no problems to report. I am delighted and proud to be given the responsibility of taking the start of the Le Mans 24 Hours.


 The Drivers’ Parade was good fun! It was interesting to see all the crazy fans in the streets cheering us on and people fighting to get signed memorabilia from us. I slept in my motor home at the circuit last night, as I focused my mind on the big race.”



Erwin Creed: “T
he parade was incredible, it was just like we were rockstars for an hour. There were a lot of people and I hope this continues in the future, as it shows it’s the world’s biggest race. We were all very excited and talking to the fans, but making sure to keep our energy for the main event!”



Thomas Dagoneau:
“I remember during my first Le Mans the Drivers’ Parade was a big occasion, but I think there were even more people than usual this year! It’s a special moment that we’re able to share with the spectators, which is really fantastic especially for me as I’m from Le Mans.



 I saw people I see every day at Place des Jacobins and Place de la Republique, you don’t really notice how big the event is until you’re a part of it.”




Jeremy Bordes (Osteopath) and Laurent Beuvin (Doctor & Osteopath):
“On Monday we took the three drivers to a training camp. We used this time to check them physically, and see where their fitness was. Despite having already trained for the season-opener, Le Mans is like four FIA WEC races combined and they are still learning the car.



 The objective was to teach the drivers some exercises they can do themselves to get warmed up, as well as giving general physical training, and nutrition advice, which is important for the 24-hour event. We will look after them as soon as they get out of the car during the race, then do an osteopathic follow-up after their showers and get them to relax as much as possible to save their energy.



It is our job to manage their time between stints to maximise recuperation and make sure they are in the best possible condition when they’re back in the cockpit.”



- Anthony Peacock - photos R. Scholer AutoMobilSport.com

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/24h-le-mans-larbre-competition---177422.html

16.06.2018 / MaP

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