The sixth instalment of the official FIA World Endurance Championship podcast is a 24 Hours of Le Mans special featuring an exclusive interview from the ACO President, Pierre Fillon.
The ACO’s Pierre Fillon headlines the latest WEC Talk and discusses various topics including the decision to move this year’s 24 Hour race from June to September and the vast array of measures that the ACO have taken to help fight coronavirus.
Fillon explains: “Many of our volunteers are part of the medical services who are on the front line battling against this virus. It’s our turn to help them... We have contributed in several ways by donating masks, protective cases, all of which protect staff in hospitals, clinics and care homes. That’s just a few ways… team-work comes naturally to us.”
The second half of the interview sees Fillon talking about the new Hyperpole qualifying format, which will be introduced at this year’s race. “We felt it was time to give teams the opportunity to showcase their talent in celebration of pure speed. Hyperpole was designed with that goal… it will be a fantastic show.”
When asked about LMDh, Fillon spoke positively about the championship’s future: “I think we have the perfect rules for the future to attract a lot of manufacturers, especially after this crisis.”
Next to speak to expert endurance racing commentator and WEC Talk host Martin Haven is Ben Rossiter-Turner, who heads up esports at Motorsport Games. Ben is one of the key individuals responsible for helping to “recreate the magic and spirit of Le Mans in the virtual world” and gives an insight into what it takes to organise the first ever 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual, which is scheduled to take place in just over three weeks’ time (13/14 June). With 50 teams and 200 drivers, Ben admits it’s the biggest online esports event he’s had to coordinate. He takes up the story: “Communicating across so many drivers who are not in the same time zone, who speak different languages and who have different hardware requirements, set-ups … is going to be difficult!”
In our third and final interview, we hear from JOTA’s LMP2 driver Antonio Felix da Costa who has spent lockdown back in his homeland, Portugal. Normally leading an extremely busy lifestyle competing in at least two championships for the past five years, Da Costa admits the last two months have been a big adjustment as he “hasn’t been at home for more than two weeks in a row for five or six years.”
He added: “My bike was a few years old before lockdown and I think I had done only around 30km ever on it… I have done more in the last three days than I have in the last six years!”
Links are here:
BREAKING NEWS: THE 24 HOURS OF LE MANS POSTPONED TO 19–20 SEPTEMBER 2020