Frédéric Makowiecki is a major player in GT. An official Porsche driver since 2014, he has claimed a podium finish at Le Mans twice, but is still seeking a win in the LMGTE Pro class. He will once again represent Porsche GT Team at the 24 Hours in 2018.
Do you prefer...
...the start or the finish? "I'd say both. The start is always a very exciting moment with the rush of adrenaline and the pressure. It's an electric moment, so I guess I'll go with the start. I've been lucky enough to do both. The finish with all the marshals waving their flags on the edge of the track, it's magical. It's very moving, especially when you're in the middle of finishing well, but the start is the result of all the work done since Scrutineering, and that's what makes me happy."
...the first, second or third stint? "I don't really have a preference when it comes to that. Some drivers feel more at ease at night. So it all depends on what my teammates want. Everyone needs to feel good, comfortable and have the opportunity to showcase themselves."
...sunrise or sunset? "Sunrise! When you see the sun coming up, you know most of the race is behind you. From then on, depending upon your position, you can start to attack a little harder."
...a few hours sleep during the night of the 24 Hours of Le Mans or white night? "You have to sleep, otherwise at some point you're going to feel it, primarily near the end of the race. You can't forget it's not simply 24 hours. You wake up around 7 o'clock Saturday morning because you have to get to the circuit and the warm-up is pretty early. I'd say you're awake more like 36 or 38 hours. It's just that everything needs to be well-organized around the nap. If you're stressed out for fear of not waking up in time or you're sleeping in poor conditions, it can complicate matters."
...Scrutineering or the Drivers' Parade? "I prefer the Parade. Of course, Scrutineering is a good time, but during the Parade you're closer to the spectators. At Scrutineering, you're more involved with those passionate about motorsport in general, with people who know it well. At the Parade, the crowd is bigger."
...a massage or a meal right after a stint? "First off, I prefer to have a talk with my engineer. Then I'll have a bit of something to eat because digestion takes a bit of time, then I'll get a massage to relax and get ready for my night."
...the Indianapolis turn or the Porsche curves? "Both are truly great. The Porsche curves are magical, especially when you're driving an official Porsche (laughs, Ed.). Indianapolis, the right then left, is also a spectacular spot on the circuit. So it's just too hard to choose."
...the 24 Hours of Nürburgring or the 24 Hours of Le Mans? "As a Frenchman, I have to say Le Mans! For me, it's the greatest Endurance race in the world. In the LMGTE Pro class, there are now five constructors, it's all-out war. In 2018, there will be six with the arrival of BMW. At the Nürburgring, it's pretty much the same thing with five or six manufacturers officially participating. It's difficult to win either race given that the performance levels of the constructors are relatively identical. But, Le Mans will always be Le Mans, it is special to me!"
...a dry track or a wet track? "I like the rain, but there's always the possibility of a stream of water you don't see or getting hit by a competitor. Also, visibility in the rain with the LMP1s is complicated. So, I prefer a dry trick, running on slicks because it better symbolizes the race and makes the challenge even better."
...jogging or biking in preparation for the 24 Hours of Le Mans? "I prefer biking, but with Porsche that doesn't really fly because they're all about jogging (laughs, Ed.). So they make me run…".