Thursday 21 April 2011

Test Day : The Peugeot 908 HDi FAP back at Le Mans…

Test Day : The Peugeot 908 HDi FAP back at Le Mans…

A month after their triumph at the 12 Hours of Sebring, Team ORECA-Matmut is headed back to the track with the Peugeot 908 HDi FAP. The team is preparing for their next rendez-vous: the 1000km of Spa, second round of the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup, then the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Before this, the return of the Test Day will allow new prototypes to stretch their legs on the legendary Circuit de la Sarthe. But for the Peugeot 908 HDi FAP, it won’t be anything new. The Lion has competed in the famous twice around the clock race four times. For Team ORECA-Matmut it’s like coming home, after a good performance in 2010 with fastest race lap and a podium finish within reach before the last hour of the race.

That said, the Test Day will still be important, as David Floury points out: “These tests will give us an idea of the performance of the car. The priority will be to adapt the car the best we can to the 2011 regulations. For example, we plan to work hard on tyre management: we have an idea of the wear to expect, but the new rules are not inconsequential. The drivers and team know what to expect from the Peugeot 908 HDi FAP on the Le Mans circuit, but we already know that 2011 won’t be a copy-paste from 2010. This track always evolves from one year to the next.”

Winners of this year’s 12 Hours of Sebring, Nicolas Lapierre, Loïc Duval and Olivier Panis will use this Test Day to gauge the circuit. “It’s a general refresh of their marks,” confirms the Team ORECA-Matmut Technical Director. “For the drivers, it will mean finding the rhythm specific to Le Mans and analyzing the traffic. For the technical team, its an opportunity to get back into European style racing in advance of Spa.”

The team is therefore ready to tackle the next steps, using the experience gained In Florida. “At Sebring, the drivers and technicians did an optimal job. It’s the reward of several years of hard work and it has brought us peace of mind. That said, we don’t plan on resting on our laurels. Starting with the week after the race, we began work with the goal of finishing well at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The strategy will be the same: optimise everything. And this starts with the Test Day…”

After scrutineering, set for Friday, April 22 at 11:15 a.m. for the No. 10 Team ORECA Matmut Peugeot 908 HDi FAP, the Test Day will be held Sunday, April 24, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Info: Acreditated a Autorized Media Press.

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