French race car driver Benoit Treluyer is set to embark on his seventh appearance in the 24 Hours of Le Mans this coming June with Audi Sport Team Joest and a title win in his radar.
After winning the titles in 2011, 2012 and 2014, the 39-year-old veteran explained that despite already having three championships in his name, he refuses to take any aspect of the 24-hour race for granted.
“You never really manage to get a handle on the race, even after three wins. I never take anything for granted there because there is no recipe for success,” he said.
Treluyer added that he still has the same level of excitement and stress that he had during his first races at Le Mans.
“I still look forward to Le Mans with the same degree of pleasure, apprehension and stress. I find it hard to distinguish between these feelings. When I see pictures of the race afterwards, I can’t wait to go back but it’s really a mixture of all these feelings that take over,” he stated.
This year, the German race team will be fielding a two-car roster to focus their resources down to just two prime drivers and their new R18 cars.
“That affects the program during race week and also all the testing that goes on beforehand to prepare for the 24 Hours of Le Mans,” Treluyer said. “We always try to come to Le Mans with as much data as possible, but also to pick up as much as we can while we’re there by running the cars. But with just two Audi R18s, it means we’ll have to work quicker and sometimes make do with just three laps to check a setup instead of five.”
Treluyer also revealed that they would be out of their comfort zones with the set-up but reiterated they are prepared to do their best with the same amount of work.
With the pressure of regaining the trophy from the Porsche Team, Treluyer said he welcomes the challenge.
“With Porsche taking the ascendancy, Audi have pushed us to the limit, to work even harder and look for the slightest detail that can make all the difference. Personally, I love it when I have my back to the wall. It brings out the best in me,” he said.
The French professional race car driver also stated they would stay focused on winning the title this coming 2016 season.
“We’re not relaxed at all! We have to stay aggressive to try and fight off the competition and win. We were aggressive last year too because the hybrid subclass we were entered in should theoretically have prevented us from competing with the Porsche 919 Hybrids. And yet we won two races and fought down to the wire in the final lap of the final race for the championship title,” he added.