Robin Frijns on Le Mans: “The team radio was going mad!”
In this month’s episode of WEC Talk, and in the run-up to the FIA WEC’s first-ever double-header which will take place in Bahrain, we heard from recent 24 Hours of Le Mans category winners: Team WRT.
Team driver Robin Frijns chats to WEC Talk host Martin Haven about his rollercoaster debut at this year’s Le Mans, his journey into motorsport and his hopes for the WEC season-finale. We also hear from Team WRT’s boss Vincent Vosse who reflects on a bittersweet victory at Le Mans, and also about his extremely varied career in sportscars.
The LMP2 battle at this year’s Le Mans will be remembered as one of the most exciting and closest finishes in the event’s history. Just 0.7s separated the winning WRT squad – driven by Frijns, Charles Milesi and Ferdinand Habsburg – and JOTA, who eventually finished runner-up. There was also heartache for the sister Team WRT car whose Oreca 07 LMP2 car stopped on the final lap in a devastatingly cruel turn of events…
When asked to sum up his debut Le Mans experience, 30-year-old Dutchman Frijns explained it was full of drama:
“We were leading overnight and then in the final three hours everything started to go wrong. We had an air jack issue so we were losing time in the pits… then we had a tyre failure too. I was feeling stressed towards the end, the car had some issues and I was losing around four seconds each lap. I was desperately holding onto P2 and then I remember hearing on the radio that the sister car had stopped. I saw it then myself and I was heartbroken for the guys but I tried to keep it together for that final lap knowing [Tom] Blomqvist was just behind me on better tyres and closing the gap massively…”
Vincent Vosse then took up the story: “In motorsport they always say that the race is not over until you cross the finish line but at Le Mans this year, everything was running perfectly for our No. 41 car. We had no warning of what was to come… It was mixed feelings to see half of my team go to heaven and the other half having a nightmare… but we should not underestimate what it takes to bring two cars to Le Mans for the first time and for them to be in 1-2 coming into the final lap.”
Looking ahead to the future, Team WRT are now just one point behind JOTA in the LMP2 teams’ standings – an incredible achievement for the Belgian squad in their debut WEC season.
Frijns spoke of his intentions for the final two WEC races of the year: “I know Bahrain pretty well, I did GP2 and a Formula 1 test there so I know what to expect. If nothing major goes wrong I think we will have a really good chance of securing the title. It would be amazing for WRT jumping in to WEC for the first time and then to take the LMP2 world championship title. That’s definitely our goal.”
Don’t forget to listen HERE. On the same link, you can also find last month’s chat with Mr Le Mans himself, Tom Kristensen, as well as several other in-depth interviews with various drivers and key names from the world of endurance racing.
About WEC Talk
Available on various platforms including Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and Deezer, the WEC’s official podcast promises fans a unique insight into the exhilarating world of sportscars.
With exclusive interviews from drivers, team members, management and legendary figures involved in endurance racing, fans across the world can get their regular sportscars fix by tuning into WEC Talk.