Connect with us

24H Le Mans

Lotterer Eyes Best Chance Yet for Fourth Le Mans Win

Andre Lotterer looks ahead to strong opportunity of adding to his illustrious Le Mans legacy with Porsche…

Julien Delfosse/DPPI

Porsche’s Andre Lotterer believes this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans offers him the best opportunity yet to clinch his fourth victory in the French endurance classic, considering the German brand’s strong start to the FIA World Endurance Championship.

Lotterer, 42, is still chasing a fourth triumph at the Circuit de la Sarthe that would put him level with the likes of Olivier Gendebien, Henri Pescarolo and Yannick Dalmas, a decade on from his most recent victory with Audi.

He and his teammates in the No. 6 Porsche Penske Motorsport entry, Kevin Estre and Laurens Vanthoors, are leading the WEC standings with three races down after victory in the Qatar season opener and second-place finishes at Imola and Spa.

“Yeah, it feels good,” Lotterer told Sportscar365 when asked if he felt 2024 offered the best chance yet of earning his fourth Le Mans win.

“The start of the season has been very hopeful and the momentum is good. The way I’m working with my teammates and the engineers is very efficient, very positive. Things are obviously much better than last year.

“You obviously need performance at Le Mans and we don’t know how everyone else is going to be, but within the team we have reached a level where we can optimize things almost to the maximum.

“It’s not even comparable to last year. We nailed the set-up at Qatar, Imola and Spa and I think we have all the elements to do the same here.”

After the end of the Audi LMP1 project in 2016, Lotterer raced the Porsche 919 Hybrid at Le Mans in 2017 before that program likewise came to an end.

He then endured two uncompetitive showings at La Sarthe with Rebellion Racing before sitting out the 2020, ’21 and ’22 races to focus on his Formula E duties.

Last year’s first visit to Le Mans for the 963 was also fraught with difficulty, as Lotterer and his teammates struggled to 22nd overall amid myriad reliability issues.

Lotterer is adamant that his motivation remains undimmed after so many difficult years at Le Mans, even if he admits that teammates Estre and Vanthoor have had a slightly easier time adapting to LMDh machinery than he has.

“Motivation-wise, the passion is there,” said Lotterer. “The cars are different to drive [to LMP1], more like GT cars, so Kevin and Laurens maybe feel a bit more at home than me.

“There’s a trend of the guys coming from GT taking more risks, pushing more. That’s different from the past. We are also pushing a lot of course, but I feel like the risks used to be slightly more calculated.

“You see guys taking more risks now, so maybe there’s a generation gap there, a different style. Sometimes I am a bit surprised by it.

“I was more at home in LMP1. But I still enjoy it a lot and I want to push. They are different cars to drive, but you have to adapt and do your best.”

Asked how many more opportunities he believes he will have to get a fourth Le Mans win, Lotterer replied: “I don’t know, let’s go one-by-one and see how this one goes.

“Hopefully I will have a few more! I still feel like I can do the job well enough.”

Jamie Klein is Sportscar365's Asian editor. Japan-based Klein, who previously worked for Motorsport Network on the Motorsport.cоm and Autosport titles, covers the FIA World Endurance Championship and SUPER GT, among other series.

Click to comment
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

More in 24H Le Mans