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Wadoux: Return to All-Pro Racing “Good For My Career”

Lilou Wadoux “enjoying every lap” as she gears up for SUPER GT debut at Okayama with PONOS Racing…

Photo: Jamie Klein

Factory Ferrari racer Lilou Wadoux says she is relishing the prospect of returning to all-pro competition as she gears up for her SUPER GT debut this weekend at Okayama.

Wadoux is set to make her first start in the Japanese series sharing a PONOS Racing Ferrari 296 GT3 with Kei Cozzolino, having spent the last two seasons racing largely in the FIA World Endurance Championship.

After spending her season WEC in LMP2 with Richard Mille Racing, Wadoux moved to the GTE Am class in 2023 with AF Corse, finishing eighth in the standings alongside Alessio Rovera and Luis Perez Companc.

But the French driver says she is looking forward to being back in an all-pro environment, and feels racing in SUPER GT will help her develop as a driver.

“For sure it’s good,” Wadoux told Sportscar365. “You have something to aim for and you are at the same level with everything. 

“Sometimes with a gentleman driver, you don’t finish the race, it’s not easy, and you cannot manage the level of the gentleman driver. Sometimes you have a ‘fake’ gentleman driver and it’s not easy to win a race. 

“But it will be good for me, good for my career, and I really enjoy driving here and this confidential tire.

“I enjoy every lap here, which is good because sometimes this is not the case in Europe.”

Wadoux has previously stated her intention to move up to the Hypercar ranks with Ferrari, but the 22-year-old says she would be happy to remain in SUPER GT alongside any other commitments she has with the Italian manufacturer next year and beyond.

“Since I arrived here I’ve only had good times, and it’s not the case in every car and championship I’ve done,” she said.

“You can combine it with other championships in Europe. There’s a lot of travelling, but you can have two or three championships at the same time, which is super-nice.”

Wadoux missed the official test at Okayama last month due to a clash with the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, but gained experience of the track in a previous private test.

She returned to the cockpit of the Michelin-shod PONOS 296 for the final test of the pre-season at Fuji, although her running was compromised by a crash in the wet on the first day of running.

On her targets for her first weekend in SUPER GT, Wadoux said: “We’ll see in the race because it will be my first race here and I don’t know how to manage everything here.

“For sure there are a lot of new things for me, including how to manage the GT500s [passing]. I would say they are quite similar to Hypercar in WEC, but here it will be more difficult than it was at Fuji for example. 

“I don’t know this championship so it’s difficult to give a target for this weekend, but I’ll be happy if we finish in the top 10, and even happier if we can do better than that. 

“I think after the first two races we will know if we can fight at the top or not.”

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.

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