Loïc Duval (Team Peugeot TotalEnergies): “We’re bidding for a 24 Hours of Le Mans win”
The first full FIA WEC season for the Peugeot 9X8 was a challenging one for Team Peugeot TotalEnergies and its drivers. Loïc Duval, part of the #94 crew, is now looking ahead to 2024 and has set some clear goals: staying competitive and aiming for the win at the 92nd 24 Hours of Le Mans (12-16 June 2024).
How would you sum up the Peugeot 9X8’s first full season in WEC?
It was a difficult season overall. I think we started with the toughest test at Sebring. It wasn’t an easy circuit for our car. We made some progress at the following races. We prepared for the 24 Hours of Le Mans pretty well. In my view, Le Mans was the highlight of our season because until 3 o’clock in the morning, we were frequently at the front of the field. It was all quite positive. In the second half of the season, our hard work was rewarded when we took the third podium spot at Monza. We performed really well there. By the end of the season, we were out of the running, so we turned our focus to 2024.
At the 24 Hours of Le Mans, your car was in the lead on two occasions. How did you feel when you saw that?
I felt proud for the whole team. Nobody really expected us to be competing at that level, so it was a great feeling for everyone. It was very important for team spirit. It was also highly rewarding to see the car in the lead and battling for a top spot until late into the night. It’s given us a solid footing for the work that lies ahead.
"My job is to drive as best I can and to share my ideas"
Loïc Duval, Team Peugeot TotalEnergies
Did the podium at Monza give the team a boost?
Yes, the podium spot did us all a lot of good. It was really important for the team to secure a decent result after the 24 Hours of Le Mans. When the #93 9X8 flew past the chequered flag, the excitement in the team was plain for all to see.
What’s your strategy for closing the gap that exists between your team and Toyota and Ferrari?
You’ll have to ask the technical department. My job is to drive as best I can and to share my ideas. It’s really the technical team’s role to optimise the car’s development.
Antonin VINCENT (ACO)
In that respect, will Peugeot be a contender for victory at the 2024 24 Hours of Le Mans?
We can’t answer that today. Our clear aim for next year is to be competitive and to bid for a 24 Hours of Le Mans win. That’s the top priority for everyone.
What does it mean to be a factory driver in the Hypercar era?
It’s a source of pride. I’m delighted to be part of this chapter. I’m thrilled to be on the grid and in a discipline that I love. I’m really excited to be competing in the championship at a time when there are so many manufacturers, teams and drivers involved.
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