Matthieu Vaxivière: “Endurance is one of several options for the future”

Matthieu Vaxivière: “Endurance is one of several options for the future”

Matthieu Vaxivi

What stands out in your mind when you reflect on your season in the World Endurance Championship [with Prospeed Competition, driving the Porsche 997 GT3 RSR, Ed.]
I had a great time. I travelled all over the world. The World Endurance Championship is superb and I felt at home with Prospeed Competition and Emmanuel Collard and François Perrodo. We became friends. I have some really lovely memories of the season. I learned a lot and built up my experience. As far as performance was concerned, we were slightly under par but we didn’t have the highest performing car in the LM GTE Am field. However, we proved that we were quick and that we were capable of getting results [3rd in the 6 Hours of Fuji, for example, Ed.]

Did this experience with a GTE help you in driving a single-seater?
It was my job to drive a GTE. I was really happy to do it. Racing is what fires me up. The GTE helped in terms of tyre management, strategy and endurance in general. I’ve notched up some experience for later.

What about the 24 Hours of Le Mans 2014?
Unfortunately, I had to pull out because I was injured. [He fractured a vertebra in an accident in Monaco during the World Series by Renault FR 3.5. Markus Palttala stood in for him, Ed.] I was there as a spectator, but it’s not the same. It’s a legendary race and I regret I couldn’t take part.

What did you get out of driving with someone like Emmanuel Collard?
Maturity and experience. I was a little bit quicker than him, which was fun, because I could compare myself to him. He taught me a lot about settings and race strategy. He’s very human, a really good guy. I have a lot of affection for him. We still call each other.

You had an excellent season in Formula Renault 3.5 (He is set to become vice-champion after the last leg in Jerez, Spain; Oliver Rowland secured the title in Le Mans last weekend). What are your plans for 2016?
I have had a good season, even though the end was a bit difficult, especially Nürburgring and the first leg at Le Mans. I shall finish vice-champion this year. For 2016, I have several options, but nothing firm for the moment. I haven’t signed anything yet so I can’t talk about it!

Do you envisage returning to endurance racing?
I’m looking at all my options and endurance is one of them.

David Bristol / ACO — Translated from French by Emma Paulay

Read our interview with Emmanuel Collard

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