WEC

Francois Perrodo 'didn't feel favourite at all' for Silverstone win

Francois Perrodo says he was not expecting to claim GTE Am to honours in last weekend's 4 Hours of Silverstone, as he was not considering himself a favorite for victory.

The Frenchman took victory in the very competitive GTE Am class alongside Emmanuel Collard and Nicklas Nielsen, piloting the #83 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE Evo to first place ahead of the #98 Aston Martin of Darren Turner, Ross Gunn and Paul Dalla Lana, with the #70 MR Racing Ferrari in third place. It was a happy return to Silverstone for Perrodo and Collard, as the pair took their last victory together at the same track in 2016.

Speaking to Motorsport Week after the race, the 2016 GTE Am champion expressed surprise about the win.

"Amazing, particularly since we didn’t feel a favorite at all," Perrodo said. "We qualified P4, so not too bad but we knew that there were some faster cars out there. And it showed in my first stint, it was hard to keep up with the leaders. But between traffic and a couple of mistakes, I managed to grab the opportunity, and then I was super happy not to have the rain to deal with, because staying one half in the car was enough for me."

We grabbed 25 points, it’s great. I think Fuji will be a different story, especially now with this success ballast story, so we’re gonna carry more weight. And I think as you know, in sector three, coming out, there’s an uphill and then a super long straight, so we’ll see how that one goes, but this weekend’s been good."

Perrodo's victory seemed in jeopardy when he was one of a number of GTE Am frontrunners penalized for a full course yellow infraction, handing the Frenchman a drive through penalty.

"I was involved, yeah. I think it was basically the first four cars," Perrodo explained. "I think it was the two Astons, the Porsche and myself. And I was really really behind Dalla Lana’s car, and I did not want to to a gap be built and when they braked for the full course yellow, I was like ‘damn, that’s really late, I think we’re definitely over the limit.’

But yeah, with hindsight, I should have listened to the countdown and I wouldn’t have had a drivethrough because that hurt us a lot in the race, but we managed to pull it back."