017 GTE Pro class winner and Aston Martin Racing factory driver Jonny Adam has been given a pre-race boost thanks to Lady Luck – which will be emblazoned on his race helmet and overalls for this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.
However, the Scotsman hopes he won’t have to rely on a mysterious rub of the green to deliver another sensational result at Circuit de la Sarthe on June 16/17.
“The 2017 Le Mans success story makes coming back to this iconic race even more special this year, especially with it being the Le Mans debut of our new Aston Martin Vantage GTE,” he explained.
“It’s the highlight of the season so far, and as a team our preparation has been really detailed to make sure we do everything we can to deliver a good result for our fans and partners.
“The new car is beautiful to drive and is a major step forward from its predecessor, so if we can have a clean race we believe we can challenge for another top result.”
In order to get him even more fired up about the big event we asked Jonny ‘sept questions’ – a number Lady Luck would surely approve of.
How does it feel going into this year’s 24hrs as a reigning champion?
“It’s a great feeling and adds some extra confidence ahead of the race week. The level of GTE Pro is arguably even tougher than last year with more new entries, so it raises the bar of the challenge and keeps you focused on what is needed to ensure we can take the race to our rivals.”
This is your third consecutive appearance at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, is your approach to this year’s edition different with the experience you’ve built up?
“You definitely grow in experience every time and it makes the preparation easier ahead of what is absolutely the biggest event of the year. My fitness training has been upped even more over the past month in readiness, so I’m feeling physically and mentally good ahead of the race. Plus, racing at British GT this weekend will keep me sharp from a driving point of view.”
What do you enjoy most about Le Mans 24 Hours?
“There is no other race that has this amount of pressure, it’s one of the biggest in the world and I enjoy that as it makes us more determined to perform to our maximum as a team. The atmosphere is electric as well because over 300,000 people attend, and events such as the parade in the town centre make it totally unique and very special to be a part of.”
There’s a lot of build-up and media interest in this event, how does that affect you away from the track?
“It’s true that there’s a lot more media attention around this race even compared to WEC events, but especially for us this year with our new Aston Martin Vantage GTE making its Le Mans 24 Hours debut. It’s been a great fun doing some really cool promotional and media work ahead of the race, keep a close eye on the week of Le Mans as we’ve been busy behind the scenes and I’m sure everyone will enjoy the end product!”
You’re driving with new teammates this year, how are you gelling as a crew?
“I’ve got on great with Maxime [Martin] and Alex [Lynn]. They are top professionals with a lot of experience at a very high level in different categories. They’re fast and fun to be around, which makes sharing a car enjoyable and very rewarding as we trust each other to deliver on track.”
What’s your sleep pattern like during the race?
“It gets better with experience. In my first Le Mans 24 Hours I think I slept for about one hour max as I was so excited about being there. Last year was much better, but the general sleep pattern is around 4-5 hours overall. We actually don’t see much of each other as teammates during this event as it’s like doing shift work at different times, but hopefully we’ll all be together on the podium at the end of it!”
How good is your French? Can you count to 24 en francais?
“It’s d’accord. In all honesty it’s not great, but generally I get by with a friendly wave and a bonjour!”