Just before the Monaco ePrix, André Lotterer (Porsche TAG Heuer) deciphers for Auto Moto his commitment to Formula E, his strong link with Belgium, also mentioning Porsche’s return to endurance in 2023.
He is the very example of the versatile driverable to adapt his piloting to very different disciplines. Triple winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2011, 2012 and 2014, Andre Lotterer went from an endurance prototype to an electric single-seater by joining the Formula Efirst at Techeetah, end of 2017. Now pilot Porsche TAG Heuersince the arrival of the manufacturer end of 2019the German – who masters the language of Molière very well – details his desire to win a victory this season, even to aim for the world title. Without forgetting the endurance component with Porsche for 2023.
What are your objectives with Porsche for this end of the season and for 2023?
Andre Lotterer: Our objectives were nevertheless achieved, since the first year, we wanted to make podiums, which was achieved from the first race with a 2nd place. Last season, the goal was to win a race, which my teammate did on the track before being disqualified because of what you might call a bureaucratic mistake with regard to the tires, which had no impact on performance. The objective of this third season for Porsche is clearly to fight for the title. We are well placed in the drivers’ and constructors’ championships so things are going well, we put on a good show in Mexico. I have always qualified in duels, this new format of qualification suits me well. It’s always good to approach the race and I hope it will continue, starting with Monaco this weekend hoping to win.
Could a city in Belgium, a country where you grew up, host Formula E?
Andre Lotterer: There is a very rich history. I was cradled in it from a very young age, my father being a trainer, team manager and technical director of a big team in Belgium, on circuits and rallies. As he was the boss, he could take my mother and me on the circuits, since I was little. That’s how I caught the virus. There are a lot of big events in Belgium, but not in Formula E. A few years ago, there was a project in Brussels around the Atomium, but it didn’t happen. Maybe it’s still under discussion, even if the Formula is discussing with many other cities in the world.
All disciplines combined, which events do you place at the top of motorsport?
Andre Lotterer: In general, I would first mention the major endurance events: 24h of Le Mans, 24h of Spa, Nürburgring, Daytona and Sebring. And in F1, for me, the most beautiful GPs are in Monaco, Spa, Monza, Suzuka, but it’s a shame that there are no more races in Germany. I think it’s important to keep the places that were the basis of each discipline and which are therefore legendary.
Do you envisage a return to the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the premier category with Porsche in 2023?
Andre Lotterer: I would like that, of course, it’s still the greatest race in history. There have been tests, but I haven’t ridden yet.
Is it obvious to switch from an endurance prototype to an electric single-seater and vice versa?
Andre Lotterer: As a driver, adaptability is important and that means knowing what you can do with each car. For example, when I was driving in Japan in Super Formula, on a qualifying lap, I had to put in 120% to extract the car’s full potential. Conversely, in Formula E, you have to hold back because there is no aero, slick tires. But it’s an art, I find, between the rally and the circuit because the single-seater moves a lot. As a result, the driver has a lot of responsibility to register the car as well as possible in each corner. In the old way, a bit like in Formula Ford, we are often at work (laughs).
Interview by Richard Burgan / Photo: Porsche
More informations :
Formula E: Speedy Porsche in Mexico
Formula E 2022: calendar, drivers, teams, standings
2022 Formula E calendar: race dates and times