Andros E trophy. Aurélien Panis: “The fight promises to be tough, beautiful, but we are ready”

Aurélien, what are your first feelings about your return to the ice after the circuit season?

“I always have a smile when I rediscover the slide and the feels of the Trophy. Everything is in place to have a good winter. The times are already very tight. Everything is decided by tenths over three laps (necessary to set a time) and the small details count from this round of Val Thorens. The ballast (20kg), it’s not great, but it’s manageable. We’re the lightest of the weighted ones (Dubourg, winner of the Trophy in 2022, carries 60kg, Ehrlacher 40) , so it shouldn’t be a problem. I’ve started having a small bottle, the pleasure is always the same so it’s great.”

Who do you see coming out in the title fight?

“There are so many good drivers. I think seven or eight drivers can win races. The fight looks tough, beautiful, but we are ready. It is clear that there is JB Dubourg (champion in title), Yann Ehrlacher (his second place), Olivier Pernaut, Nathanaël Berthon and the new ones like Adrien Fourmaux who comes from the rally, Dorian Boccolacci who goes to Loeb. And also the return of Yvans (Mullers). The competition is even tougher than last season. »

In terms of the circuits and your 2023 season, how will it go?

“I had a great 2022 season with Audi and Saintéloc in GT World Challenge Europe (with his teammates César Gazeau and Nicolas Baert in the Endurance Cup). We performed well, but we didn’t always come true and show all the same good things (Second in Valencia and third in Magny-Cours in the Sprint Cup with Patric Niederhauser, Top 5 in the silver category in Barcelona). Next year I have the enormous chance to become a member of Boutsen and Marc VDS, a new association. I am very proud. It will be a new challenge, with a new team, but still in an Audi. I should race – like in 2022 – in GT World (Endurance and Sprint), although all the programs are not yet finished. We are moving towards that. »

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