Currently reading: Porsche works driver Nick Tandy on chances of a win at Le Mans
British racer won Le Mans outright in 2015 with the 919; now he’s going for gold in GTE class

Works Porsche driver Nick Tandy, one of Britain’s top endurance racers, is in with a real chance of taking a win at this weekend’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.

If he does, it will be Tandy's second win at the World Endurance Championship’s crowning event, although it would be a very different success from his first. That victory came outright in 2015 in a Porsche 919 Hybrid that raced in the top LMP1 category.

Porsche has since quit that division, so Tandy is now back in the GTE Pro division, driving a 919 RSR alongside Patrick Pilet and Earl Bamber. But while his new car has far less horsepower than the last, Tandy arguably faces his toughest challenge yet in this weekend’s race.

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Are you ready for the race?

“I’m itching to get going. There’s a lot of preparation that goes into this race, but you don’t get so much track time. At other races, we get more practice time.”

How is your build-up going?

“It’s going well. It’s the second year of this 911 RSR GT programme, so obviously we’ve got a whole year of experience with it now. I’m coming into it from the LMP1 programme, so I’m learning. With the extra cars in the class, it’s been the right time to put a big focus into winning the GTE Pro class.”

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Is GTE Pro more competitive than LMP1 was last year?

“If you look at LMP1 last year, there were basically five cars. Honestly, you can look at GTE Pro and say that 17 cars could win the race. Everyone is going to be similar on lap times. We came here in 2015 when LMP1 was at its peak, and even then there weren’t that many cars that could win. It’s so hard to win. You can have a fast car, do a faultless race and, if a bit of strategy goes wrong, you fall to sixth.”

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Which is tougher: driving an LMP1 race or battling in GTE Pro?

“It’s harder in the slower class, because your attention has to be behind you. In LMP1, you only look forward; you only have to look behind you if you’re in a fight, which rarely happens in a 24-hour race. In GTE Pro, you’re constantly looking in your mirror and looking forward. The attention needed is a lot higher.

“You do get more of a break on the straights, because they’re longer since you’re going slower, but you’re constantly having to focus. There are different challenges. In an LMP1 car, you have to be more aware that things can go wrong quicker, but there’s not much difference in corner speed now, due to the downforce the GTE Pro cars have. It’s a similar challenge.”

Which do you prefer?

“You do more as a driver in a GT car. The corner takes longer, the braking zones are longer and the cars move around a lot more. In a 919, if you had put sideways any any point, you’d lose a second or go off. In the 911 RSR, if you’re going flat out, the car is constantly moving around. You do more as a driver in a heavier GT car. You don’t get the thrill of the speed and downforce as an LMP1 car, but it’s more rewarding.”

James Attwood

James Attwood, digital editor
Title: Acting magazine editor

James is Autocar's acting magazine editor. Having served in that role since June 2023, he is in charge of the day-to-day running of the world's oldest car magazine, and regularly interviews some of the biggest names in the industry to secure news and features, such as his world exclusive look into production of Volkswagen currywurst. Really.

Before first joining Autocar in 2017, James spent more than a decade in motorsport journalist, working on Autosport,, F1 Racing and Motorsport News, covering everything from club rallying to top-level international events. He also spent 18 months running Move Electric, Haymarket's e-mobility title, where he developed knowledge of the e-bike and e-scooter markets. 

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