Acting as the honourary grand marshal for the fourth round of the FIA World Endurance Championship, endurance racing legend Gerard Larrousse gave us his impressions of the Circuit of the Americas track and reminisced about his own sports car memories in North America.
Gerard, what was it like being the Grand Marshal for the FIA World Endurance Championship race at COTA this weekend?
Yes it was a great honour for me to have been selected and to flag this amazing grid away for the start of the race. I have a great passion for endurance racing and it will be fascinating to see how the race goes this evening. It was fantastic.
The COTA circuit is very interesting. Yannick Dalmas took me around in an official car and it was nice to see the different corners. A very impressive facility.
What do you make of the FIA WEC from what you have seen?
So far I have to say I am impressed by the job everyone has done from the organisation, ACO and FIA. The Championship has great teams, great drivers and some very interesting rules and technology. All of the ingredients are there for sure, so I am sure it will grow and grow.
Do you have fond memories of racing in North America during your career?
Yes, I do. Especially at Sebring and Watkins Glen where I won races with the Matra. I remember the races so well but I also have good memories playing golf with Jean-Pierre Beltoise and Francois Cevert. Good times for sure.
Larrousse started his career of in rallying in the early 1960s before moving on to endurance racing, most famously with Matra where he famously won the 1971 Sebring 12 Hours and the Le Mans 24 Hours two years later.
Larrousse also made two Grand Prix appearances and ran his own F1 team between 1987-1994.