Nineteen-year-old Frenchman Matthieu Vaxiviere is stepping up from the Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 series to the Formula Renault 3.5 series with the Lotus team for the 2014 season. He has also announced a second campaign in the World Endurance Championship for this year.
“My aim is Formula 1 but it’s important to be able to create openings for yourself,” said Vaxiviere. “From this point of view it’s great to be making my debut in the WEC. Testing went off well and I’m ready to tackle the season in a relaxed frame of mind.
“In the World Series by Renault my aim is to be the best rookie and finish in the top five in the championship. In the WEC we’ll have to keep a close eye on the evolution of the Balance of Performance, which can have a big impact on our competitiveness, but I’m confident. One thing’s sure I can’t wait to start racing.”
Pre-season testing saw Vaxiviere impress his new team, and put his car amongst the front-runners on more than one occasion. He is looking forward to his first venture in FR3.5 this weekend in Monza.
“I learned to get to know the team, the engineers and my team-mate. The latter has a completely different driving style to mine, which is very useful to help me improve. Although the programme was pretty intense we kept on upping the pace. I acquired useful data especially during the simulations in the last few days.”
“I did a huge amount of work on my physical fitness [during the winter] and that’s not going to stop as I’ll continue all year. I also improved my driving and my mental state in order to progress. In testing the accent was placed on qualifying as it’s the key throughout the season.”
Despite only being 19 years of age, the Frenchman from Limoges has competed in numerous racing categories, but it was the World Endurance Championship that also caught his imagination.
“After racing in the Dubai 24 Hours in a Porsche 911 GT3R I’m now going to take part in the World Endurance Championship in a Porsche GT3 RSR entered by ProSpeed. I had my first taste of it at the official tests on the Paul Ricard circuit. I felt at home straight away and I set the fastest time on the second day in the LM GTE Am category.
“I can’t wait to discover the Le Mans 24 Hours. I’m very happy with my team and my team-mates. I will be driving with François Perodo who has put his trust in me, and Emmanuel Collard one of the benchmarks in terms of experience, set-ups, racing and strategy.”