For Brice Gaillardon, race engineer on the #94 PEUGEOT 9X8 crewed by Loïc Duval, James Rossiter and Gustavo Menezes, the priority is clear: slotting all the pieces of the puzzle into place to turn Team Peugeot TotalEnergies into a winning force in 2023.
“Every time we race, the aim is to win,” says Brice Gaillardon, mirroring both his personal commitment to the project and the ambitions of Peugeot Sport upon its return to endurance racing. Confessing that patience is “not one of his chief strengths”, the race engineer on the #94 PEUGEOT 9X8 adds: “The very reason we are competing this year is to prepare ourselves as effectively as possible for achieving strong results in 2023.”
Boasting broad experience in motorsport – with a career that has taken in single-seater racing, Le Mans and Formula E – this graduate of Lyon’s École Centrale inherited his passion for the sport from his parents, as well as from the region in which he grew up, Occitanie, where there is a strong tradition of rallying and hillclimbs. And, like his close friend, two-time Le Mans winner Romain Dumas, Brice has lost his heart to France’s twice-around-the-clock classic.
The Frenchman is accordingly as determined as Team Peugeot TotalEnergies to win Le Mans’ headlining Hypercar category in the race’s centenary edition next year – up against several extremely high-calibre rivals. He has been involved in the project since the very first tests of Peugeot’s ground-breaking new prototype, and is on duty whenever the car takes to the track.
“I couldn’t imagine not being there when the car runs, be that in testing or at races,” he admits. “My role is to liaise between the different groups, from the engineers and mechanics to the drivers themselves. It’s as much about nurturing human relationships as developing the technical side. In every successful race team, both of these aspects are vital.”