ByKolles makes driver swap

The ByKolles team, who is racing under the Floyd Vanwall Racing Team banner in 2023, has made some changes to their driver line-up for this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Jacques Villeneuve is no longer part of the team, after a very problematic start to the season.

The Canadian Formula 1 World Champion will be replaced by Tristan Vautier, who has plenty of Prototype experience, but none with the Vanwall Vandervell 680 Hypercar so far. He will be sharing the car with Tom Dillmann and Esteban Guerrieri, who already competed at the first three rounds of the year.

Villeneuve was the absolute slowest driver of the three, and was furthermore unlucky to crash out in Portimao, when a brake disc exploded on the car. He was thankfully able to walk away unharmed.

There was another issue in the race at Spa Francorchamps, where he wasn’t able to close the door, right after leaving the pitlane. So he had to do another pitstop, to get the door shut. When he returned to the track, it only took half an hour until some unfortunate contact with a GTE Am at high speed, and had to retire from the race.

Floyd Vanwall Racing Team #4
Photo: JJ Media

Vautier has plenty of racing experience, no matter if it’s with or without roof. The French driver has primarily raced in the USA, ever since he moved into the junior single seater categories in 2010.

He made it all the way to Indycar, but without any major success. but made a switch to sportscar racing, which has been his primary task for almost 10 years now. He raced in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship for several seasons, before making his Le Mans debut in 2022 for ARC Bratislava in the LMP2 category. He is racing for Algarve Pro Racing in the European Le Mans Series in LMP2 this year, where the car was on its way to secure victory, when it was hit by a competitor.

The 24 Hours of Le Mans 2023 will be run on 10-11 June.

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