GT Academy winner bags LMP2 seat

2014 GT Academy winner Gaetan Paletou has been given the chance of a lifetime to race in LMP2 at the famous 24-hour race next weekend. With only nine months of experience racing predominantly GT cars, Paletou is the latest graduate of Nissan’s fabled gaming-to-racing training programme that has produced current LMP1 drivers Lucas Ordonez, Mark Shulzhitskiy and Jann Mardenbrough. The Frenchman will compete in the #41 Greaves Motorsport Gibson 0155-Nissan.

Announced on Nissan’s YouTube channel, Paletou is the least-experienced GT Academy to race at Le Mans. The likes of Ordonez and Mardenbrough spent several seasons gathering experience in various series all over the world, including GT3 and GT4, while Paletou’s racing experience is limited to 24 races at Dubai and Silverstone and LMP testing. After victory in last year’s GT Academy, the Frenchman impressed in testing LMP2s during the winter and soon found himself in an LMP3 car with Team LNT at the Silverstone 24 Hours. It was with Team LNT’s Ginetta-Nissan LM3 car that Paletou also completed his 10 required “rookie laps” at Test Day.

Now the latest GT Academy graduate has been given the chance to compete at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the Nissan-engined Greaves Motorsport Gibson 0155, replacing Björn Wirdheim. Paletou certainly has a lot to live up to, with previous GT Academy graduates excelling almost without exception in their respective LMP2 debuts. He will partner with Swiss driver Gary Hirsch and gold driver Jon Lancaster from the UK. “He’s done such a good job,” said Nissan’s Global Motorsport Director Darren Cox. “The training he’s had has been excellent and we’re confident that he can do a good job for us at Le Mans.”

Watch the moment Gaetan is told in the video below:

Via: Nissan Nismo-tv (Youtube)
Image source: WEC-Magazin (Walter Schruff)