Lucas Laville is the reigning 2020 Classic Indycar Series (CIS) Champion. The 27 year old from Paris is set to defend his crown in one of the longest-running leagues on iRacing.
Lucas has one intention: Hunting the double to win this prestigious title again this year.
Ahead of the 12-round 2021 CIS season seven, which begins on 21 March at virtual Philip Island, we took time out to chat to Lucas who began sim racing in 2013 after randomly stumbling on NR2003 and EmptyBox videos on YT; and then iRacing came onto his radar and he has been hooked ever since.
Racing is in his blood no doubt, part of his life as long as he remembers: “I have been into F1 since I was three, and learned to read and count by watching races and calculating time diff myself with my dad hiding the overlays.
“Now I’m also big into IndyCar, WEC, IMSA, NASCAR. I’m trying to learn more about SuperFormula, SuperGT, and WRC, but there is only so much time in one day and so much place in my brain.”
No surprise his real-life racing idols are from France too: “Seb Bourdais is my all-time fav driver, without a doubt. I’ve been a big fan of Dario Franchitti, Scott Dixon in Indy Car too. My “vintage” driver of choice would be Alain Prost.”
Like many, racing these days is prohibitively expensive with many talented drivers never emerging as even karting these days is the playground of drivers with millionaire parents. Sim racing remains an increasingly credible platform for race drivers to be noticed.
Lucas points out that only the rich have a shot at real racing:
“I have been a racing fan for so long, and racing is so damn expensive that sim racing is the best way to enjoy what racing is like, without the costs and risks of injury.
“I do some karting sporadically when possible, but I’m nowhere near the level of the kids that have been doing this for years. And with my natural ballast, it would be hard to catch up to them anyway.”
Thus iRacing and CIS are where Lucas struts his stuff and heads into the new season as the driver to beat.
“I’ve been racing in CIS ever since I could,” he explained. “The IR05 was my car of choice back when it was still the IndyCar used in official racing here. The league has been doing great since it started, and I’m pleased to be working with Robert as a co-admin since 2017.”
As for his winning season last year, Lucas reflected: “I think race management was my biggest strength last year. I was able to be quick while managing fuel better than most, as well as remaining consistent through all races.
“I still have things I want to clean up, especially under cold tires, and with sporadic loss of focus at some points. Overall pace needs to be better as always.”
As for what he expects in 2021, he predicted: “So many drivers have been getting stronger the last few years that I feel that the 2021 title is the hardest to predict. The obvious choice would be Joshua Chin. He was the fastest out there on many occasions, and his car and setup knowledge is second to none in the field.
“Robert will always be a threat, consistent and safe as he is while remaining quick. New teammate Marshall Stanley will be a direct competitor for me every week. Guys like Randy Shewmake, Johnny Garrett, Andrew Wood, Andrew Aitken have picked up the pace and have legitimate chances to win on pace at a lot of places.”
However this does not deter the Champion as the double is very much on the cards: “The plan is to go back to back, obviously! The schedule looks okay for me, with tracks that I like such as Long Beach and Motegi. Consistency will be key though, being upfront at all times will be a huge factor, whether on-road or oval.”
The driver roster for this season with a 40-plus waiting list of drivers keen to partake in the series which will have live coverage from Racespot.TV as well as enhanced media coverage through partnerships with relevant service providers.
Final word to the defending Champ: “I want to give a massive shoutout to all CIS drivers, past and present. They are the ones making CIS a great place to race on Sundays. A friendly environment to chat about racing, sim racing or other random stuff. Without them, CIS wouldn’t be what it is today for sure.”
2020 Classic Indycar Series Overview
448 pts – Lucas Laville ROAD Champion (231 pts)
434 pts – Robert Grosser
419 pts – Joshua Chin OVAL Champion (230 pts)
294 pts – Jamie Wilson
275 pts – Andrew Wood
267 pts – Randy Shewmake
259 pts – Josh Baird
239 pts – Johnny Garrett
231 pts – Jan Hoffmann
Rookie of the Year
1022 pts – Vortex SimRacing
910 pts – Team Chimera
634 pts – Iconic Motorsports
607 pts – “independent”
527 pts – Aero-X
4 Lucas Laville (Sebring, Brands Hatch, New Hampshire, Zandvoort)