Porsche factory driver Estre had an amazing year. He sealed the GTE Pro crown in the 2018/19 World Endurance Championship, won the Spa 24 Hours and might have won the Nurburgring 24 Hours with a bit less misfortune.
Much of Estre and Michael Christensen's hard work over their WEC superseason campaign was done last year. They didn't win any of the three rounds in 2019, though bad luck (a penalty at Sebring and an exhaust issue at Le Mans) and a conservative fuel strategy at Spa when the title was within reach had a lot to do with that. Estre did, however, win a race he wasn't expected to.
The Frenchman, Christensen and Richard Lietz triumphed against the odds aboard the GPX Racing team's Porsche in horrendous conditions in the Blancpain GT Series blue riband round at Spa in July. The performance in Belgium summed up Estre's talents. Ultra-consistent, he was blindingly fast when he needed to — he came from third to first in the closing stages — and didn't make any mistakes.
If I have to choose between the Nurburgring 24 Hours and the Spa 24 Hours, I'd have to go for Spa. We got the result we wanted and I think it probably was my best performance of the year. There wasn't much pressure on us before the race, because we were there as a bit of a joker for Porsche. But in a race in those conditions, there is always a lot of pressure.
It was a very hard race mentally because it was about finding the right risk level: you can look like a hero very quickly and then look extremely stupid just as quickly. I believe I found the right compromise for the conditions at the right time. We had a clean race and didn't make any mistakes. It was all about surviving and then pushing at the end. I started my last double stint P3, overtook two guys and we won.