Loic Duval has been announced as the final member of ORECA's squad for its Peugeot LMP1 program this year.
Hugues de Chaunac's team has completed a deal to run the Peugeot 908 HDi FAP in the Le Mans Series and the Le Mans 24 Hours. Regular drivers Olivier Panis and Nicolas Lapierre will contest the full season, with Duval joining them for Le Mans and the eight-hour LMS opener at Paul Ricard. He will also run in this weekend's LMS test at the French track.
Duval previously raced for ORECA at Le Mans in 2008, and in last winter's Asian Le Mans Series event at Okayama. The 27-year-old Frenchman now mainly competes in Japan, where he won last year's Formula Nippon title.
"The engineers appreciate him and he always does a very good job - especially at Okayama, which was a test for him but he didn't know it!" said de Chaunac. "He fits into a team without problems and he's already worked with Olivier and Nicolas. That's what tipped the scales in his favor."
Duval said the chance to race the LMP1 Peugeot was a career-defining moment for him.
"When Hugues de Chaunac said to me that I'd be doing Le Mans, I was delighted but I though it would be in the ORECA 01," he said. "Then when he told me I'd be driving the Peugeot, I felt over the moon! "You can spend your whole career waiting for an opportunity like this. I know just how important this program is for the whole team and it's a real sign of confidence in me. Even though there are a whole lot of special factors to cope with I can't wait to drive the beast."