When the 1000 Miles of Sebring runs on 15 March, the familiar face of Brendon Hartley will back in the FIA World Endurance Championship.
The now former Formula 1 driver from New Zealand has signed with SMP Racing, where he will run the race at Sebring plus the 6 Hours of Spa Francorchamps.
His teammates will be the former Indycar driver Mikhail Aleshin and the former Formula 1 driver Vitaly Petrov in car #11. He replaces Jenson Button, who won’t be running these two race meetings, since he will focus on his Super GT programme in Japan. Button will be back in the car at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Hartley is a double World Champion with Porsche in LMP1, where he won the title in the FIA WEC in both 2015 and 2017. He won his only Le Mans so far in 2017.
He got the call from the Scuderia Toro Rosso Formula 1 team in late 2017. He finished the season off in both series, while 2018 was a Formula 1-only year. But the luck and speed weren’t on his side, so he didn’t get the contract extended for 2019.
He was announced as a new simulator driver for Scuderia Ferrari just recently, as well as continuing to be a Porsche works driver.
Brendon Hartley has also raced sportscars in both the European Le Mans Series and the IMSA championship.
The 1000 Miles of Sebring will be run on the Friday, while the traditional 12 hours race will be on the Saturday.