Toyota Gazoo Racing has headhunted Thomas Laurent for the upcoming FIA World Endurance Championship season.
It won’t however be as part of the race team – at least not from the outset – that the 21 year-old Frenchman will add to the team. Instead he is hired as test- and reserve driver.
Laurent has already gotten his first taste of the team, when he tested a TS050 Hybrid in Bahrain, following the season finale in 2017. Back then, he had just finished his debut season in the FIA WEC at Jackie Chan DC Racing in LMP2, where he finished second in the championship – including a victory at Le Mans.
He was picked up by Rebellion Racing for the LMP1 programme, and was a part of the winning crew at Silverstone in August 2018, when Toyota Gazoo Racing got both cars disqualified due to excessive wear on the plank on both cars.
He currently sits third in the drivers championship, but no longer has a chance of winning the title, since Toyota already has such a gap that it’s just a question weather #7 og #8 takes the title.
Laurent had his sportscar debut in winter 2015/16, when he raced for DC Racing in the Asian Le Mans Series. He has since then raced in the European Le Mans Series and the Daytona 24 Hours in the USA.
Today’s press release doesn’t mention if he is allowed to race for other FIA WEC teams in 2019/20 or if he has to be standby all the time, in case that Toyota Gazoo Racing needs him.
With those news made public, it’s clear that the team has slowly said goodbye to Anthony Davidson, who has been in that role since fall 2017. Davidson has been allowed to race for DragonSpeed in LMP2 i 2018/19 in the FIA WEC – at least post Le Mans 2018.
Thomas Laurent will still be racing the Rebellion Racing #3 when the 24 Hours of Le Mans 2019 starts in just over two weeks’ time.