Ex-Formula 1 champion Jenson Button will race for the SMP Racing LMP1 team in the 2018/19 FIA World Endurance Championship season, starting with this year's Le Mans 24 Hours.
Button will make his WEC debut in the French endurance classic in one of SMP's two AER-powered, Dallara-built BR1s alongside Russian duo Vitaly Petrov and Mikhail Aleshin.
It follows his first steps into sportscar racing with Honda in Super GT, which Button is contesting full-time this season after making his debut in last year's Suzuka 1000km.
"As you can imagine it's always been a dream of mine to race at Le Mans, I think it's every driver's dream to take part and hopefully go on to clinch that win at Le Mans, and I'm definitely no different," said the 2009 F1 champion.
"My teammates will be Aleshin and Petrov, who I know very well from his racing in F1, and Mikhail from his IndyCar exploits.
"We go to Le Mans to fight for the win. Every driver aims to win every race they go in for, but I think we really do have a good chance of being competitive at Le Mans."
Button is expected to contest every race on the 2018/19 WEC schedule with the exception of next week's Spa opener, which partially clashes with the Fuji Super GT round.
Petrov and Aleshin will race at Spa as a duo, while Stephane Sarrazin, Matevos Isaakyan and Egor Orudzhev form the line-up in the sister #17 BR1-AER.
Button's signing completes the LMP1 grid for Le Mans, which is as follows:
|1||Rebellion Racing||Rebellion R13-Gibson|| |
|3||Rebellion Racing||Rebellion R13-Gibson|| |
|4||ByKolles Racing Team||ENSO CLM P1/01-Nismo|| |
|5||Manor TRSM Racing||Ginetta G60-LT-P1-Mecachrome|| |
|6||Manor TRSM Racing||Ginetta G60-LT-P1-Mecachrome|| |
|7||Toyota Racing||Toyota TS050 Hybrid|| |
Jose Maria Lopez
|8||Toyota Racing||Toyota TS050 Hybrid|| |
Renger van der Zande
|11||SMP Racing||BR1-AER|| |
|17||SMP Racing||BR1-AER|| |
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