Following his axe from Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda, Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow have signed Brendon Hartley as a simulator driver for the 2019 season.
Double World Endurance champion Hartley failed to retain his seat with the Red Bull-backed side following a difficult 2018 that saw him score just four points, leaving him penultimate in the Drivers’ Championship, four places and 25 points shy of team-mate Pierre Gasly.
After 25 races in Formula 1 Hartley makes way for Alexander Albon, with ex-Ferrari development driver Daniil Kvyat returning to Toro Rosso for the promoted Gasly.
The New Zealander completes Ferrari’s four-strong simulator line-up for 2019, announced in full today.
Hartley, Mahindra Formula E driver Pascal Wehrlein and current Ferrari Academy member Antonio Fuoco join mainstay and works Ferrari GT driver Davide Rigon in a new-look line-up.
Kvyat and Antonio Giovinazzi‘s promotions to full-time Formula 1 seats for 2019, with Toro Rosso and Alfa Romeo Racing respectively, left Ferrari short on numbers in a department that new team principal Mattia Binotto described as “vital” to the success of the team.
“Our team has taken on four undoubtedly talented drivers, who possess innate feeling, with a strong understanding of race cars and tracks,” said Binotto.
“These are exactly the qualities required in the skilful role of driving in a simulator.”