Former F1 world champion Jenson Button announces surprise return to racing
Former Formula One world champion Jenson Button is getting back behind the wheel after entering next year’s World Endurance Championship.
The 43-year-old, who won the F1 title in 2009 with Brawn and competed in over 300 grands prix, has signed up with Hertz Team JOTA and will drive a Porsche 963 in the top hypercar class.
Button competed in the Le Mans 24-hour race earlier this year and appeared in the 2018-19 WEC for SMP Racing, but has now agreed to commit to a full eight-date season.
He told www.fiawec.com: “I’m excited to be racing with Hertz Team JOTA in the 2024 World Endurance Championship alongside my team-mates Oliver Rasmussen and Phil Hanson. Both already have a lot of experience in endurance racing and that is key.
“Endurance racing is about teamwork and there is no better team than Hertz Team JOTA to be taking on the big manufacturers in hypercars. I’m already looking forward to the first race in Qatar but also know there’s a lot of work to be done so that we arrive prepared.”
Frederic Lequien, chief executive of WEC, welcomed the addition of a high-profile competitor to his roster.
“It’s an honour to have Jenson Button – a hugely successful driver across many racing disciplines – competing full-time in the WEC next year,” he said.
“With nine manufacturers in the hypercar category next year including star names such as Jenson confirmed on the grid, everything is now in place for the WEC to have its most spectacular season yet.”
The 2024 campaign will see Alpine, BMW and Lamborghini also begin hypercar programmes, with Aston Martin joining in 2025. Round one of the 2024 FIA WEC season takes place in Qatar, in Doha, on March 1.
Story by Press Association