It seems that this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans will have its fair share of Formula 1 megastars, as Jenson Button has landed a drive with SMP Racing’s LMP1 squad.
The 2009 F1 champion will partner with Vitaly Petrov and Mikhail Aleshin in the Russian-backed team in his first Le Mans ever. By racing in LMP1, he will go head-to-head with former teammate and current Formula 1 driver Fernando Alonso, who has signed up with the Toyota Gazoo Racing team.
“As you can imagine it has been a dream of mine to race at Le Mans,” Button said. “It is every driver’s dream to go on and clinch that win and I am no different. My team-mates for this year will be Mikhail and Vitaly Petrov, who I know very well from his racing in Formula One.”
The 2018 race will take place on the 16th and 17th of June. Button has also signed on to race for SMP Racing at the 6 Hours of Silverstone on August 19.
“We have a really good chance of being competitive at Le Mans. First of all it is survival, and then you see where you are after the 24 hours and hopefully we will be fighting for that victory,” Button added.
Button is currently competing in Japan’s Super GT championship, contesting the top-level GT500 class in a Honda NSX-GT alongside Naoki Yamamoto. The duo finished second in their first outing together at the Okayama International Circuit in early April.