Brendon Hartley Secures Ferrari Development Role

Brendon Hartely Ferrari Deal.jpg

Brendon Hartley has signed as Simulation driver for Ferrari this season, continuing his links with Grand Prix racing following his axe from the Italian Toro Rosso team.


Hartley, a former double World Champion in World Endurance racing with Porsche, has yet to confirm his racing plans for 2019 following an acrimonious split from Toro Rosso at the end of 2018, however it looks like the Kiwi is sure to busy as he steps into the Ferrari development role for the current season, filling the void at the Scuderia left by Sauber bound Antonio Giovinazzi and his replacement at Toro Rosso, Russian Formula One returnee Daniil Kvyat.

Hartley, 29, joins new recruits Pascal Wehrlein and Formula Two driver Antonio Fuoco alongside Blancpain GT Series race winner Davide Rigon as simulation driver, bolstering an area of the Formula One outfit that Team Principal Mattia Binotto considers "one of the vital pieces of equipment in the Formula 1 of today".

Although a feather in the cap of the talented Kiwi driver, it is expected that Hatley will look to secure a full time race seat outside of Formula One to complement his new role, with several high profile endurance teams thought to be keen to secure the services of the former WEC champion and Le Mans 24 Hour race winner.

For more from the world of Formula One, head over to the RaceDepartment Formula One sub forum and join in with fellow fans of the top level of open wheel motorsport.

Like what we do at RaceDepartment? Follow us on Social Media!



 
 
RaceDepartment Editor-in-Chief, occasional YouTuber, commentator and broadcaster, with a passion for motorsport on both the real and virtual racetrack.

snyperal

500RPM
Mar 26, 2015
858
253
41
I might be wrong and I wish him well but I just don't think he's good enough.
 

Andrew Harper

2000RPM
Dec 1, 2014
2,580
1,922
46
I might be wrong and I wish him well but I just don't think he's good enough.
I kind of agree with you in some way but he is a brilliant sports car driver. Fast and reliable. You don’t lose skills like that.

So it’s not that he’s not good enough I think sometimes team and driver just don’t gell.

I was listening to a brilliant interview with Serbastian Bordais some time ago and his experiences of being in f1 with Torro Rosso. He described it as one of the worst times of his life. The team was full of politics, the engineers wouldn’t accept any feedback from him as they all rely on the data. He found the whole experience miserable. It was a refreshingly honest interview (but without being nasty). Comes back to Indycar (where feedback from the driver is still a big plus) and less of the political you know what and he’s back on form and far happier for it. Good for him.

Torro Rosso hasn’t changed, it’s still a political hotbed of trouble for any driver who’s not ready for it and it still chews up drivers year in and year out.

I’m not defending Brendon but he’s a lot better than his results in F1 showed.

Like you I wish him all the best, I’m hoping we’ll see him back in maybe WEC or even indycar in 2019.
 
  • Like
Reactions: HK2014 and Slowdive

Durge Driven

2000RPM
Jun 17, 2017
2,453
1,455
From what I can see Gasly earned them 2.5M pounds more in constructors prize money around the same amount they lost this year finishing 8th ( 7th in 2017 )

If they had 2 Brendon's they could have finished behind Williams losing another 2.5M, more then the 2 drivers are worth.
 

Enagee

500RPM
Oct 15, 2010
615
575
Or maybe he can be a Simulation test driver for sim titles , he"ll be a superstar here :p.... Wish him the best
 

Nick Hill

1000RPM
Premium
Oct 26, 2013
1,275
1,699
40
I kind of agree with you in some way but he is a brilliant sports car driver. Fast and reliable. You don’t lose skills like that.

So it’s not that he’s not good enough I think sometimes team and driver just don’t gell.

I was listening to a brilliant interview with Serbastian Bordais some time ago and his experiences of being in f1 with Torro Rosso. He described it as one of the worst times of his life. The team was full of politics, the engineers wouldn’t accept any feedback from him as they all rely on the data. He found the whole experience miserable. It was a refreshingly honest interview (but without being nasty). Comes back to Indycar (where feedback from the driver is still a big plus) and less of the political you know what and he’s back on form and far happier for it. Good for him.

Torro Rosso hasn’t changed, it’s still a political hotbed of trouble for any driver who’s not ready for it and it still chews up drivers year in and year out.

I’m not defending Brendon but he’s a lot better than his results in F1 showed.

Like you I wish him all the best, I’m hoping we’ll see him back in maybe WEC or even indycar in 2019.
Not disagreeing with you, because I think you make some really good points, but I am also going to raise my opinion that it's entirely possible to be devilishly quick in sports cars and hopeless in an F1 seat. I just think there are more ways to be quick/useful in a sports car seat...F1 is highly specialized with very little room for creativity. That doesn't mean F1 drivers are better or sports car drivers are better, they are just different disciplines.

An analogy I like to make based on RD's 2nd favorite topic: American sports! It's like basketball vs football. In basketball, there is tremendous diversity in skillsets. You can have 2 great players achieving greatness playing exact the same position, but with wildly different skillsets. In football, the individual position skillsets are so ridiculously specific, it becomes much closer to a binary "you can or you can't" situation. It doesn't mean basketball players are better athletes than football players (or vice versa), it's just that football players have to shoehorn themselves into much narrower skillset requirements.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Andrew Harper

InsaneOzzie

2000RPM
Feb 2, 2010
2,088
928
Theres a big difference between an F1 and a WEC sports car, some drivers just don't have the edge to perform at F1 standards, which is why many who want to go to F1 start out in karts and stay in open wheeled cars as it hones that skill set. Coming from essentially a purpose built tin top hybrid to an F1 would be a big learning curve imo, with many differences between the two categories, a year in an F1 cockpit doesn't strike me as long enough to learn & sharpen a new skill set, and Torro Rosso aren't exactly the easiest team to gel with at the best of times, it seems like TR expected Brendon to perform at peek ability without giving him time to adjust to the different driving style needed for an F1 car. Wish him the best in the future, it's a tough merry-go-round in the F1 paddock.
 

Terry Rock

2000RPM
Oct 24, 2009
2,748
1,623
Unless you've had a few seasons behind the scene with these new cars, it tends to be a tough place to get 'thrown' head-first into.
They're a completely different 'animal'.
I've been here for a lot of Formula1 racing...since 1971 to be exact.
The F1 cars of old were 'brutish...grab them by the scruff less they turn and try to kill you' type of cars.
These are difficult in their own right...lots of ERS management coupled with strategy to get the best timing deployment when it counts.
Hartley did not really have the benefit of time when he got the call, so I too believe the results do not accurately highlight his ability.
 

Dirk Steffen

Porsche Factory Jackass™
Premium
Jul 30, 2016
1,871
1,152
It is such an incredible waste of immense talent to put this man in such a job. I so wish that he gets a seat in a Porsche GTE car full season. That is were he belongs and were his talents are. He is a world class driver in that field. It hurts me to see his prime years wasted as a paperboy in F1.
 

wombat999

500RPM
Premium
Oct 11, 2015
722
408
67
A wasted talent indeed.
Would really like to see him in a decent GT3 car and racing at the Bathurst 12 hour next year.
STR and RBR really have no place in F1, their turnover of drivers is ridiculous and the only reason an 'Energy Drink' maker is involved is publicity. Despite my lack of enthusiasm for F1 at least the main players (FIAT-Benz-Renault) are car manufacturers in their own right.
Wishful thinking but how about a Ferrari factory GT team headed up by Hartley?
 

headder

75RPM
May 1, 2017
94
49
31
A wasted talent indeed.
Would really like to see him in a decent GT3 car and racing at the Bathurst 12 hour next year.
STR and RBR really have no place in F1, their turnover of drivers is ridiculous and the only reason an 'Energy Drink' maker is involved is publicity. Despite my lack of enthusiasm for F1 at least the main players (FIAT-Benz-Renault) are car manufacturers in their own right.
Wishful thinking but how about a Ferrari factory GT team headed up by Hartley?
Propably they will give him few chances to race in GTLM :)
 

headder

75RPM
May 1, 2017
94
49
31
A guy probably simply had the most unlucky year in F1 it could have possibly been.
Yeah... Especially that his is not an amateur. But the team tactics and putting everything on Gasly, took away a lot of points from Brendon...
 

mantasisg

2000RPM
Premium
Apr 4, 2015
2,235
2,677
29
To me F1 is a joke for many little details like that. Everything adds up, and it simply becomes unrelatable.
 

Andrew Harper

2000RPM
Dec 1, 2014
2,580
1,922
46
Not disagreeing with you, because I think you make some really good points, but I am also going to raise my opinion that it's entirely possible to be devilishly quick in sports cars and hopeless in an F1 seat. I just think there are more ways to be quick/useful in a sports car seat...F1 is highly specialized with very little room for creativity. That doesn't mean F1 drivers are better or sports car drivers are better, they are just different disciplines.
Yes modern F1 cars are certainly very different animals now. At the moment they still require elements of looking after whereas before the hybrid era they were more or less flat out all the time. Since the engine, gearbox, fuel and tyre limitations, some drivers shine more than others. Lewis being a prime example.

It's probably easier the other way around. Mark Webber made some comments about when he drove the 919 alongside Hartley. He was surprised that they were flat out all the time now (ok there's an element of the lift and coast for the hybrids but you know what I mean). Something that he had to get used to again after the strategic nature of looking after an F1 car.

Like you say some drivers shine brilliantly in one discipline more than another. However he must have very good technical feedback if Ferrari have pounced on him for this role. Which says something about his ability at least :)
 

Eckhart von Glan

6000RPM
Premium
Dec 29, 2006
6,478
1,929
i suppose there are at least four drivers out there for every formula one seat where most of us would not be able to tell the difference. there seems to be a miniscule group of the ubertalented (hamilton, vettel, verstappen + 3 or so more) while everyone else is on a more or less even talent level. To me it seems to be pure chance which factors at which time make you seem a good choice or not. i used to play sim-games with a belgian (?) chap who'd won the formule renault europe trophy and been invited to test the 3.5litre beast. he beat erikson, who was invited, too, that day but things never got together for him and he soon realized this and started at uni, doing a degree in engineering working on - you guessed it: racecars.
 

SVP Skins

250RPM
Apr 15, 2012
423
219
I might be wrong and I wish him well but I just don't think he's good enough.
You don't win the 24 hrs Le Man by not being good enough. Hes proven hes more than good enough, you want to say not good enough, say that about the team he was with, as thats whos to blame for his poor results in F1
 

MrRacer11

100RPM
Jan 6, 2016
140
16
31
Is it me, or does the photo of him on the thread make him look like a really realistic waxwork.

Maybe it's just me.