Ex-F1 driver Pastor Maldonado is the latest signing to join the Dragonspeed lineup for the FIA World Endurance Championship 2018/2019 Super Season.
Earlier this morning via Twitter, American endurance outfit Dragonspeed announced that former Williams and Lotus Formula One driver Pastor Maldonado would be joining their LMP2 driver squad, alongside Roberto Gonzalez who was the team’s listed driver at the Super Season launch back in February. Dragonspeed had been linked to another ex-F1 driver Esteban Gutierrez, but the deal reportedly fell through as the team confirmed the Mexican driver would not be racing with them last week.
Very pleased to announce the new addition to our @FIAWEC @24heuresdumans LMP2 driver lineup for the 2018-2019 SUPER SEASON !!! @Oreca @fia @Michelin_Sport @gibsontech1 Check out who 👇🏻#oneteamonedream pic.twitter.com/0xFlCklYHm
— DragonSpeed (@DragonSpeedLLC) March 21, 2018
This will mark the Venezuelan driver’s debut in sportscar racing following an interesting five-year career in Formula One. Maldonado made a name for himself in Formula One not only through results (he won the Spanish Grand Prix with Williams in 2012) but also the sponsorship money he brought to teams and his knack for getting into trouble on track – earning him the nickname ‘Crashtor Maldonado.’ His last full season in F1 was in 2015 and since then, his main driving activities were as a test driver for Pirelli in a GP2 car. The 33-year-old had been spotted at Monza for last season’s FIA WEC Prologue tests, but no race program for him ever materialised.
Dragonspeed are yet to announce their third driver for their Oreca 07 Gibson LMP2 but have already confirmed their LMP1 lineup: Henrik Hedman, Ben Hanley and Renger van der Zande will be piloting the Gibson-powered BR Engineering BR1. However, as we previously reported, due to clashes with IMSA, young Brazillian Pietro Fittipaldi will be subbing for van der Zande at the 6 Hours of Spa-Franchorchamps in May and the 6 Hours of Fuji in October.
Pastor Maldonado will be making his public WEC debut at the Prologue tests at Circuit Paul Ricard, Le Castellet in April.