Hartley to drive Mercedes F1 car at Goodwood

Brendon Hartley

Brendon Hartley

New Zealander Brendon Hartley will get his first taste of a Mercedes F1 car at the Goodwood Festival of Speed this weekend.

The 22-year-old has spent the last 12 months working on the team’s simulator program, but has yet to drive one of the squads actual cars.

Current F1 pilots Jenson Button, Lewis Hamilton, Nico Rosberg and Heikki Kovalainen are all expected to make an appearance at Goodwood, with Red Bull, Ferrari, McLaren, Lotus and Caterham joining Mercedes in supplying cars.

Hartley, who who will be handed a 2011 model Mercedes W02 for his runs, says he’s looking forward to the June 30-July 1st event.

“It will be a fantastic experience to not only drive up the hill at Goodwood for the first time, but also to have my first taste of the Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 car,” said Hartley.

“I have worked with the team closely developing their car, but driving the real thing will be a treat. I cannot wait.”

Hartley’s previously enjoyed F1 miles with Red Bull Racing and Scuderia Toro Rosso before the Austrian energy drink company dropped him from its young driver program during the 2010 season.

Hartley finished seventh in a full-time Formula Renault 3.5 campaign last year, before switching to the World Endurance Championship with LMP2 class team Murphy Prototypes for 2012.

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