The Toyota Gazoo Racing has gone to its bench to bring up Stephane Sarrazin for this weekend’s upcoming 6 Hours of Circuit of The Americas, for what is expected to be the FIA World Endurance Championship’s last trip to Austin, Texas for the foreseeable future (new FIA WEC 2018-2019 “super season” sees Sebring the new U.S. venue in March 2019).
Sarrazin will fill in for Anthony Davidson in the team’s No. 8 Toyota TS050 Hybrid with Toyota citing “personal reasons” for Davidson’s absence.
It will see the Frenchman in alongside Sebastien Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima this weekend, and will also mean Sarrazin will have driven all three Toyotas in the same season. He co-drove with Yuji Kunimoto and Nicolas Lapierre in the team’s third car, the No. 9 car, in Spa and then was switched on a one-off drive to the No. 7 car with Mike Conway and Kamui Kobayashi at Le Mans. Both cars were listed fifth in LMP1 on those occasions, with Le Mans a failure to finish.
He’s also raced for a pair of FIA Formula E Championship teams this past season, Venturi for the first half and then Techeetah the second half from Berlin onwards.
“It’s a surprise to be racing the TS050 HYBRID again this season but I am excited to be back and I’m looking forward to racing with Sébastien, Kazuki and the whole team,” Sarrazin said. I know the Circuit of the Americas well and it’s an impressive circuit, with some great corners. I will give my all to score as many points for the team as possible.”
Sarrazin has two podium finishes at COTA, with second in 2013 and third in 2016 with Toyota.
“Anthony will not be with us this weekend but he has our full support and we look forward to seeing him behind the wheel again,” said Hisatake Murata, Team President. “We are happy that Austin comes so soon after Mexico, which was not a positive race for us. Everyone is pushing to get a better result this week. The drivers are very motivated to get both cars on the podium and win races again; they fought hard in Mexico and never gave up. The whole team has this fighting spirit so we go to Austin with big hopes.”