Hartley: 'Too immature for F1 back in 2010'


Toro Rosso new recruit Brendon Hartley admits he wasn't ready for the big time back in 2010, when he was Red Bull Racing's and the Faenza-based outfit's reserve driver.

Hartley offered some insight on how the opportunity to finally realise his dream of racing in F1 came about, and it all started with Porsche's decision to retire its LMP1 squad for 2018.

"I didn’t 100 per cent see this one coming," Hartley told the New Zealand Herald.

"When Porsche announced they were stopping LMP1 I started trying to figure out where I would be next year.

"One of the first calls I made was to Helmut Marko at Red Bull and I said if there was ever an opportunity I am ready now – I wasn’t eight years ago.

"He got the message but I didn’t hear anything for three or four months and to be honest this came out of the blue this last week."

Hartley admitted that seven years on, the experience of being forced to fend for himself after he was dumped from Red Bull's junior program has made him a better driver.

"It was a long time ago," said the 27-year-old.

"“I went through a tough time. To put it bluntly I just wasn’t ready. I wasn’t mature enough. At that point in my life I was enjoying my racing. For having gone through that I am a lot stronger."

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