Speaking for the first time since news of his Toro Rosso axing broke, Brendon Hartley says he still has “plenty more pages to write” in his F1 story.
The New Zealander was officially dropped by the team on Monday, one day after coming home 12th at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
It was a disappointing end, not just to the season but to Hartley’s F1 career.
After months of speculation, Toro Rosso announced on Monday that he will be replaced by Formula 2 driver Alex Albon for next season.
Hartley, though, insists his F1 story isn’t yet over.
“I left the [Yas Marina] circuit on Sunday with my head held high,” Hartley tweeted.
“I’m very proud of my story and my journey so far but I’m left feeling I have unfinished business in F1.
“For the moment, that has been put on hold.
“I’ve hit speed bumps before and I am a strong believer that tough situations make you stronger.
“It also helps that I have a great NZ [New Zealand] support crew, friends, family and wife.
“I also want to thank my trainer Rich and almost all of the 500 strong Toro Rosso staff who I have stood beside and have enjoyed working with this season, all of the engineering team, the mechanics, marketing, PR, logistics, hospitality crew, factory staff and of course all at Honda Racing.
“I really do appreciate the support I have received from fans across the globe this year, I still have plenty more pages to write in my story and I will make the most of the opportunity’s in the next chapter.”