Anthony Davidson has been dropped by Toyota from its full-season line-up in the FIA World Endurance Championship, making way for Formula 1 star Fernando Alonso.
Toyota confirmed on Tuesday that two-time F1 world champion Alonso would be joining its LMP1 team for the 2018/18 WEC 'super season', entering the 24 Hours of Le Mans and three additional races that do not clash with his McLaren commitments.
Alonso will race alongside Sebastien Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima in the #8 Toyota TS050 Hybrid, replacing Davidson, who has raced in every WEC season so far for Toyota, winning the drivers' title in 2014. Davidson will remain part of the Toyota fold, though, taking up the role of reserve and test driver for the team.
The #7 Toyota's line-up will remain unchanged for the new season, with Jose Maria Lopez, Mike Conway and Kamui Kobayashi all returning.
“I am looking forward to seeing how much Toyota Gazoo Racing will grow when our drivers and all team members take what they have learned thus far in endurance racing and add to it what they will gain from Fernando’s experience," Toyota president Akio Toyoda said.
"The entire team is excited about this opportunity for growth. Through the challenge of WEC endurance races and, among those, on the grueling roads of the Le Mans 24 Hours, Toyota Gazoo Racing will do its best, together with Fernando, to outdrive the competition."
Toyota will be the sole manufacturer racing in the WEC's LMP1 class through the super season, which starts on May 6 with the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps.