Mark Webber has completed his first test for Porsche in preparation for the return of the German marque’s LMP1 programme in 2014 that will see the Australian driver race in Le Mans for the first time since 1999.
The Australian driver was able to partake in the test at the Autódromo Internacional do Algarve in Portimao today after Red Bull agreed to release him from his contract early. Following eleven successful years in Formula One, Webber decided that the time was right to walk away from Formula One and take on a new challenge with Porsche.
“My first day in this fascinating project was an intense experience for me and I would like to thank Red Bull Racing for giving me the chance to join the project so early,” Webber explained.”This is a major and important step for us all. It allows me to integrate with the team quicker and to contribute to further developing the LMP1 race car.”
He then took to Twitter to confirm that he had tested in Portugal, simply tweeting: “Next chapter. Enjoyed driving her today,” with a picture of the car to accompany the message.
Webber will make his debut for Porsche at the opening round of the World Endurance Championship at Silverstone on April 20th, where he will race alongside one-time Toro Rosso test driver Neel Jani and one other driver. This seat is widely expect to be filled by Brendon Hartley following a test at Monza at the beginning of November.
Webber will then grace the Circuit de la Sarthe in June for the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic.