Exiled F1 driver Kamui Kobayashi could head to endurance racing

It seems that Kamui Kobayashi could land himself a racing gig after all, despite his own claims that he held no interest in racing anything other than Formula 1 machinery.

The Japanese driver has secured a test drive opportunity with the AF Corse sports car team this week, leading to suggestions that the former Toyota and Sauber racer could be heading off to endurance racing in 2013 while he plots his return to Formula 1.

The likes of Jean Alesi, Gianmaria Bruni and Giancarlo Fisichella have all driven for the AF-Corse TeamKobayashi was left without a Formula 1 drive after being replaced by Sauber test driver Esteban Gutiérrez, and his hopes of remaining on the grid came to naught as the few remaining seats were quickly claimed by better-funded drivers. This was despite a popular and well-publicised campaign by his fans to raise funds towards securing him an F1 seat.

The AF Corse Ferrari team has been something of a haven for ex-F1 drivers. It currently fields Giancarlo Fisichella and Gianmaria Bruni in its line-up, having also had Jean Alesi on its books.

Karun ChandhokKobayashi will be joined at the test by another ex-F1 driver in the form of Karun Chandhok. The Indian already has a season of sports car racing under his belt when he co-drove for the JRM LMP1 team (pictured right).

However, the British outfit has been forces to call time on its endurance racing ambitions after it too fell victim to the funding troubles afflicting motorsport globally.

Kobayashi and Chandhok would essentially be competing for the remaining driver role behind the wheel of the GT-class Ferrari 458 as team-mate to Bruni and Fisichella.

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.