'I couldn't be happier' - Kiwi Brendon Hartley handed Formula One drivers role with Toro Rosso for 2018 season

Things keep getting better and better for Kiwi motorsport, with driver Brendon Hartley confirmed as a Toro Rosso driver for the 2018 Formula One season.

Hartley, 27, has had a whirlwind last few months, making his F1 debut at the US Grand Prix in Austin in October to become the first Kiwi in 33 years to race alongside Europe's best, before also taking part in the Mexican and Brazillian Grand Prix's.

The Kiwi driver impressed on his F1 debut in Texas, starting 19th on the grid before earning a creditable 13th placed finish, however mechanical issues have seen him unable to finish either of his next two races.

The Kiwi driver is hoping for a deal with Toro Rosso after his debut at the US Grand Prix in Austin this morning. Source: 1 NEWS

In a statement made via Toro Rosso's official Twitter account, Hartley spoke of his delight in achieving his F1 dream.

"Really amazing to be confirmed as a Formula 1 driver next year with Toro Rosso," he said.

"It's very satisfying to have converted an opportunity that came as a surprise into a 2018 F1 drive, I couldn't be happier."

Hartley will be partnered by France's Pierre Gasly as Toro Rosso's top two drivers for the 2018 season.

The Kiwi driver again impressed before engine troubles saw him out of the race. Source: 1 NEWS


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Not again! Kiwi Brendon Hartley forced to retire from second straight F1 race after more engine problems

Kiwi Formula 1 driver Brendon Hartley has been forced to finish his race early once again after his car encountered more engine problems during the Brazilian Grand Prix in Sao Paulo this morning.

Hartley was sitting 17th in the race when his crew informed him the car had to be brought in for engine issues - something which has plagued Hartley's team Toro Rosso over the last month.

It is the second consecutive race Hartley has had to retire from due to the fault after his car caught fire two weeks ago in the Mexican Grand Prix.

But the Kiwi showed more signs of his potential, reaching as high as 12th place before exiting on the 41st lap.

Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel won this morning's race.