Brendon Hartley says after a tough introduction to his Formula 1 career he is keen to “prove my worth” in the sport with the new-look Toro Rosso Honda squad in 2018.

The New Zealand driver endured grid drop penalties for engine changes at every race he contested for Toro Rosso at the end of 2017 with a best result of 13th place coming on his F1 debut at the United States Grand Prix. Having constantly battled on the backfoot while trying to get up to speed in the STR12 with the Pirelli tyres, Hartley confessed it was a tricky four races but feels he can use that experience and his World Endurance Championship title with Porsche to produce a stronger start in 2018.

“I’m hearing a lot of positive things out of Toro Rosso and out of Honda,” Hartley said. “I can’t wait to work alongside them next year, and hopefully prove my worth in Formula 1. It was obviously very sad this project [with Porsche] came to an end. Porsche gave me a huge break those four years ago. It’s been an incredible journey. As I said before, I guess we’re all sad that it came to a close, but on the other hand we feel like we achieved a lot, and it was probably time that the chapter was finished.”

Hartley rounded out a frantic 2017 at the F1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix having started his campaign back in January at the Rolex 24 at Dayton for Tequila Patron ESM in the WeatherTech SportsCar championship. After two outings for ESM, Hartley got his full WEC season underway which was highlighted by victory at Le Mans 24 Hours before combining his efforts for the final four F1 races. Next year Hartley will solely focus on F1 with Toro Rosso Honda alongside Pierre Gasly.