2009 Formula 1 world champion Jenson Button will partner with GT team RJN Motorsport to field a Honda NSX GT3 Evo in the 2019 Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup Silver category under the “Jenson Team Rocket RJN” banner. The team could add a second car for the 24 Hours of Spa in July.
Jenson’s late father, John Button, founded the Rocket Motorsport team in karting, winning 11 British championships in junior categories and helping to promote not only the talent of his son, but numerous others including Lewis Hamilton, Will Stevens, Oliver Rowland and James Calado.
“It’s great to be a part of this exciting new chapter with RJN and to bring the Rocket name back into racing,” said Button. “I’m sure a number of current drivers remember Rocket from back in their karting days and I hope we can use this platform to help with new young talent in GT and endurance racing.
“As a Honda Ambassador, I’m pleased to be a part of something that brings the Honda NSX to the Blancpain GT Series and I’m looking forward to seeing this project evolve.”
Created 20 years ago, RJN Motorsport have run a variety of projects in touring cars, Dakar rally raids and GT racing. Former RJN driver and 2018 Blancpain Endurance Pro-Am champion Chris Buncombe will oversee various commercial aspects of the GT3 program as well as other Rocket Motorsport projects with Button.
“I’m delighted and privileged to be in partnership with Jenson to race the superb NSX GT3 Evo,” team principal Bob Neville said. “The team are preparing for the challenge of running what is a new car to us in the most competitive endurance championship in the world. We look forward to announcing the driver line-up in the coming weeks.
“I would especially like to thank JAS Motorsport for their hard work to enable the project to come together in such a short time-frame.”
Stefano Fini, JAS Motorsport NSX GT3 Project Leader, added: “It is fantastic to see the NSX GT3 Evo competing full-time in the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup, and especially with an experienced championship-winning team like RJN and involvement from Jenson Button who has achieved so much within the Honda Racing family. There is an incredible amount of potential with this project and I’m sure they will do an extremely good job as they hunt for success in the Silver Cup.”
Button, who won the 2018 Japanese Super GT title in a Honda NSX GT500, recently stepped aside from his driving role in SMP Racing’s No. 11 BR1 AER FIA WEC LMP1 entry for the Sebring and Spa rounds, citing clashing commitments. His place has been taken by Brendon Hartley.