Monster Energy Cup Champion Bobby Labonte has spent the last few years as a member of the FOX commentator team, but, at age 53 has decided to return to racing after retiring from full time driving in 2016.

Labonte will be a part of NASCAR’s Whelen Euro Series where he will be behind the wheel of a familiar number – 18. He will be driving a Toyota for the French team RDV Competition.

Last year Labonte ran two races, placing in the top 15; this year he will be running the entire season which begins this weekend in Valencia, Spain. Unlike the Monster Energy Cup circuit, the Whelen Euro Series is predominantly a road course circuit.

With the circuit traveling to Italy, England, Germany, Belgium, and France; Labonte admits that he will be visiting places he has never been to before saying, “it’ll be a challenge for me, bit I also know that we’ll get up to speed pretty quick.”

The first American to run in the Whelen Euro Series, Labonte will be team mates with Frederic Gabillon and Ulysse Delsaux. His primary sponsor will be Yacco – a French oil company.

As a part of NASCAR’s premiere series, Labonte won 21 races driving the number 18 car. Labonte also won a championship in the Xfintiy Series in 1991, which at the time was called the Busch Series.

 

feature photo credit: CC BY 2.5, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=314178

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