The top New Zealand V8 Supercars driver Shane van Gisbergen is leaving the sport for personal reasons at the age of just 23.
Van Gisbergen's current contract expires at the end of the 2012 season and a new three-year contract signed earlier in the year would have seen van Gisbergen stand as the longest serving driver at Stone Brothers Racing.
Van Gisbergen expressed his desire to leave V8 Supercars last week and SBR have released him from contract.
He says contrary to media reports he doesn't want to race for another V8 Supercar team and his decision to leave the sport has nothing to do with Stone Brothers' decision to switch manufacturers in 2013 to the Erebus Motorsport-backed Mercedes cars in 2013.
Van Gisbergen will be moving back home to New Zealand and he says he has no fixed plans for the future.
He won two races and finished fourth last year - he's currently fifth in the standings with one race to go.