Vandoorne aware of interest from rivals

By on Friday, May 13, 2016
McLaren Honda

McLaren Honda

Stoffel Vandoorne says he is aware of interest from rival outfits as he bids to secure a full-time seat with McLaren in 2017.

Vandoorne, the reigning GP2 champion, has acted as McLaren's test and reserve driver this year and was called up to race in Bahrain, where he went on to score a point courtesy of 10th position.

Vandoorne insists his target is to secure a 2017 race seat with McLaren but is sure he would be a target for other teams should Jenson Button be retained alongside Fernando Alonso.

“Definitely my number one priority is to be in F1,” he said.

“I have a contract with McLaren and I feel happy here, my target here is to be with McLaren.

“But if for some reason there is not a possibility here then it’s normal I will have to look elsewhere and I know there is interest from other teams as well.”

When pushed on whether Vandoorne had a cut-off point to know his 2017 prospects, he replied: “I have one in my head, yeah.”

Vandoorne also added that his performance in Bahrain aided his reputation within the Formula 1 paddock.

“I definitely feel things have changed, a lot of people knew what my potential was, I showed it in the series I’ve driven,” he said.

“I think just to have that opportunity to race in F1 made it even better, it was a good weekend.

“I scored the first point for the team and I showed I can handle the pressure of F1 and did a good job on my first weekend which was not easy arriving so late and having little preparation.”

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