Vandoorne hopeful of avoiding Magnussen path

By on Saturday, January 23, 2016
McLaren Honda

McLaren Honda

McLaren test and reserve driver Stoffel Vandoorne is confident that he can avoid the path taken by former colleague Kevin Magnussen, who left the team in 2015.

Magnussen raced for McLaren in 2014 and occupied a reserve role in 2015, but did not drive for the outfit after an aborted Australian Grand Prix effort while filling in for the injured Fernando Alonso.

McLaren's decision to retain Alonso and Jenson Button for 2016, along with the rise of eventual GP2 champion Vandoorne, left Magnussen out in the cold and he duly departed the set-up last October.

Vandoorne is set to spend this year competing in Japan's Super Formula category and he is confident that he can retain strong Formula 1 links.

"We are both very different and our positions were quite different," he is quoted by Autosport.

"Kevin came off the back of a Formula 1 campaign and was the reserve for a season without possibilities to race anything beside that.

"Kevin didn't have a lot of track time but hopefully in my case, it will be quite a bit different.

"If the Super Formula deal goes ahead, I will also have some racing experience. Hopefully I'll have some F1 testing beside that as well so it will be quite a bit different."

Vandoorne will conduct two days of running for McLaren at next week's wet weather tyre test at Paul Ricard.

Magnussen has been linked with a Renault seat amid uncertainty over Pastor Maldonado's future, while Manor has yet to sign any drivers for the upcoming campaign.

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