Lance Stroll, Williams, Yas Marina, 2016

Vandoorne and Stroll’s race numbers for 2017 confirmed

2017 F1 season

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Stoffel Vandoorne and Lance Stroll, who will start their first full seasons of Formula One next year, have confirmed which numbers they will race with.

McLaren driver Vandoorne will race using number two. This is the lowest number available as reigning champion Nico Rosberg is the only person eligible to use the number one, but he will not be racing next year. The previous occupant of Vandoorne’s seat was Jenson Button, who used number 22.

Stroll, who will make his debut for Williams, will race using number 18. The 18-year-old’s seat was previously occupied by Felipe Massa, who used number 19.

The provisional entry list for 2017 includes two vacancies at Manor, one at Sauber alongside Marcus Ericsson and one at Mercedes alongside Lewis Hamilton.

See the updated list of 2017 F1 drivers and teams

2017 F1 season

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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  • 43 comments on “Vandoorne and Stroll’s race numbers for 2017 confirmed”

    1. I thought Vandoorne had the number 47? what’s going to happen to that?

      1. Pat Ruadh (@fullcoursecaution)
        6th December 2016, 19:42

        I think that’s like McLarens testing number? Vandoorne is the number 2 driver then, ballsy move

        1. @fullcoursecaution Pretty sure thats mark webber!!!

          1. … that was nasty!

      2. McLaren testing number. Similar situation as Will Stevens, who had #46 in his debut (Abu Dhabi 2014) and then used #28 as a regular driver in 2015.

    2. McLaren driver Vandoorne will race using number two.


    3. Not bad for a number 2 driver, huh?

    4. So I think we know who will feature in this week’s Caption Competition again…

    5. So for the second time Fernando Alonso will face a rookie at the McLaren team with the number 2.

      1. uzair, If he stays faces rookie for second time else will face the ex-rookie second time ;)

    6. “McLaren driver Vandoorne will race using number two. This is the lowest number available as reigning champion Nico Rosberg is the only person eligible to use the number one”

      What’s the highest number available, out of interest? Do they just cut it off somewhere, or can you rock up in Melbourne with the famous 1,033,245 number on the side of of your car if you so choose?

      1. Sadly not – it’s 99, which Adrian Sutil chose when he was racing.

        I don’t believe drivers are required to use integers, however, so perhaps some smarty pants could choose π? I know I would…

        1. Or e? What about imaginary numbers? I would like to see one driver come along and pick an irrational number though.

          1. @keithcollantine @craig-o it’d be epic if someone chose “pi e”

            1. ColdFly F1 (@)
              7th December 2016, 6:50

              to be truly ‘epic’ it should be “e pi”

        2. Someone would take it too far and channel four would have to add Rachel Riley to the presenting team. Better than 8 out of 10 cats does countdown though

        3. What about fractions? I want someone to rock up as 9 3/4.

    7. Let’s hope Vandoorne’s ego isn’t writing cheques that his body or talent can’t cash (apologies to Top Gun). No. 2 …. really ???

      1. Its just a number thats available surely?

    8. Evidently Alain Prost liked the number 2. I believe he won several championships with it.

      1. @bullmello, yes, Prost won three titles whilst carrying No. 2 on his car (in 1985, 1989 and 1993). Although they used other numbers (since there was no formal convention for numbering cars at the time), Fangio and Hulme also won championships (in 1957 and 1967) whilst predominantly using No. 2 on their cars.

        1. There was a formal convention. The winning constructor had 1 and 2 swapping their numbers with the champions of the previous year.

          1. Tommy Scragend
            7th December 2016, 9:32


            I think anon was referring to Fangio and Hulme’s time. There was no formal convention then – the numbers were allocated on a race-by-race basis by the race organiser. In Fangio’s time (apart from the 2 races he competed in in 1958) the constructors’ championship didn’t even exist.

            1. Tommy Scragend, yes, that is correct – what I was referring to was the fact that in the era when Fangio and Hulme raced, driver numbers were allocated by the race organisers (commonly based on the order that the entry forms were processed in).

              The idea of a formal numbering system wasn’t introduced until 1973, and even then they still needed a few more seasons whilst some of the initla problems were worked out (for example, in 1974 Peterson was allocated No.1 because Lotus won the WCC in 1973 and Stewart, the defending champion, had retired).

              In 1957, for some peculiar reason, most venues chose to only allocate even numbers to the drivers. In most races that season, Fangio, as the defending champion, was usually allocated the next lowest number (No. 2), but in the Monaco GP he was allocated No. 32 instead.

              Similarly, in 1967, whilst Brabham and Hulme were commonly allocated No. 1 and No. 2 respectively given that Brabham was both the defending WDC and WCC, in four of the eleven races (France, Monaco, Italy and Belgium) they were allocated different numbers, with other drivers being given No. 1 (for example, Amon was given No. 1 in the Belgian GP whilst Beltoise was No. 1 in Monaco).

      2. He had the option of being #0 in 1993 (because defending champion Mansell was the only one allowed to have the #1, but since he retired from F1, no one else could use it at the time) or #2. So he chose #2, and Damon Hill was #0.

        1. SomeoneFromBelgium
          7th December 2016, 13:34

          The rumor was that Prost had first choice and said “who wants to be a zero? I’ll be 2, thank you very much”

    9. FlyingLobster27
      6th December 2016, 22:10

      The new system means we won’t see Mercedes using #0. If they had though, would Lewis or his new team-mate had it?

      1. Michael Brown (@)
        6th December 2016, 22:16

        The teammate, because they would occupy the car Rosberg would have.

        1. Michael Brown (@)
          6th December 2016, 22:20

          The precedent is 1993-94. Damon Hill took the seat Mansell vacated for 1993, and since Prost retired after winning 1993, Hill kept #0 for 1994.

          1. @mbr-9 wasn’t it decided by the team? the leading driver with the smallest number, and the second guy with the highest?

            Trulli was #7 in 2004, and then Alonso took over the leading number for 2005, using #5. He was #8 before, and Fisichella replaced Trulli and got #6.

            I suppose, if the previous system still applied, Hamilton would get #0 and whoever replaces Rosberg would get #2.

            1. Michael Brown (@)
              6th December 2016, 23:51

              @fer-no65 Yes, I overlooked that. In fact, there is a more recent example of that happening. Michael Schumacher was given the lower number from 2010-2012 even though Rosberg out scored him each season.

            2. One thing though… MSC wasn’t given the lower number. He took it! He claimed he didn’t want any even numbers for superstitious reasons. But we all knew it was a way to get into the head of his teammates.

          2. I thought that was just because Senna refused to have the number 0, so it went to Hill.

            1. Tommy Scragend
              7th December 2016, 9:34

              No, it was Prost. “Who wants to be a zero?” and all that. I agree it sounds like more of the kind of thing that Senna would say, but it was 1993 where 0 and 2 were first used by Williams. Hill took 0 then and kept it in 1994, while Senna took over Prost’s number.

    10. ha! number 2! I’ll change my avatar accordingly as soon as the first winter test :)

      1. ColdFly F1 (@)
        7th December 2016, 6:59

        just put a disclaimer: “add the digits, and then again!”

    11. Well there goes my number of choice for next year’s F1 game.

    12. Poaching Americanisms can be good for F1, but this number-thing smacks of fatuity. F1 doesn’t need driver numbers, because it already has an excellent three-letter-driver-designation.

      Drivers could customize their three letters into a logo that would be a far better identifier. I would mandate that this identifier appear in five places on the car:

      1. On the deck, just ahead of the steering wheel, to be visible from the on-board camera.
      2. On the nose. To be visible from a front camera shot.
      3. On both side-pods (or engine covers), to be visible from a side shots.
      4. On the rear wing, to be visible to from a rear shot, including a following car’s on-board camera.

      Such marking would also help the drivers, who are often not aware as to who is driving an adjacent car.

      1. +1

      2. Lewisham Milton
        7th December 2016, 15:46

        Four letter words would be better for some drivers.

    Comments are closed.